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This week, I'd like to talk about sources of strength. As a cancer survivor, your life has been changed significantly. You've adapted to a major change in your health status and how you view being healthy. You may have completely changed your routine at home and at work. What you may have considered "normal" lifestyle and habits probably are much different now than prior to your diagnosis.
In a recent survey of cancer survivors, we asked people to identify their primary sources of strength. The three most prevalent answers were, in order:
It's not usually just one thing, but a combination of things that give people strength. I'm always so touched when I reflect on what it means to be a survivor for each individual. Everyone has their own unique way of dealing with the impact that cancer has had on their life.
At Mayo Clinic in Rochester, a journal is kept out in the Cancer Education Center as well as the treatment center floor for anyone to write down their thoughts. I would like to feature a couple of journal entries that really get to the heart of what gave them strength.
"I've come to the realization that life is about experiences and events. It is not measured in days or years. So experience life — don't measure it."
"Cancer changed me, but I found strength in my faith, support from family and friends, excellent medical care and my positive attitude."
Feel free to share your perspective. I'd love to hear more about your experience as a cancer survivor. What gives you strength?
Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.
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my best wishes,
I am a two month cancer survivor. I am 85 and have been blessed with a wonderful Surgeon and Oncologist. Also, prayers and good wishes from hundreds of friends and of course my family. I am scheduled for a CT scan next month. I pray God's blessing on all you survivors!
While going through chemotherapy, you use all your strength and faith to survive. After treatment, a survivor must make a decision to go forward and embrace a newness of hope. Choose a new direction in your life, and find what you need to stay focus and happy.
What keeps me going? My faith,my family, my friends and the positive postings i read.
I was diagnosed in Dec, 2010 of limited small cell lung cancer. My primary Dr. ordered a chest xray after he diagnosed me with walking pneumonia. The chest xray showed a mass in my right lung.
After several visits to a lung specialist and many tests, i was diagnosed with cancer.
I had 6 weeks of radiation and 4 cycles of chemo treatments. Before i ended my treatments at the end of Feb,2011, my pet scans were coming back showing the tumor was completely gone and the 1 lymph node that was affected was also clear of cancer.
I repeat my scans every 3 months. Each time i wait for my results is hell.
I feel very blessed but at the same time i have struggled with anger,confusion,fear,depression, chemo brain,some short term memory issues, and whay ever else you want to toss in the dog pile of issues.
I try and stay positive on my future with my faith in God,my faith with my Dr's and my determination that i am going to win!
I don't try and hide my fears from anyone, I believe if you have a great day, celebrate. If you feel yourself sliding to the fear side, talk about it with anyone you feel comfortable with.
Cancer....what does that word mean to me? It means i have something i will fear for the rest of my life. My family lives in fear of losing me. It can be hell!
What we do with ourselves is up to us. I honestly believe in my heart i will be around for a long time.
My faith, my church family, my family with prayers and words of encouragement. My oncologist talked to me about what she expected from me in regard to my attitude, excercise, food. She established us as a team and we have built a great relationship and I have confidence in her.
Cancer makes one vulnerable and one discovers that this is not just a bad state but one that brings us closer to others especially if they become vulnerable too. Strength and vulnerability, together, form a powerful combination for connection in life.
I was diagnosed with NH Lymphoma 7 years ago and have ALWAYS tried to be postitive and trust God for each and every day. I tell everyone that every day is a Gift from God and to bless Him most of all and everyone around you. You are blessed in return. When I went through my 8 weeks of treatment, I blessed all the nurses and other chemo patients with baked goods, fruit, gifts etc. I have always tried to take a bad thing and turn it around to be a blessing to everyone you meet. God has used me tremendously to touch their lives with HOPE, LOVE AND A REASON TO LIVE FOR GOD. I just had a PET scan done and have no tumors or masses and I am having a bone marrow biopsy done next week because my count is the highest it has ever been. I am trusting God for His mercy and favor and I pray that you will be blessed too.
A renewed relationship with God, and support from family and friends helped me greatly. But, one of the biggest sources of joy and comfort were my dogs.
After three surgeries, chemo, radiation, and now coming to terms with the long term side effects, I am counting my blessings for the word "long term." The memory loss is the most difficult for me, as a professional and a professor. What gives me strength?
