• LizQ's Avatar

    LizQ posted an update

    I have to say, I consider myself fortunate. I know several women (including my mother and two co-workers) who have been through breast cancer successfully and are vibrant, healthy women today. *Never once* did I consider my breast cancer to be life-threatening. To be honest, it was a nuisance. I work in an unusual teaching job where it is difficult to replace me - and to write sub plans. It takes almost as much time to write them as it does to teach the class, where i would rather be, anyway.

    I am part of about 4-5 circles of friends because I am an active part of my community. Due to my local involvement, I had a lot of support for driving, meals, and especially reminders to take it easy and ask for help (something that is *not* easy for me to do, being a very independent woman).

    There are a lot of stories out there from people who have had an incredible life challenge due to their cancers, and I need to let people know that not all stories are like that.

    The three most important things to remember, I believe, are:
    --Do your research with a realistic mind. Don't get freaked out by the horror stories; instead, look for medical data and scientific articles. Look for the success stories.
    --Keep a positive attitude. You WILL be successful in your treatment, and it WILL all go smoothly. It's just a little annoying that you have to do this right now.
    --LAUGH. Bring friends who make you laugh to your appointments and surgeries. They will keep up your mood, the nurses and doctors will be more friendly, surgery will go better, and you will heal faster. My best friend and I "kept the nurses in stitches." :)

    1 Comment
    • Nonnie917's Avatar
      Nonnie917

      You have very good advice and some of it I followed. I did a lot of research on my cancer which fortunately was discovered so early that they got it all. I had a double mastectomy. I don't have any friends around here that could keep people or me laughing. I suffer from bi-polar disorder which causes agoraphobia so I don't leave the house unless I have to. My one good friend that makes me laugh lives in CA and we talk on the phone about once a month and she can get me to laugh real good. Your advice is very wise and thank you for posting it. Others will benefit from it I am sure.

      almost 5 years ago
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    LizQ shared an experience

    Drug or Chemo Therapy (Tamoxifen)

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    LizQ shared an experience

    Decision Point (Reconstruction technique): I was given the option of either the T-flap procedure or the implant. I chose the T-flap. It made sense to me - it uses my own tissue, and can be treated if there is any infection. I had only one side to deal with, so this was the best decision.

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    LizQ shared an experience

    Celebration (Successful Surgery): All cancer was removed through the mastectomy, nothing was found in sentinal lobes or surrounding tissue, and both (yes, two) tumors were biologically separate, so there was no sign of spreading.

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    LizQ shared an experience

    Procedure or Surgery (Mastectomy)

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    LizQ shared an experience

    Procedure or Surgery (Breast Reconstruction (Flap)): The hardest part was that they weren't sure I had enough tissue, since I am fairly thin. They tried to add fat to the existing breast, but it all dissipated. Turns out they had enough fat: they had to reduce the new breast 3 times and it's still larger than the natural one.