• papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    It is now a year since I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was a rough journey but I came through it with a positive attitude and lots of caring by friends.Everything was going along after chemo. I started hormone therapy, got my energy back and began to rebuild my life. Then just 3 weeks ago, my internist's nurse took my blood pressure in the wrong arm. I protested but it was already too late. That's all it took.

    I am very angry and depressed. Has anyone else had these feelings? I have begun treatment but the worst of it is my daily self-massage which I find very difficult and time-consuming. I find myself resisting doing it. I have not begun wearing a sleeve but will soon. I am writing a letter to my Dr telling her of my experience and the resulting consequences which I will have to live with my whole life. I think the nurse should have known better or there should have been an alert on my chart.

    It is all very upsetting and knowing there is no end to it is very discouraging.. I know others live with this condition and I must find my way, too. At the moment, I am just adjusting and very distressed. Please share your feelings, experience and how you manage the daily massage, wearing the sleeve and gauntlet and adjusting your attitude.
    Thank you for putting up with my complaints.

    1 Comment
    • DeanaBeana's Avatar
      DeanaBeana

      I'm very sorry your having these problems. I've never gone through any of this personally. But I have family and friends who have. One of my best friends who is 48 yrs. had a double mastectomy with breast reconstruction and she too suffers from Lymphedema. She couldn't afford the sleeves because her insurance wouldn't cover them. I know the times are difficult for you. I wish there was something I could do to ease your feelings of sadness. Maybe you should post your question you asked in the QUESTIONS tab. This way the community will see and someone will come along and give you some advice and help. There are some wonderful people on the site. Just ask questions and they will help you even if just to talk. I hope today is a better day for you. Best of luck!

      over 8 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Hello Everyone,

    Now that I am passed chemo, I have wonderful news. I saw my radiation oncologist and she recommends against radiation, in my case...doesn't think the benefits are worth the risks. I agree. So, now it's the hormone therapy. I now nothing about it and that makes me uneasy. I will educate myself through What Next and other sources

    Thanks for all your prayers and support.

    1 Comment
    • DaveWaz's Avatar
      DaveWaz

      That is wonderful news!!!! I bet that made you plenty happy =)

      almost 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Hello Everyone,

    I am very glad to report that I am recovering from my last chemo session. It is so good to get that part of the journey behind me. All of you who still face chemo, you will have a triumphant day, too! I hope it is very soon.

    The next stage is radiation and it is worrisome. The experience is hard for me to go into. After the start, it will probably be less so. I will take faith along with me.

    I wish you all courage and an uplifted heart on your continuing journey.
    Papayagirl

    1 Comment
    • DaveWaz's Avatar
      DaveWaz

      You are an inspiration to so many! Good for you - no more chemo!

      almost 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    What is the difference between the 2 different types of breast reconstruction?

  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    I am almost through my chemo treatments (one more to go) and facing radiation.
    Can anyone tell me about fatigue as a side effect of the radiation? I work just 2 afternoons and evenings a week and I'm wondering if I the fatigue from radiation will interfere with my working. I am quite scared about the radiation. Please share your words of wisdom.

  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Hello Everyone, I have now had my 2nd chemo treatment of taxotere and cytoxan. It is quite a heavy dose, so I go in only every 3 weeks. I will only have 6 of these treatments, so only 4 more to go. Th first time I had some aches and pains and a lot of fatigue but they didn't begin until 3 days after. This time, I started feeling badly about 30 hours later. A new side effect is now present...neuropathy, where your fingers and toes get numb. I also had the ice mittens on hands and feet again this time. Mighty chilly.

    Will check in again when I'm feeling better. Lots of love and hugs to everyone.

    1 Comment
    • kamelio's Avatar
      kamelio

      Thinking of you and hope you are doing well=)

      about 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Well, everybody, in 2 days I begin chemo. I'm scared but I remain calm and positive for the most part. Having my feet and hands in ice water(to counteract damage to my nails) throughout the treatment is difficult to get my mind around but I suspect I will "get it" the first time I experience it! I am grateful I will have a friend stay with me during the treatment. With God and prayer, all my friends and you, I will get through the treatment. Will let you know how it goes.

    1 Comment
    • kamelio's Avatar
      kamelio

      Thinking of you today.. hope you are doing well. Please keep us posted! Hugs :)

      over 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Hello, it's time for an update. I have been holding my own an even keeping myself from falling into a depression. However, I was thrown a curve last Friday when my oncologist told me that a nuclear medicine test had revealed a problem with my heart. It is a hard pill to take . It seems one thing after another sets me back. She will now change my drug from Taxol to Taxotere (?). I will begin chemo this coming Friday after a false start a week ago. The sooner I begin, the sooner I'll finish, though, of course, I'm not looking forward to it. Will see a cardiologist this month and will keep you posted. Thanks for all the support you have given me. I don't know if I would be doing so well without your help.