Acknowledgement and peace that all is well in my relationships with family and friends, and that nothing else really matters. A ticking time bomb? We all are. One of us could get run over tomorrow. Every day is precious. Some sayings that have become an intrical part of my life have helped, and I hope they help some of you:
Seize the day!
Saddle your own horse!
Similar themes of living life, NOW. The last one represents being your own advocate, and taking care of yourself as best you can.
And finally, you guessed it, I have been literally saddling my own horses and riding again on my dream trail. I am happy to report I am the only female packer (and three horses and my husband/cook) making my way from Klamath Falls to Mexico on the Pacific Crest Trail. It may take me 15 more years, but who cares? I plan to be older anyway, and I am going to enjoy the ride! All of it! Hang in there everyone!!
I'm living with meningioma and have mobility in my right arm only but I've started a family newsletter because my folks are scattered across the globe & in my time of need I really missed them. I've realised that this 'project' helps to challenge me a bit, while still being able to exercise my creative abilities by writing articles, poems & completing graphics etc for each issue. I am 'differently abled' but I too can still be involved.
After surgery for gastric cancer (when my surgeon assured me I was free of cancer and did not need any oncology) I am now recovering from surgery for metastatic ovarian cancer. Once again there was no evidence of spread but I have to have regular CT scans to monitor any outbreak. I feel I am living with a ticking time bomb and struggling to regain my positivity and faith. I have recently come across your blog and it is heartening to see that many of the participants have experienced similar emotions to what I am going through now. I am encouragd by the positive comments and advice to persevere and to live in the now. With regard to PET scans, the oncology panel at the hospital where I had my latest surgery felt that a PET scan would not alter their management of the disease or the prognosis so decided against it. I live outside Cape Town in South Africa - although our medical practitioners and facilities are, I believe, world-class, we do not have the range of choice that you have in the USA.
Thank you for the support and comfort I have found in reading your posts
I find your article interesting and full of ideas. If you want to read another related article. You can find this article helpful http://meanerthanchemo.bizbuzzweekly.com/2011/05/10/the-gi-jane-story-one-woman’s-journey-through-a-lumpectomy-and-a-craniotomy Thank You in Advance!
I was diagnosed with bowel cancer in Nov 2009 and then had surgery I then had7 months chemo in 2010. During time of chemo became really ill and was hospitalised.
I am now in remission and feel it was my faith and the support of family and friends that carried me through.
I know I should be grateful that I have reached this stage but even though I try to keep busy I have had great feelings of depression and isolation. I was given so much support whilst going through treatment but now feel I am left to pick up the pieces of my life alone. I feel guilty feeling like this but realise it is probably a natural process because now know my life has changed forever. I must just give myself time.
I am a multiple-myeloma cancer survivor. Diagnosed in '09, I celebrated my 64th birthday this week because of my faith, good doctors, new medicines, and my friends and family who helped me through an auto-stem cell transplant, a brief remission, relapse, and now a second remission.. Most of us do not want to say that there is a lot of anger and disappointment and "Why me?" feelings that go with relapse. We want to be strong for you, our families and friends. I learned it was OK to be negative and to get those feelings out. I did when I hit "rock bottom" a few weeks ago as I was exhausted from side effects. Fortunately, my counselor and I worked with my feelings, and I renewed my life's purpose. Also, new protocols for MM survivors allow for a break from treatment followed by maintenance treatment with lowered chemo doses. I decided to set a record for myself: a 6 months remission! Returning to reasonable health and strength has helped my morale immensely. I got my positive outlook back and feel stronger. Also, I celebrated LIFE with my girlfriends like a little kid on my birthday...complete with balloons and singing. It FELT sooo good to have those feelings. I video Skyped with my granddaughters which renewed my hope and my "inner child." Further, prayer changes me. I know there is no cure, but by the grace of God, I have been given more days to enjoy, and I am going to live them as best as I can. Be blessed! Psalm 23
I am a uterine leiomyosarcoma survivor. I was diagnosed in August, 2010 and have had 2 pelvic surgeries since Sept. to remove localized tumors. My strength comes first from my Lord Jesus Christ and next from my family and Christian brothers and sisters. As a teacher I am blessed to have Christian students who love me and pray for me. I am also a diabetic and a heart attack survivor. Nothing about walking through the cancer experience is easy. However, I have been blessed at every bend in the road.
