I need to vent. I want to scream, slam doors, hit something
Two days ago my daughter visited & told me she has been diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. She was strong, composed, not emotional as she talked about it being treatable, not curable, talked about updating her will. I think I am still in shock. We have since spoken on the phone, particularly about how & when she will tell her two children. We are taking her tomorrow to her first chemo appointment & I need to remain calm, as that is what is necessary.
When I told her in 2011 of my diagnosis of early breast cancer, we were calm & positive together, though she did blink away tears. I always felt throughout my journey that things are more difficult for the carer than the patient - now I am experiencing that role & I can't stop the tears. My dear husband is quiet as he always is, but I know he is shattered. Now that he has gone to bed I can let tears flow & write this.
We are angry - why didn't she have regular mammograms after my diagnosis? Why did no-one pick it up earlier? I feel guilty - is it genetic - my mother, myself - even though both diagnosed later in life? Guilty too because I just want to hold her while we both sob – but that won’t help her.
Fortunately she has a best friend, one who supported her through her marriage breakup; there are also other friends, but my help will be needed too & I must be strong when I feel like collapsing in a heap. Any advice, suggestions on how best to support her & the kids would be welcome.