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  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Hi Jennyss, I did get good advice. My surgeon said it’s quite normal for all this soreness in my upper arm because he had to get in between the muscles close to my shoulder to access the vein for the portecath.  And I am small and my chest wall has no fat on it for padding and every time I move my arm it seems to dig into me. So, I was happy to know it seems all ok. And he told me I can start running again which made me even happier 😊
  • Giovanna_BCNAGiovanna_BCNA Member Posts: 1,848
    Hello @ddon so glad to hear that you followed up with your surgeon regarding your portacath concerns.  Understandable that you are feeling like you are all over the place. So much to take in over a short period of time and lots going on.  Managing thoughts and emotions can be tricky, dont hesitate to call our  helpline on 1800 500 258 to speak with one of our cancer nurses for support.  Sounds like you have a great breast care nurse which you can also speak to about how you are feeling.  Wishing you all the best with your next stage of treatment.  Kind regards
  • llabandilollabandilo Member Posts: 5
    Hi @ddon . While reading your initial post, everything that I've gone through from diagnosis to surgery early this year came flooding back. It just goes to show that we are not alone on this journey. And as they say, this, too, shall pass. Hang in there. You got this!
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    It sure does make us realise that our story is a common one doesn’t it. So many ladies going thru similar things and each of us feeling fairly wretched. How was your year llabandilo? And how are you feeling now? I wonder if my mind will ever feel half way relaxed again. Thank you for your comment 
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Well, I have one day left before chemo starts and it probably sounds crazy but I feel like I’m on death row somehow. Such a grieving process for the healthy body I have had and I am running every morning knowing I won’t be able to keep it up. 
    I had blood taken this morning and the lady told me ‘soon, a bruise will be the least of your problems’ and then ‘ I watch people come in here looking not too bad to start with and then just getting sicker and sicker as the treatment progresses.’ So very encouraging. 
     On the positive side, my bone scan was clear which took a huge weight off my mind, I got my long hair cut short today so that losing it might be less traumatic, and my wounds have healed beautifully and finally my port has settled down. 
    I start with infusions every second week for 8 weeks, then weekly for 12 weeks, then 5 weeks radiation. It’s a plan and I guess I will cope like so many others do. One day at a time. 
    Thank you for listening. 
  • AfraserAfraser MelbourneMember Posts: 3,848
    Excellent news about your scan. You have a plan and yes, you will find your way through treatment, one day at a time.
    Occasionally you will come across thoughtless people who will feel the need to impart their take on your world, without any regard for your feelings or sensitivity. Give them no time at all. They are not helpful and their opinions are just that - opinions not facts and probably not very well thought through opinions either. Chemo is scary but if you can see it as a rite of passage to life (which of course is the intention), it may help.
    Best wishes.
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Thank you for that. I am learning to laugh off comments - I know that people can’t possibly understand unless they have been in this situation - but still it astounds me how insensitive people can be. 
     I appreciate so much the opportunity to even have chemo - I am terrified but still so thankful that there is a hope of success with treatment. It would be so much worse to just get sent home to hope for the best. 
  • kmakmkmakm MelbourneMember Posts: 7,973
    @ddon Two nights before I started chemo I had a massive panic attack. It went on for 45 minutes. I'd never had anything like it before, or since. However the day came and went, the weeks came and went, it was awful but mostly bearable, grotty but doable. You will get through it, there will be laughs along the way. Showers will be a fabulous sensory experience and you will keep cooler this summer!

    It's really important to exercise during chemo, it helps reduce the side effects. You may not be able to run in the first week but you could give it a go in the second week of each cycle. I walked almost everyday of chemo (which started on the 8th Jan last year, almost two years ago). It was a short slow stagger to start with, building up to a brisk 5kms each three week cycle except the last. The more high intensity the better.

    Keep your eyes on the prize, a cancer free life. You are doing everything in your power to be there for your son. You should be proud of yourself. Some people get away with chemo scott free, others have lingering side effects. It's a bitter pill to swallow but it's the best we have and the price we willingly pay to have a shot at long life. My mum had aggressive breast cancer at 51. In 1986 chemo was a blunt instrument, not the nuanced thing it is now. But she did it and is still going strong at 85 years of age.

    I have never felt more loved than I did during chemo, especially from my friends. You've got this, and we've got you. Big hug, K xox
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Thank you K for taking the time to write. It helps so much to hear from those who have been thru this. I saw a lady last week about to have her first treatment and I asked her if she was afraid and she shrugged and said ‘no, not at all’. I am actually terrified so I felt like I should be braver at 47 but I’m not. I wasn’t at all afraid of the surgery but the chemo is a totally different story. 
  • AllyJayAllyJay Member Posts: 863
    Hi there @ddon...chemo is scary to think of, but as I went through it, I pictured the drugs dripping in and hunting down the cancer, cell by cell. I pictured each f**ker exploding with a screech of outrage as it exploded. Dramatic, I know, but it worked for me. I also used a good dose of black humour along the way. My husband took to my bald head with textas before each chemo session, and the nurses would trot over to see the artwork. Once a stick figure pushing a lawnmower....that was their favourite. Also knitted a bright fuschia pink beanie with F**K CANCER (with all the letters) and wore it with a grin. On a more serious note, it was a hard slog, but if this old trout got through, so will you. Also remember, opinions are like arseholes...everybody has one. Hugs.
  • arpiearpie Mid North Coast, NSWMember Posts: 6,088
    All the best, @ddon    I hope that you find after today that it isn’t  as bad as you thought .. even tho it will not be fun either.  You can do this xx-
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Thank you AllyJay and Arpie. I guess you both know how encouraging and strengthening it is to have words of support from those who have gone before. It helps so much x
  • kmakmkmakm MelbourneMember Posts: 7,973
    edited December 2019
    I was exactly the same @ddon. Chemo has a legacy pr problem due to how it used to be. It's not the horror it was. I hope today goes smoothly for you. Big hug, K

    PS I was 51 when I had chemo. Age has nothing to do with our reaction to cancer and its treatment! Get into your big girl undies and give 'em a good hoick.  :*
  • ddonddon Member Posts: 348
    Thank you kmakm. You’re right about the age thing. I am grateful I am not in my 20’s and 30’s - feel so sorry for those so young going thru this - but still I am 25 in my head and don’t feel in any way ready for this. 
  • Brenda5Brenda5 Burrum Heads, QldMember Posts: 2,420
    I took my laptop and my fave dvd movie twister to my first chemo. After they had set me all up I put on a headset, got hubby to plug my lappy in to a point behind the chair and listened to the blissful music on the dvd. It took my mind away from chemo and made me feel much better. All the best. <3
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