Exercise is the answer for me. Everytime I go to the Health Club, I come away feeling stronger and it is my own way of fighting back now that I am done with treatment. I also make my diet a priority and have found it rewarding to shop at our local Good Earth Market where I can purchase organically grown fruits, vegetables and meat. A good cardio workout along with lifting weights provides me with the serotonin my body lacks now that I am taking an aromatase inhibitor for the next five years. By strengthening my body, I am also strengthening my mind and my spirit. I sing in three singing groups every week, spend more time visiting with family and friends, attend church regularly, and laugh whenever I can. Staying positive and being thankful for every day that I wake up feeling good is a good day! After fighting breast cancer, I want to move forward with my thoughts and my actions. It is so important to appreciate renewed health and not waste it.
Hi, Im a 27 years old female and i am a 13 year survivor of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. To be honest im suffering from alot of late effects, I feel like i am alone, i have lost everyone and everything at this point all due to my health. i wish i could be as positive as the rest of you.
god bless you all
What gives me strength as a cancer survivor: my will to live, Because for me, life is beautiful - I want to live longer. Because, I believe that GOD has not forsaken me. HE provided me with excellent and supportive medical team who helped me go through the treatment period. I believe in GOD and that's what keep me going!
Cancer ruins lives, causes agony and emotional pain
I was diagnosed with colorectal cancer 9-02-08. I did 6weeks radiation and 6weeks chemotherapy. Then 1-14-09 I had to have a full colostomy. Not to be reversed. Then March 2009 I had 6month of chemotherapy. Then 1-25-10 Ihad a liver resection and gallbladder removed. Then in 2-2009 I had 4months of chemotherapy. I'm in stage 4 cancer. I went in June 2009 and had a PET scan and a CAT scan and at this time the surgeon and oncologist can't find anymore cancer. November 2010 I go to get another PET scan and CAT scan to see if there is any tumors or anything.
I am a survivor of 3 yrs. I was very positive in my thinking. My support group was amazing and I had a wonderful Dachschund that kept me going out in the middle of winter for walks. He was with me until he felt okay Mom's alright I must leave now and go to heaven which he did. He was very loyal and he new my condition and held on. I also had a lot of faith in my Doctors and personal caregivers. I now am undergoing another Mastectomy shortly but I will stand tall and I have another dog to see me through plus my attitude.
My story is about hope and a little bit about anger.
I had my colonstomy 3 yrs. ago (Please print this I want other to know my TRUE STORY), Anyhow 3 1/2 yr. I started fainting, and I was sent to a doctor who checked out my arteriies in my throat, and checked out my heart still fainting. I had all kinds of blood tests, so I thought. Well finally I was hurting real bad and my colonstomy just three years back checked out great and even doctors who did the test reviewed it and found nothing. But the new colonstomy I took showed on my upper colon bubble looking tumors...no polyps as eveyone thinks you have when the have colon cancer. I was in state4 with cancer already on my liver and one foot of my colon was cut out. I was rushed around that hosptial. So, I have found that what I read about the 10 years to develop a colon cancer is just not true, not true at all. I think it was an estimate. And some articles mentioned 15 yrs???I feel some type of cancer test should be done ever 2 1/2 yrs. even if it something like a pet scan.And about the low blood test, why hadn't that been do The medicine that work for me is avastin.
My doctor has high hopes I will beat the cancer, but I just don;t know reading that the survival rate for state 4 cancer in 5 yrs. is 8-15% Please Please do more research. Things just aren't right with the process of identify colon cancer now and the amount of time between any testing has got to be terribely wrong.Please check out EVERY blood count.