  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Jenny, I am still following you and loved your most recent post. It was so informative and relieved some of my angst about chemo. I will have my port put in in 4 days (ouch??), then begin chemo with A and C (like you, I believe) on March 2nd for 6 months. How it works is a mystery to me and so is my reaction which you help me envision, even considering our reactions are unique. Your posts are so detailed that I feel more comfortable reading them because you give me such a great picture of what to expect. Strangely I feel connected to you, even though we have not been in touch very much. Our journeys are similar, I feel.
    I'm wishing you that your final chemo treatment goes very well and that your reaction is a breeze. I have been communicating with your daughter and would love to hear from you.

    Take the best of care.

    Papayagirl

    1 Comment
    • JennyMiller's Avatar
      JennyMiller

      Papayagirl, I am so glad that my posts have been of some help. How did it go having the port put in? Starting Chemo was also a major challenge for me -- and scary -- but once I got started, it became a routine part of the battle! I have completed the four A & C Sessions. This coming Thursday I will have the first of four sessions of Taxol. I am a little nervous as to what side effects I will experience. They say it is kinder than the A and C. However, I did not have nausea with the A & C --- and I did not have the bone pain from the Neulesta shot (I took Claritin). I understand that I may experience joint pain from the Taxol and that Claritin does not seem to help. Once you get into the Chemo Routine and know what symptoms to expect on what day and once you get past the trauma of the hair loss -- the apprehension will be gone -- time will start passing a little faster -- and your focus will change from the dread of chemo to looking ahead to better days when this will all be behind you. As you move forward and try to stay positive, the dark moments and tears are less and less. I do feel a kinship with you -- and will be following you. Be assured of my prayers, friendship and support.
      Jenny

      over 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Hello Everyone.

    I wanted to update you all about where I am on this journey. I now know my cancer treatment. It is a very aggressive stand and I am very fearful of it. I will have 6 months of chemo, 6.5 weeks of radiation and 5-10 years (!) of hormone therapy. I'm trying to focus on just the first step and on one day at a time but it is difficult not to look into the future when fear grips me. Can anyone tell me their experience of chemo? I will have my port put in on 2/22 and my firt chemo treatment will be 3/2...not very far away. Here's to the good fight!
    Papayagirl

    2 Comments
    • DaveWaz's Avatar
      DaveWaz

      Hi papayagirl,

      Thank you for keeping us posted. We''ll be supporting you every step of the way. You might want to post a question to the network about chemo experiences. You can do this by clicking on the "Ask Network" link on your logged in home page or the "Questions" link at the top of this page.

      Additionally, here is a link to a search I did on chemo-related questions that have been asked. I thought that might be helpful: http://whatnext.com/questions?utf8=✓&question_query=chemo

      You can do this.

      over 9 years ago
    • kamelio's Avatar
      kamelio

      Hi there, Mom is having her 4th chemo as I am writing this. I know you have followed her postings also. She has had what they call the "red devil" these first for times (every two weeks). She has had minimal side effects. She is looking wonderful and doing very well. She can even stop to go out to lunch on her way home from chemo!! Please please know we are here for support, prayers, anything you need. I know my mom will be able to fully answer your questions better than me, but wanted you to know I am thinking of you also=)

      over 9 years ago
  • papayagirl's Avatar

    papayagirl posted an update

    Paprika, thank you so much for your pre-op tips. I would never think of button down front shirts or a sports bra. I am getting ready but your experience does calm me. I will be looking forward to your experience of chemo. I wish you the very best experience. I too will have a mastectomy, maybe double, on Jan 30th. I would like to have immediate reconstruction but it may not be possible since we do not know the status of the lymph nodes. I will see a plastic surgeon on the 24th to discuss options.

    I would love to be a phone buddy. Your email was redacted in your message so I'm not sure how to reach you. My phone number is[phone number redacted]. We'll see if that works.

    Take good care. I feel easily connected to you. Perhaps, we know each other.

    Carole

    3 Comments
    • kamelio's Avatar
      kamelio

      check out my mom's board she has great tips and very detailed description on her first two chemo treatments. I'm sure it would help you alot=) Her name on here is JennyMiller

      over 9 years ago
    • Paprika's Avatar
      Paprika

      ok, so one comment states we can contect to each other if we click on the "exchange email link", but I can't find it.humm.. I will contact the web hosts and see how we can exchange phone numbers...

      over 9 years ago
    • DaveWaz's Avatar
      DaveWaz

      Hi paprika - the way to do this is to go to the home page of the person you want to connect with by clicking on his/her name - and then on the top by their journey click "exchange email." That should do it.

      over 9 years ago