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Dear Donna G -
Thank you for your post! Until today, I have been unable to find anyone with a similar cancer journey. I have very supportive family, friends and community for the most part - so I am very grateful for all of them. The town I live in is very small, and their is no support group. I have been on a waiting list for over a month and half to see a therapist... I have felt very alone!
YOUR STORY - WOW! Mine is almost exactly the same! Diagnosed on July 14, 2016 with adenocarcinoma, NSCLC, with an approximate 5x5x4.5 cm tumor in my right upper lung. Butted up against the middle of my chest very high and very large. Right upper lobectomy performed on Aug 10th. In addition, they removed 6 lymph nodes from my chest and 5 of the 6 had metastatic cancer cells. Luckily, this was all caught early; it had not spread any further. I just completed (yesterday) my 3rd of 4 rounds of chemo. Then I will do five straight weeks of radiation therapy. My burning question is this... did you have targeted radiation on your center chest? What type of symptoms did you have? Did you have any permanent heart or lung damage / problems? My mother died shortly after her radiation treatments, but her cancer had spread. Unfortunately, she also had pulmonary fibrosis as well, which I do too, but mine hasn't spread too bad yet. My biggest fear is that I will have permanent damage to other organs, and my lungs are already compromised. Thank you so much for your info, this has made my day!! The prognosis they gave me is about a 28% chance of survival, but I don't let that bother me. I will fight every day, regardless of that number, for my husband, kids and grand baby, plus my sisters and friends!
Monica and Laura,
I absolutely understand where you are. After I finished chemo, when we were waiting to check out my thyroid issue, I felt good. Top of the world! I had a clean chest CT in early July. But then I received news in early August that shook me to my core. Mentally, I had started to give up. I was worried about my husband and parents and who wanted what of my belongings. I cried constantly, and realized I needed help. I met a woman with Stage 4 melanoma with mets to her spine and she said "I ain't going out like that!" I loved that attitude so I talked to my oncologist about the mental battle and he put me on anti-depressants. It's not for everyone but I have had a much healthier approach to my daily life. I got choked up a few weeks back while on vacation, but other than that, no crying jags. No pity parties. I'm making plans for the future. I'm not going down without a fight. I pray you both find some peace and inner butt-kicking strength.
i can completely relate to your post as I write this on my phone from lying on my bed with deep anxiety. I find it so hard to stay in the present and not worry about my mortality sometimes. It really is a constant rollercoaster ride. It makes me less self critical to read your post and know that I'm not alone. I do manage to have good days when my fears are not hounding me and I can do stuff that distracts me from thinking about having cancer like playing with the puppies at the shelter where I volunteer or making jewelry. Sometimes when I hear on the news about people dying suddenly from accidents or violence, I realize that people without cancer also face death but they didn't expect it so soon.