I am a two time cancer survivor. I had breast cancer 8 years ago and 4 years ago I had colon cancer. They were not related to each other. Both times I had chemotherapy and also radiation with the breast cancer. Both cancers were caught in early stages. I do my check ups faithfully and my doctor and I declare I will not have cancer again. (with fingers crossed and prayer on my lips) You talk about guilt. I have not really thought about that, but I guess in a way I do wonder why did I survive two cancers while others do not survive one? I do not like the word remission. I prefer the word cured. I went into early retirement but have now gone back to work at a different job. I will soon be 66 years old. I do not dwell on my cancer, nor do I let it define me. I am reminded from time to time what I have gone through because of others dying, my check ups, and thing like the cancer rallies which I do not participate in. People have asked me to participate and tell my story. Maybe it is too painful to do so. I also don't like to talk about it because I have this fear that if I say I am cured the cancer will return. You hear about that. People will announce a big anniversary for their cure and then the cancer comes back. My family is great! I do have a strong faith which carried me through it all. Friends are great too. I just want to live and want to get the most out of my life, helping others and loving my family.
Having worked in a pediatric hospital in the 70's, I found cancer patients & their families never complained of what life dealt them. They had great strength with treatment & courage with death. They have always been my inspiration. In 2010, in addition to what I learned from the kids & their families, having a great husband, family & friends isn't too shabby!! Equally important to me has been my radiation oncologist, nurse & radiation therapists & radiation receptionist who treated me like a friend - always had a smile, had a great sense of humor (they had too - I was their patient) and were always positive!! I only surround myself with positive people. I've never taken life seriously & don't intend to start now! My karma was to be diagnosed when I was and to know caring people. I also have the greatest dogs. I will never allow cancer to dictate my life. Being buddhist has also been a factor on how I face life.
Knowing that I am saved by the blood of Jesus Christ and that He is in total control of my life I asked just one question when I was diagnosed, "Show me how you can use me, Lord through this that I may glorify you!"
What gives me strength? I SURVIVED with the help of my doctors, wife and family, friends and most importantly by keeping my faith in GOD and loving and valuing every minute of life. I say to myself that I can still look upon the wonder of humanity, see the children - our future, the miracles of nature, birds, rivers and oceans, trees and flowers, clouds, the sun, stars - it all makes me feel better as every day awakens with sunrise and closes with sunset. I am here to see it, to hear it, to touch it and to smell it, and I can no longer get too much of it and I LOVE IT!
I was lucky enough to have a long time practice in meditation and yoga, this together with many alternative therapies (tapping, bach remedies, reiki) made my treatment and recovery more of an opportunity to learn about myself than complain and feel pain (physical and emotional) from what I expected by having cancer.
Thanks everyone for your amazing stories. I agree with the top three--family, faith, and friends. I don't have family living close, but I have come to realize how much some of them (in-laws) actually appreciate and care for me. Cancer has proven my husband to be "my rock" as someone else described hers. My spirituality has always been fairly strong, but I am making a conscious effort to put more into my practice of religious faith. I have strengthened my existing friendships, and developed closer friendships with acquaintances. Fortunately, my energy level has been fairly good allowing me to give a lot of myself to strengthening my relationships with family and friends, and any time you invest more, you earn more in return. At stage IV I may not have a lot of time left, but the I am having the time of my life. When I have a good day, I have more than that, I usually have a great day! I wrote down a poem about strength(author unknown) years ago when one of my children died. It is as follows:
Strength does not come from winning.
Your struggles develop your strengths.
When you go through hardships and
decide not to surrender, that is strength.
My beautiful bride was diagnosed with Stage 3 lung inoperable lung cancer in Apr 08. We have kept our faith and strength throughout. It has, and continues to be, a difficult journey. Yesterday they discovered 5 nodules which have appeared in the opposite lung. A setback but we continue to move forward. 3rd chemo session ahead.
I would love for folks to read her journey and sign her guestbook.
Bless those who continue to fight and please support those who stand beside them.
Faith in our Creator's promise of a paradise when life will be restored prior to mankind's fall gives me the most strength. Second, my family and very close network of friends. I had 14 people waiting for me after my bilateral masectomies. They made meals for my family for 3 weeks following. When I was nearly ready for my implants with reconstructive surgery, a friend had a "shower" for the "twins". There I received the needed encouragement to a situation no woman wants to face.
