Home Now what? The highs and lows of survivorship



Feeling ordinary

Caz1Caz1 Bayside , Melbourne Member Posts: 361
 Ok ,so I’m a few months post treatment finishing.  Day by day, I’m feeling slowly better and so glad to be here. Grateful for my care.  In some ways I feel really lucky! Life seems more magical in some ways, and I am mostly  enjoying my second chance at it. Heck, yesterday I went on a flying fox at a park! Lol  :D

But.  I still have a little voice nagging me with uncertainty.....that maybe it’s going to come back.  I’m currently feeling achy, and I’m so scared it’s going to my bones. How do other “ survivors “ deal with these feelings? Today, I’m feeling like such a fraud calling myself a “survivor”..... maybe my happy days are over....
(I’m seeing my oncologist next week for routine check)

Maybe it’s just a bad day. I’m just a bit flat.

Caz x

Comments

  • FLCloverFLClover Sydney Member Posts: 952
    Life to me seems more magical too @Caz1. I can’t explain it, but I have different feelings towards things and places. So much better than feeling ‘whatever’. 
    I went on a flying fox too about 2 weeks ago. It was sprinkling and I was dirty with sand. Usually my nightmare scenario, but this time I didn’t care cos I was having so much fun. 
    And yes, there’s always that nagging little fear that it could be taken away. But just push it away, and continue having your fun 
    And you’re not a fraud in any way for calling yourself a survivor. Actually you’re not a survivor, you’re a thriver. Words are important so choose carefully 🙂. You beat this bas***d and now you’re thriving. Make sure you enjoy as much of it as you can. 
    And maybe talk to a counsellor about possible PTSD, especially around scan/test time ♥️
  • iserbrowniserbrown Regional VictoriaMember Posts: 4,504
    @Caz1

    Hopefully the information within this link will help you

    "Fear of cancer recurrence | Breast Cancer Network Australia" https://www.bcna.org.au/understanding-breast-cancer/fear-of-cancer-recurrence/

    Take care
  • Cath62Cath62 Brisbane Member Posts: 182
    Hi @Caz1, I am a year since diagnosis and feel healthy. Yes little doubts pop up from time to time but I push it away and focus on the now and daily joy of being here. I express gratitude daily and exercise and I think these things help stay in the moment and stay positive about the future. I just climed a mountain with 900 stairs so 1800 stairs up and down. I amazed myself. I am going to do a flying fox in June as part of a tree top challenge. I feel good. We are thriving in being cancer free and we are not frauds. We are amazing! Be proud of yourself. Keep doing it all. 
  • AfraserAfraser MelbourneMember Posts: 3,424
    A ‘routine check’ can trigger all sorts of ordinariness! You are immediately reminded of why you are having the check. It does get better, hang in there. 
  • LocksleyLocksley Macedon Ranges, VictoriaMember Posts: 434
    Hi @Caz1
    Congratulations on going on the flying fox.   I'm afraid the rope would break under the strain of my butt!
    I like the word "Thriver" as it really resonates with me that we are trying to do so much more than survive.  You are not a fraud.   I am also grateful for the care I had and the second chance I have.  I am trying to find something I am grateful for each day.    Do you have a counsellor you can check in with from time to time.  Sending you hugs.   xxx
  • JwrennJwrenn Mornington PeninsulaMember Posts: 96
    I get it @Caz1, I have the same little niggle in my brain, mainly when I’m trying to get to sleep or waking up with a hot flush and I can’t turn my brain off. My oncologist referred me to a cancer rehabilitation program at the hospital after I was a blubbering mess recently at my appointment with her. I’m going to see an exercise physiologist tomorrow, and have telehealth  appointments coming up with a dietitian and counsellor to see if they can help. Maybe yours can do something similar. Take care xx
  • Caz1Caz1 Bayside , Melbourne Member Posts: 361
    Wow, some real wisdom here.  Thanks!
     
    I agree, maybe the looming  appointment  is part of the problem.  And I’m having my covid shot on Saturday which I’m not looking forward to and yes, I’m worried about it even though I am over 50!  Just a bit sick of medical stuff I suspect. :| 
     
    And yes, the word survivor IS problematic.  Wow.  Thriver is so much better. It comes without the negative connotations and pressure.  Pressure to survive and not let anyone down by getting cancer again. To have not ‘ failed’ at getting better.  That really hits a nerve,  and seems much clearer to me now. That’s brilliant @FLClover and Tracey. Thankyou.   <3

    The flying fox must be a thing haha, it once would have been my nightmare scenario too, but I had so much fun and laughed and laughed! 
    Like, what the heck have I got to lose? 

    Big hugs to you all
    Caz xxxxxxx


  • MicheleRMicheleR South AustraliaMember Posts: 226
    Hi @Caz1,

    Im having ups and downs too. Im about a 6 weeks out of active treatment.  

    Im busy. More than id like. I notice when i feel rushed i eat crap and too much. Im scared of returning to old habits if the intensity of diagnosis and treatment dials down. Maybe the stress eating and lack of exercise of past times will return and ill get a recurrence. Maybe the rushing around caused it. Its only a vague worry but present. Will i undo. 

    I just cried my eyes out over the 2020 video they showed in the living well webinar. So personal to my experience somehow  

    For me, i have to challenge my thoughts. The cancer (not my cancer!) didnt happen in a day, in a week, it happened god knows how. Its nothing i can control. 

    I remind myself its not a test to pass. Its just trying to move to health again. 

    All of us are superwomen, we have passed through an ordeal that we cant undo. Does really matter what the label we apply is. Is it winning. I dont know.

    But bless that feeling where some things, feelings and experiences are just that bit shinier.

    Michele
  • FLCloverFLClover Sydney Member Posts: 952
    @Julez1958 hear hear!! 🥂🎉
  • GreengirlGreengirl Riverina NSW Member Posts: 56
    I’m taking an antidepressant and seeing a psychologist. A cancer diagnosis is definitely a trauma to recover from. Your not alone x 

  • arpiearpie Mid North Coast, NSWMember Posts: 4,629
    @Caz1 (and anyone else!!) - feel free to give this a go - it is an online mental health support group that has partnered with the Cancer Council to provide the service for those who are either rural and can't access help  .... a few from BCNA have already used their services - it is available thru to October!  Well worth checking out (the links & explanation are here:)
    https://onlinenetwork.bcna.org.au/discussion/22855/cancope-an-online-program-to-help-those-with-cancer-cope-both-emotionally-and-physically#latest

  • Caz1Caz1 Bayside , Melbourne Member Posts: 361
    Well I canceled my covid jab.  Gonna talk it over with my onco on Friday.  I feel a little bit relieved.  I’m worried about my immune system to be honest.  It’s a bit hyper at the moment.  

    And I’ve booked an appointment with my long suffering psychologist lol.  Last night I did some journaling. (after a bingefest on Netflix and lots of chocolate) Talk about stream of consciousness! I was flicking through my journal, heaven forbid anyone looks at it.  :#     Found a bucket list from lockdown last year of things I wanted to do when lockdown ended and funnily enough I have done most of them. So it’s not like I am not having a good time on the outside,.....obviously I need to sort out the dark fog in my head. 
    #random thoughts 

    love Caz xx
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