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I know many lung cancer survivors who feel this way too.  As a survivor- I also feel this way a lot. It's surreal.  The what-ifs are dangerous...and comparing this life with the one you used to have is also a bad thing to do.  

I guess it's about taking things a day at a time until this life becomes your new normal.  The struggle is that cancer happened to you...it wasn't a choice you made...but now you're tasked with surviving it and making life good again.

Many hugs for you.  Hope today is a better day.

 

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Susan,

Unfortunately, I still get hit right between the eyes.  Case in point, I've had a nagging congested chest condition with a "dry patch" in my throat since mid May.  My GP ordered and ENT endoscope consult followed by an MRI.  So alarm bells are ringing in my head!  Recurrence, even after long periods of NED is common.  Living with the threat is partly finding one's new normal, but the threat is always hanging around my mind and effects my day to day life.  For example, I pay close attention to medical expense and medical evacuation benefits on the travel insurance policy I now purchase for every international vacation.  And, I still have that scanziety drill for my two scheduled oncology consultations a year.

Lung cancer really is part of my life.  It is ever present in my mind.  Sometimes, I am overwhelmed by its reality.  My only solutions is to....

Stay the course.

Tom

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Susan,

I read your post a few days ago and it really hit me, but I didn't have the words or thoughts of how I wanted to reply since I am not the cancer survivor and don't want to make everything about me.  But I too, as a care advocate for my mom, feel the nagging thoughts in my everyday activities.  And honestly, I think you all do so much better in dealing with those nagging thoughts than I do.  I will use my mom as an example...I speak to her everyday via phone.  Yesterday happened to be the first day we did not talk about cancer, how she is feeling, upcoming appointments, etc for nearly a year.   I had decided after reading your post that I would not be the one to bring up cancer in our phone visits unless something major was going on (I really had to look at what I consider to be MAJOR because I think EVERYTHING is MAJOR!!!). I realized that I was probably putting my nagging thoughts onto her and that is the last thing she needs.  And voila, when I did not bring up cancer she did not either! So, although I cannot help with any "words of wisdom" in regard to dealing with nagging thoughts (since I totally suck at it!!!), I want to let you know that you are not alone. And I also want to say thank you...although I am sure it wasn't your intention, you helped me to realize how I can be unintentionally placing my baggage onto my mom when I really try hard not to.

I hope that those nagging thoughts lessen for you and for all survivors.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Take Care,

Steff

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I think both survivors and caregivers want to avoid unlioading their baggage on each other. It's inevitable that we do that some though. One thing I love about these forums is it gives me a place I can unload some stuff without unduly alarming my spouse. I know she wants to make things better for me, but at times I just need to vent or complain or share anxieties. Here others have been through a lot of the same stuff and will understand without feeling responsible or worried. Thanks everybody for  being here!

Bridget O

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Thank you all for your thoughtful comments.  I guess, after two years, I'm still adjusting to the dreaded "new normal".  There are many aspects of this site that I enjoy, but coming here to write what is on my mind is probably the best.  My husband understands but you all really understand.  

Wishing you a happy day!

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Susan,

Since receiving the lung cancer diagnosis last summer, I have come to realize that no matter what I feel on the inside, it really is inside me. People do not look at me and see differences, because the scars are hidden. Sharing information with others who are dealing with difficult situations, and/or responding on these forums, has been extremely beneficial. I try to live my life with a smile on my face and recognize that there are many people in the world who need support because their situation is even more difficult than mine. When I go about my day, I can function in my "new normal" and feel quite well physically and emotionally. It's leading up to that next scan that the anxiety sets in..but as Tom said in his post, to stay the course is so important. I wish I knew what else to say. As KatieB said, we did not choose cancer, but once faced with it, we have to figure out how to beat it, stay strong, and move forward. I'm with you and your struggles!!!

 

Ro

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On 6/5/2018 at 10:07 AM, KatieB said:

I know many lung cancer survivors who feel this way too.  As a survivor- I also feel this way a lot. It's surreal.  The what-ifs are dangerous...and comparing this life with the one you used to have is also a bad thing to do.  

I guess it's about taking things a day at a time until this life becomes your new normal.  The struggle is that cancer happened to you...it wasn't a choice you made...but now you're tasked with surviving it and making life good again.

Many hugs for you.  Hope today is a better day.

 

Katie, I am out of likes for the day, but this really hit home to me today, with hubby's stage iv dx yesterday and our 1 year wedding anniversary coming up in two days. Trying to balance "how many of those things we were going to get around to one day do we try to squish in now?",  and hoping we don't have to squish them too much", and still being really pissed off that the life were building is going to look so much different and likely be so much shorter in duration than we had thought. 

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