I am 47. Hodgkin's Disease 1983, 1991, Cervical Cancer in 1992, Early Stage Melanoma in 2001 and Breast Cancer in 2002. Despite so many occurences with the Big C, each encounter has strengthened me as well. My prognosis was always pretty good since all were caught early. I receive much joy when I am able to help someone through those dark days of diagnosis through treatment. The breast cancer was the biggest challenge. I can handle cutting out tumors on the inside, but outside of my body was another animal. I have read of even more side effects from radiation and am now aware of cardiac, lung disease etc. I learned to live each day and each moment. To do that well, you must face your greatest fear, the worst situation. Come to a conclusion, think it out and then put it to bed. I CAN control my mind if nothing else.That was a very good lesson. Why let worry rob me of today. Today is all any of us have for this time....until Jehovah makes all things new.
For almost 40 years I was considered a cancer survivor. At age 3 I beat cancer and for the most part, I never looked back. At age 44 I was diagonosed with stomach cancer, which as most doctors told me, I did not fit that typical cancer profile. I did what most people should not do, I went to the internet and searched for statistics, read articles and got my self into quite a depression. Not one of my doctors gave me any odds regarding the treatment other than one saying there is only one response you can take... you will survive or not and I'm telling you you will. And I stuck with that throughout my whole treatment. My other experience was the outpouring of support from my co-workers, specifically my staff that had supervised for the past 7 years. They were awesome. They were private when needed, in your face when you needed it, funny and always upbeat. Almost everyday I would get an e-mail or card from various people at work. That was my good "pill" for the day. My husband also took off the entire 9 months I was sick and became quite my nurse assistant. It was tough, make no mistake, but I made it through. I'm back at work and of course I have my daily, "what ifs" but now I'm just trying to deal with the new me. After the weight loss and my new look, it's still a bit tough getting to accept who physcially I look like. I realize that will take time and I have to be patient. But I'm here and alive and getting use to a place I never imagine
Linda asked if she was posting in the right place, because she was not sure she was considered a survivor. From our perspective, a cancer survivor is defined as anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer (in treatment, post treatment, and years beyond treatment). She also brings up another really important concern for cancer survivors, what she calls the "holding pattern". It is one of the most difficult aspects of being a person living with a cancer diagnosis...the constant monitoring, and when treatment is completed, the yearly check up and worry that the cancer might return some day. I appreciate her perspective of looking at each moment as a blessing in her life. You are all incredible in my eyes!
I'm an Aussie who found this site some yrs ago as my Family have had cancer patients for multiple generations on all sides so I was always interested in the newest treatment developments so I could pass it on to the family member facing the challenge at that particular time.Thankfully in spite of our bad family history we do have a positive survival rate mainly due to our Faith in God and also our awareness and willingness to see into anything not right with our bodies asap!! So when I was diagnosed with breast cancer April 2009 I had an existing resource to help me review and understand my options. I had a lumpectomy end of April 2009 with 4 underarm lymph glands removed 2 of which had small metases, I had a further op one week later to remove a further border around the original lumpectomy as my cancer had gone from stage 11 to stage 111 in 2wks. Thankfully this border was free of cancer as was my full body and bone scan 2 wks later, however because of the stage of my cancer a her11 positive one (hormone aggravated one), my adverse family history compounded by my Acoustic Neuroma(a non cancereous tumour of the 8th cranial nerve)op. in 1988 which had me left me with severe stroke like symptoms.Thanks to the Lord and my being positive and motivated I ended up with no visible symptoms! I had 16 lots of chemotheraphy, 20 of radiation, and have 1 yr of 3wkly herception until Aug 2010 and will be taking daily tabs for 5yrs.With Gods Help I have had very positive results so far!
Three and a half years ago, I was diagnosed and treated for anal cancer, Stage II. The standard treatment--the Nigro Protocal--is a brutal combo of chemoradiation. I was hospitalized for two weeks to treat low blood counts, radiation pain, infection. I shook hands with death and said no, no, no. Not now. My determination to not only survive but become the healthiest person I can be is supported by my saintly medical oncologist, my large family and my recent realization that God has my back. I have faith. I am profoundly grateful to be alive and active again. I have peace in my life. I am blessed beyond all measure. I have grace in my life. Family, faith, friends and my oncologist are my strengths.
