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Emotional roller coaster
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cancer47 posted:
Hi
Just wanted to ask how many women are out there that are constantly riding a roller coaster of emotions. Just as I start to feel like I'm standing on firm ground another problem pops-up. I had my second of 4 chemo's and have just found out that after chemo I need a full hysterectomy. One ovary is the size of a softball. They don't think its cancer but its too big to leave in. That pushes back the 6 weeks of radiation now finishing up into july. I started this whole crazy ride mid december will it ever end???
And on a whole other issue, my sister and niece and friend are coming to town this weekend. I am nervous about seeing them. I'm not the same person I was before I went thru all this cancer stuff. I still am getting use to changes treatment has done to my body. I know I have a great wig but to me its still a wig. They think I can do all this running around with them going out for mexican food. And if I get tired I can lay down at someones house. Helloooooo I just had chemo 8 days ago. This is starting to sound more like a vent but I just had to see if anyone else has felt this way.

Thanks Cancer47
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sue8434 responded:
Wow, you've got a lot on your plate right now. Is it possible that your sister, niece and friend will understand that you really need to put yourself first right now and REST? I bet they will. Don't worry about how you look. Most everyone told me they couldn't tell I was wearing a wig. Hopefully they will notice right away that you don't have the stamina you used to have. They may even offer to help you with something. Take them up on it if they do! That was not easy for me as I'm very independent. And yes, in answer to your question I have felt that way too. And yes, you will get past all this treatment stuff and begin to feel much better. You have a few months of 'being as tough as you can be, getting rest and lots of water,' but then things will start to turn around. When I was having an ultrasound of my lump at the very beginning of my cancer journey the technitian told me that cancer changes you. And it does, it changes you for the better. Its like it wakes you up to other peoples challenges and if you are so inclined, it will take you closer to God. That has really happened to me. I know that no matter what cancer does to my body it can't touch my soul that God is holding so closely to his heart. He loves you like that too as he does us all. So take heart and be honest with your sister about how you are feeling at the moment. I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Sue
 
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rachael67 responded:
I echo Sue's sugestions, but would take it one step further: Are these folks coming at your invitation or did they decide they were just what you needed???? If you invited them, then do set the ground rules. Begin when they arrive (or before if possible!) by telling them openly and honestly how you feel and what you need. And then keep to your schedule! They love you and would feel dreadful if they made things worse, but they don't know how to help. They are planning this very hectic agenda because, undoubtedly, feeling helpless, they hope this will distract you from the crap you are going through. (Let's face it...Given any other situation, women would think this a dream plan. You have to be the one to tell them it is your personal nightmare!!)

If you have not invited them, it may be time to suggest very strongly that you would be able to enjoy them and all they plan better at a later date. Again, be honest! Tell them how you feel and how difficult it is for you to have to delay their visit, but at this time, you just cannot deal with it. Focus on how a few months from now you can all celebrate that you have gone through this stuff and are finally on the "other side" of it! (Sadly, going through is the only way ...As much as we'd wish it so, none of us have yet to find a simple way "around"!!)

Make sure, however, that you reitterate how absolutely thoughtful and caring it is of them to want to entertain you...How you appreciate this kind of concern and support. And then continue to keep them in the loop. The last thing you would want them to take away is that you are dismissing them and their thoughtfulness!

As far as roller-coasters, I must also report that we seem to have bought a permanent ticket! But I also am of the conviction that if it hadn't been the bc roller-coaster, it would (and may yet accompany!) another one! Life is kinda like that. I heard just recently that those who are depressed think that life should be all happiness. And those who are not depressed realize that bad times will occur. Just make sure that your glass (half-full or half-empty) doesn't leak!!

Blesings.
 
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TxCycleGal2 responded:
Hiya Cancer47,

Sorry you are riding the roller coaster with a nonstop ticket!

I am a 9-year survivor but did not go through chemo.

My beloved cousin Karen went through 4 rounds of chemo w/stomach cancer. I lost her in May 2009.

The loss of her beautiful long hair from chemo was a struggle for her. I sent her a soft chemo cap which she wore (even tho she had a nice wig) and kept with her as her "security blanket" even when not wearing it.

As I told her, hold your head up high. The loss of your hair shows you are a warrior and is something you can be proud of, not ashamed of.

She said she liked that idea and would try it. Although she missed her hair, she felt an uplifting thinking of it that way.

So wear a cap, a kerchief, a wig, or feel the breeze unadorned. You ARE a warrior and WOMAN, hear your roar!

And keep a schedule and environment you are comfortable with during the upcoming visit by relatives. It is YOUR life and you are fighting the fight of your life.

I'm off for my annual mammogram in about an hour. Even after 9 years NED, I still get the heebie jeebies and "what if's" after all this time. UGH!

Be well, be brave, be strong and be at peace,
Betty
 
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cancer47 replied to TxCycleGal2's response:
Thanks everyone for your replies. I go to the doctor tomorrow to have IV fluids and blood counts. My husband said maybe the results will show I can't be going all over the place but he also said he will take someone aside and say "no she's not doing that!" Its hard to say no when people only want to lift my spirits. I feel better hearing from all of you that the roller coaster ride has ups as well as downs, I forgot about that. I just want a one day ticket and not a season pass.

