Life after a cancer diagnosis

Posted by azkidney57 @azkidney57, Sep 29, 2019

My nephrectomy was 4 months ago life is moving on. I have been feeling OK as of late. Physically I almost feel like “me” before the cancer. Emotionally I realize that things are now changed forever. In October ,which is here, I will meet my new oncologist. He will order “scans” and blood work so the cycle of surveillance begins for me. I was told that for the next 2 years I would have scans and blood work. Hopefully my cancer will not return but it just may. There is no way to tell how things will go. I was told that due to my tumor size I am at higher risk for recurrence. I will hope for the best. Many of you have already traveled the cancer trail some are just beginning the journey. Where ever you are with your cancer there is always hope. There may be pain and discomfort but we must fight to beat the beast that is cancer. I want to think of scans as “positive” in hopes of quelling my anxiety “scanxiety”. I have scan anxiety right now. A sense of dread intertwined with fear of the unknown. I don’t like the drive to the cancer center it tends to fill me with much stress. I don’t like checking in for appointments, the same questions asked, the same answers given. I am a cancer patient at a cancer center and that doesn’t sit well with me. I have an ID card with my name on it reminding me I am a member of a new club I never thought I would be be a part of! Faces are becoming familiar at the cancer center. At this point of my journey, I feel no comfort in the “new“familiar. It feels very foreign and not part of me. It’s been 4 months that is not very long since the cancer “ officially” invaded my life. Yet in many ways it feels like an eternity. So much has happened in those 4 months. I am grateful that my panic stage is over. I do feel less anxious in general. I am grateful for this site and for everyone who has given me insightful advise and direction. I find it most helpful! I feel supported which is very much appreciated. We all need to feel support! There are so many of us out there! There is strength in numbers!

@gingerw – we have forest/woods behind us and if the windows are open I hear the birds wake up and start gibberjabbering amongst themselves. Yes, there is much to be grateful for. And I'm feeling very warmed by your thoughts. Thank you.

REPLY
@IndianaScott

I was out walking the pup today and came around the corner to this. Wanted to share a bit of color and beauty here today.
Cheers to all!

Jump to this post

Thanks for posting this!

REPLY
@azkidney57

I think people, us , who are challenged by a cancer, develop a tolerance to adversity. At first there is the panic that shields and is a defense mechanism. You work through the panic then your life, your new life, begins. That is how I see it. The person I once was has changed. Priorities shift or change altogether. I am getting to know the “new” me. This is the “journey”. I met a man and he asked me out for coffee and my response was:”I will ask her(me) if she wants to go”. I am that disconnected from the new “me” right now. I see this as dealing with the adversity, the challenge, the cancer. I am a work in progress. I am in protective mode. Whether this is wrong or right who knows. I just know that for me right now I need to get to know the changed “me”. I take things in steps. I live one day at a time. I am most annoyed right now with the frivolous and most touched by the simple things. The sun coming up each day is beautiful and calming. I listen to birds and that is wonderful. My dog is a great comfort. He seems to know when I need him more. A hug from a friend feeds my soul! A smile from a stranger acknowledges me and I like that. I read posts on this site and it is nourishing. It satisfies my need for affirmation. I feel validated. Happy anniversary to you! You are still here and that is a very good thing. You are a survivor! Thank you so very much for sharing.

Jump to this post

I love your comment about developing "a tolerance to adversity." This is so true. Thank you for that great thought, @azkidney57

REPLY
@IndianaScott

Hi @merpreb I find this an interesting discussion.

All I can add, from the perspective of my wife's war is this — celebrate and relish in whatever it is you are able to do.

Easier said than done, I know! Often it is easier to mourn what it is we've lost than relish what we have left. Personally I've found this true after my stroke — many times I catch myself complaining about what I can't see and forget to laud what I still can.

I know by necessity my wife and I were forced to greatly simplify our lives due to her cancer. Much because of her physical and mental limitations, some by my lack of ability to manage all the demands of caregiving with other things I'd have been doing at the time, and some by the financial burdens. The journey is daunting, but by keeping it simple, became a tad less so for us.

Strength, courage, and peace.

Jump to this post

@IndianaScott, You are right about simplicity. I've found myself enjoying it rather than fighting it. It takes time to develop an appreciation of simplicity, but it feels really good when you arrive there!

REPLY

I was diagnosed by a team of doctors in 2015 with stage 4 prostate cancer that had moved into the lymph nodes and bone marrow. I was told I had 3 months to live. Four years later God’s plan of a 99%recovery has lead to helping, coaching and giving hope to cancer patients and their caregivers all over the world. I am now engaged to the love of my life who I met do to me journey. Hannah is thriving with stage 4 breast cancer. Now that I was lead to Mayo Connect I hope we can help others.

REPLY

Cancer is scary and unpredictable, but we have God who is steady and loving. Try to be as positive as possible. My doctor said I have come this far because of my attitude. Praying for the best for you.

REPLY
@IndianaScott

I was out walking the pup today and came around the corner to this. Wanted to share a bit of color and beauty here today.
Cheers to all!

Jump to this post

So pretty – thanks for sharing

REPLY
@hannahkeels

I was diagnosed by a team of doctors in 2015 with stage 4 prostate cancer that had moved into the lymph nodes and bone marrow. I was told I had 3 months to live. Four years later God’s plan of a 99%recovery has lead to helping, coaching and giving hope to cancer patients and their caregivers all over the world. I am now engaged to the love of my life who I met do to me journey. Hannah is thriving with stage 4 breast cancer. Now that I was lead to Mayo Connect I hope we can help others.

Jump to this post

I am so happy for you. We have an awesome God

REPLY

Hi @azkidney57 @kathleenkin, just checking in. How are you doing?

REPLY

Sympathizing with u my friend – I was just diagnosed 2 months ago with T1 HG bladder tumor, had 2 biopsies, now going in to see what treatment I need. It is so overwhelming to me to think of where I was 2 months ago and now my life is forever changed. Life is too precious to give up – I will do whatever it takes to keep going. Good luck to you in your journey

REPLY
@texascitylady

Sympathizing with u my friend – I was just diagnosed 2 months ago with T1 HG bladder tumor, had 2 biopsies, now going in to see what treatment I need. It is so overwhelming to me to think of where I was 2 months ago and now my life is forever changed. Life is too precious to give up – I will do whatever it takes to keep going. Good luck to you in your journey

Jump to this post

@texascitylady That type of diagnosis really is overwhelming. I remember when I was diagnosed with late-stage cirrhosis, it really shook me up. I was fortunate in that everything worked out well with an eventual liver transplant, but there was cancer in my liver so now I continue to have MRIs to make sure it had not metastasized. I have them once a year. It was supposed to be in April but was delayed of course so now I go tomorrow.

Please let us know how you are doing and what the treatment plan will be. We are with you in spirit.
JK

REPLY

yes, there is strength in numbers and it helps to know we are not alone of this walk thru cancer. It's my second time so I'm at peace, but the first time, I was angry, praying, not yet- not yet!!! Now, I know it is out of my hands and I will become a pincushion but we always have faith and hope and hugs!

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.