I am a 2 yr breast cancer survivor. When I was diagnosed, I had no feelings, just sort of numb like it was happeninig to some one else.
I knew I would have to have surgery and elected to have a lumpectomy. I was lucky as it turned out to be stage 1 and all clear in the lymph glands. I was prepared to undergo radiation but then decided to do some research on the subject, pray and consult several other doctors. As I was 83 at the time, after much thought and prayer, I decided to forego that and have been on oral medication now for 2 years. I know I made the right decision considering my age and my faith in God to take care of me. So far i am doing ok. I try not to worry abt it tho it is in the back of my mind a lot as one can imagine. But, my faith gives me comfort and hope.
I am a survivor of Guillain- Barre Syndrome and was paralyzed from the neck down. With good therapy and a lot of work, I regained my independence only to find out two years later that I had kidney cancer. After the initial shock and surgery to remove the kidney, All I could thnk of was how lucky I am that this cancer was discovered before it was too late. Two years later I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Once again - how lucky I was to have found it so early. After a lumpectomy and radiation, I returned quickly to normal life. You guessed it - two years later my doctor found cancer in my lung, which turned out to be metastatic kidney cancer. I missed only 11 days of work for the surgery. If I hadn't followed through with regular check ups, it wouldn't have been found. Compliance with checkups and medications is essential, equal only to looking at the bright side. It keeps you alive!
I think that all cancer survivals get their strenth from the same sources, that means from their close surroundings. For me my family is on the first place, than my friends and my colleagues. What I would like to say, that we ourselves changed a lot - we began to see importance of the ordinary things and fill them with the new meaning.
I never know if "survivor" means if someone is cancer-free or lives with cancer with constant monitoring so I may be posting on the wrong place. I have three unrelated primary cancers: breast, esophageal, and colon. It has been two years since chemo/radiation. The lumpectomy appears to have gotten the tumor but I still take oral meds; I just had colon surgery and they feel like they got it early at Stage 1 so we just watch it; however, I was told by my doctor that the esophageal cancer has no cure. I have been really positive, especially since one doctor gave me 2-6 months to live three years ago! My husband is disabled but is my primary caregiver and a saint, along with our kids approaching their 30's. And friends and other family members pray as I do. I feel like only God knows when it is time for me to let go but right now is giving me a new team of doctors who monitor me every three months...so I think I am just living with cancer or in a holding pattern, which is fine with me! A good sense of humor and a new appreciation of each moment has been a blessing besides people in my life. Faith has played a giant part of my journey...and I hope you all have success stories now or in the future. There is always hope that someday researchers will be able to treat all cancers and eradicate this disease...I'm hoping to hang on until they do! Anyone experiencing cancer sees life through different eyes...patient, family, and friends. I hope mine all see hope, love a
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1999, I had two inspirations: my grandmother and my son. My grandmother faced breast cancer around 1940, and went through painful, drastic treatment , that I never had to face; yet, she beat the cancer and survived 30 more years. My son with Down syndrome was diagnosed with leukemia at age 5, and went through over 3 years of chemotherapy. It was really tough, especially when it was so hard to explain to him at such a young age. But 19 years later, he is a strong, healthy young man.
There were difficult times, to be sure, but I am truly lucky, and thankful for every day. And I had to stick around to raise my 2 children!
I am surviving cancer,one of them(I have three forms of cancer)for over 27 years. Faith and my very large family won't let me give up. The way I see it is all of us surviving cancer are a FAMILY>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I am so struck by the comments so far, most of you mention an internal source of strength. Jeff mentions education, Katie and Nancy mention their children, but in a way, these are internal. I am constantly humbled by the stories that are shared here. Having strength to get through it all seems to be a transformational process. Lois mentions this in her ability to reach out to others, as she now gives back to help others get through. So much of this is a give and take process. You all are incredible in my eyes!
I was feeling better than ever in September 2007 when I was diagnosed with Endometroid adenocarcinoma. We thought we caught it early, but total hysterectomy, plus removal of ovaries tubes, omentum and 29 lymphnodes revealed a Stage IIIC, Grade 3 cancer. The bigger blow was being told I needed internal and external radiation and six cycles of chemotherapy if I wanted to live.