Cancer47
 
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live_each_day responded:
I understand your roller coaster ride of emotions completely. Your sister, niece and friend are probably hoping their visit will take your mind off of the journey you are going through right now. They have good intentions but really have no idea what your body is going through and how you really feel unless they've experienced it themselves. I realize (from my own experience) how hard it is to explain to your loved ones all the changes (emotionally, physically and mentally) you are and will be going through. But the main person to be true to is yourself. You need to be good to yourself -- pamper yourself while you are going through this journey! If you're not feeling up to par to doing something, don't force yourself into doing it to please others -- just explain that you're having an off day and maybe another day would be better and hopefully they will understand. I've always been a person who always considered others' feelings before my own. Well, my breast cancer journey has made me rethink all of that. I still consider others' feelings but I've now included myself on that list and take time to really care for myself whether it be rescheduling a visit from relatives or friends because I feel blah and would rather just fall into bed or just being a couch potato because I don't have the energy to do anything. Remember "this too will pass" and don't ever forget to pamper yourself -- you deserve it!

God bless you,
live_each_day
 
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ladysmith53 responded:
Yes, it is like a roller coaster ride for me too. I go to every breast cancer support meeting I can, & general cancer support group meetings, I always receive great information and wonderful support. Have you been to Look Good Feel Better sponsored by the American Cancer Association. It was alot of fun & I got a goody bag with $400.00 of FREE makeup. Its a good mood builder. Try to find something positive about every situation, it helps. Like, going out for Mexican food is easier then cooking. I appreciate my family & friends more now, as I dont know the future or how long I can enjoy their company, even if my prognosis is good. I will pray for you that all your needs will be met, and all your angels will come to your aid and make life a little easier each day. Healing Wishes, from you other "sister".
 
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564deb responded:
Hi There. ?Your posting brought back very vivid memories to me of what I was going through last year at this time. ?An emotional roller coaster is putting it mildly:) ?This diagnosis and the treatment that goes along with it are most certainly the biggest challenge I had ever faced. ?Barely a day went by that I didn't cry, some days being a total meltdown. ?I also had a great human hair wig that everyone told me looked just like my real hair. I actually liked it. But, I knew only too well that it was a wig and I also knew what lay underneath it......nothing. ?I often times looked in the mirror and wondered who that woman was looking back at me.?For me, the emotional part of the journey was as hard or harder than the surgeries or treatments themselves. ?I became somewhat of a recluse, not really wanting much to go out or see anyone unless I had to. ?Good or bad, right or wrong, this is how I rolled during that time. So....I can totally relate to your emotions. ?

My suggestion on the weekend visit would be to take off the wig....they all know that you have lost your hair and if they don't it is time they do. ?Put on a ball cap and be proud of the strength and determination that you have deep within you right now. This will also be a wake up call to your sister and your niece that you are a very strong woman, BUT you are going through a terrific battle right now. ?Things must be done on your schedule and at your pace. ?If you are like me, you might want a big bowl of mac and cheese instead of mexican food!
I had a favorite ball cap that said "Cancer Sucks" on the front. I am sure that it was a shock when people saw me for the first time in it, but I tried to wear my baldness as a sign of strength and courage. ?

I will be one year out of treatment this Saturday, March 20th. My hair has grown back in gray and curly and I love it! ?I always had it shoulder length and colored before and really didn't know what my true color was after all these years. ?My new boobies are still a work in process. ?I have expanders in and will get them exchanged for the permanent implants next month. ?I am enjoying not wearing a bra for the first time in 40 years! ?

Looking back, this past year has seemed like an eternity. ?I have learned to love deeper and I thank God each morning that I wake up alive and healthy. ?I worry each time I have those dreaded follow up appointments, but I guess that is the way it will be from here on out. ?

You will get through this and your life will once again be even better than before. ?In the meantime, just do what you can do. Be proud of who you are. ?Be fierce!!

A "breast" friend,
Deb
 
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kiwiallright responded:
HI,

It sounds like the weekend is going to be busy, take care of yourself and do what you can. The guests may not truly understand how you feel and are looking at cheering you up. Drop the wig off and relax, it took me a while to realize that hidding behind the wig did change what was going on, just the perception that all was okay. I stayed away from resturants and limited my visits to the stores because you never know what bugs are flying around. From experience people truly do not know what you are going through unless they have been there themselves and do take care of yourself. About eight days after my sixth treatment I had to drive as a support crew for my husband and daughter and had to meet them at certain rest stops - it was 206 miles, hubby got upset at stop one because I was slow getting there, what he did not know is I could hardly walk, he did not know until the next day.

Also the ride -of will it ever end happen- I know that it will eventually - then your body has been through hell and even though all the treatments & surgeries are over your body says to you, slow down you are going to fast - ( i never listen - but you need too)

Good luck and I truly hope that you are able to have an enjoyable weekend and be honest with your family and friends about how you feel...

Kiwigirl
 
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strenght responded:
Good morning,

I couldn't help but reply to your post. I have struggled through breast cancer for 3 yrs. Total hysterectomy last year. The feeling of firm ground comes from your inner peace. IT IS NOT EASY NOR EFFORTLESS! Do things that make YOU feel better. Stop worrying about people that don't understand the tremendous stress and anxiety you are feeling. Times will get better. It is theraputic to speak to others that are experiences similar events. I know it has helped me. VENT all you want! People that love you will understand what you are sharing with them, the others......SEE YA!!!!! You find out who your friends are!


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