All that treatment actually went much better than I thought -- no nausea or vomiting, no feeling ill -- but sheer exhastion and low blood counts.
I made it through for many reasons. My faith that God was holding me in his hand through it all, my family and a large host of friends praying and supporting me, and keeping life as "normal" as possible kept me going.
The biggest trauma has been the collateral damage from radiation and chemotherapy. I developed peripheral neuropathy in my legs, began losing my balance, my ankles fell, and nerve pain was with me all the time, even with medication. The radiation did a number on my bladder, making it atrophy and subject to frequent irritation.
So now I wear a leg brace and walking shoes and use a cane or walker when I go out of my home or take off the brace. I use a wheelchair for activities that would require a lot of standing or walking. I am working with a urologist to try to remedy some of the incontinence issues.
Treatment left its mark but also healed me. I would do it again if I had the same results. I am two years cancer free
I was diagnosed with breast cancer a year ago and my world (as I knew it) was turned upside down.
I had a lumpectomy, went through chemo and radiation and it took a lot out of me) and now what??
I have days when I feel alone and isolated. My faith has been a stronghold for me and when I wake up each day, I try to stay happy, think good thoughts and keep smiling., but the anxiety is still there. So I'm hangin' in there!
I would say that what helps is the thought that life is precious and I do not want to waste it worrying. I try to go about my day and days doing as much as I can.
I need add that this thought comes from my readings about life , faith and psychology.
I am now an 8 year survivor of breast cancer. At the time of diagnosis, I was devastated, scared, & angry. But my husband was like a "rock" beside me & never left my side through surgery & all treatments. Then all the prayers of family & friends made me feel so calm plus a wonderful medical team who gave me confidence in what was happening to me. I knew my faith was strong but didn't know how strong it was. I just knew I could make it through everything. Before diagnosis, I could never have spoken out to others, like I can now, to try to help other women with breast cancer or talked so freely about my faith. Although I pray to not have breast cancer again, I have grown to be a much stronger person than before my diagnosis of breast cancer.
Oh this is such a process...I'm not sure where I get strength from (if I even do). i still haven't completely accepted this diagnosis of breast cancer. When I was diagnosed...I thought, "take it out because my life is busy and I have to much on the go". I'm done radiation now and I feel empty.
I have been in treatment for malignant pleural effusion...breast cancer from 6 yrs ago that has now
gone to my left lung....continual chemo as tolerated...
live in S.Ca. Anyone with this diagnosis...how are you?
I was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a mastectomy a year ago. My strength came from my sister-in-law who had just been diagnosed and had surgery to remove her colon. She is now fighting for her life with a staff infection in the blood. She went through chemo and was always calling to see how I was rather then worry about herself. It breaks my heart now to see the one that kept me going and now she is down and we don't know if she will survive or not. She still has some cancer in her body, but the medication they were giving her caused other problems. Her stomach was filling with fluid, they said from the cancer cells, we think by them having to drain the fluid all the time that is where she got the staff infection. But she is still my strength and she knows it. That is what keeps me going, her smile.
My faith, my infant son and my mom was my source of strength. I HAD to live and was DETERMINED to live to raise my son. Jacksonville Mayo Clinic helped in saving my life through a bone marrow transplant. I am cancer free since 2007! Thank God for healing, medical teams and DONORS!
The source of my strength was being an educated cancer survivor. Once I was diagnosed I sought out everything about cancer and its treatment options to include sitting down with survivors and discussing for many hours - how to live with cancer and survive after treatment. I live today in the fullness of the kindred spirit of those whose battle with cancer overtook their lives (my Mother, Father and Aunt). I have been cancer free since 2007 and I live to encourage others who may come to face this life challenge. I educate those who need a source of strength that they may endure a fearless fight to live life to the fullest which ever stage of diagnosis they maybe going through.
Live today, tomorrow and into the future ..is my daily mantra.
- Surviving everyday with a strong source of strength.
The people I love, my infant daughter was number one...She needs me to be alive for her, and to be strong for her every day...I woke every night that she needed me to, sick, or not. I drew stregnth and satisfaction from caring for her, and doing a really good job of it...I also had ALOT of emotional support from my parents, and my spouse...
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