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BridgetO

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  1. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Tom Galli in A Life Well Lived   
    Tom, I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. I second everything Steff said about how you and your description of your friend's like and your relationship about being a much needed inspiration for acceptance and living LIFE.
    Bridget 
  2. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Tom Galli in A Life Well Lived   
    Tom, I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. I second everything Steff said about how you and your description of your friend's like and your relationship about being a much needed inspiration for acceptance and living LIFE.
    Bridget 
  3. Like
    BridgetO reacted to Steff in A Life Well Lived   
    Tom,
    I am sorry for the loss of your friend.  It sounds like she lived a life we all should strive for.  That being said, thank you for this.  Living a full life DESPITE lung cancer isn't something I would have ever accepted 1 year ago for my mom.  Accepting that we will likely only ever hear "Your cancer is stable" and never hear "There is no evidence of disease" has also been hard for me to except.  But hearing stories like this and meeting wonderful folks at the HOPE Summit has helped me to begin to come to acceptance.  My mom and I's daily phone conversations have turned from lengthy discussions about lung cancer to what creation did she work on or what kind of shenanigan did my dad cause.  It's a much needed break for the both of us.  I appreciate hearing how 2 tenured lung cancer survivors talked about all things "life" instead of all things "lung cancer".  So once again, thank you.  Your post put a smile on my face and solidified that it is okay to go on with life.
    Take Care,
    Steff
  4. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Susan Cornett in Another recurrence, another call to Mom and Dad   
    You are entitled to a meltdown whenever you need/chose/are overcome by one! I'm glad today is a better day.
    Bridget O
  5. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Steff in There are days....   
    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
  6. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Steff in There are days....   
    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
  7. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Steff in There are days....   
    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
  8. Like
    BridgetO reacted to Steff in There are days....   
    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
  9. Like
    BridgetO reacted to Tom Galli in There are days....   
    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
  10. Like
    BridgetO reacted to KatieB in There are days....   
    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.
     
  11. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Tom Galli in My Friend Randy   
    Tom,
    I'm so sorry for the loss of your dear friend. Your post is a wonderful tribute to him.
    Bridget O
  12. Like
    BridgetO reacted to Susan Cornett in Chemo Doesn't Work and Oncologists Get Rich   
    Almost every day, a friend on Facebook shares a story that doctors won't cure cancer because they and big pharma make too much money.  Well, guess what?  Those drugs and that surgeon saved my life and I am eternally grateful for the time I have.  Without either of those, I likely wouldn't be here today.  I have looked into other options, but certainly not in place of but instead in conjunction with my treatment.  Part of being your own advocate is researching treatment and determining what is snake oil and what's real.
  13. Like
    BridgetO got a reaction from Tom Galli in Social Security Disability by Disapproval   
    I have in the past helped a number of people with SS disability applications, or SSI disability .(Social Security is based on what you paid in to the system; SSI is available if you haven't paid enough into the system but have very limited income and resources--the disability standard for both programs is essentially the same) Tom's advice is excellent. Two things I'd like to add. First, submit the most complete documentation and information  you can at the initial application. If you have a case manager through any agency, ask for their help with this, or whether they can refer you to any other local agency that can help at the initial application stage. Second, the Socail Security Administration will probably send a questionnaire about your abilities/disabilitie to a person you name in your application. You need to be sure that this person knows that this is coming and is also aware of the disability standards (as Tom says in #3 that you should be). It can be difficult for some people to fill these out for others because they either want to maximize the extent of the disabilty to be helpful  (as in "she can't do anything for herself and requires total care") or minimize it because they are in denial or trying to be optiimistic. (as in  " she is a wonderful person who tries to do everything for herself and only needs a little help"). It's important for the person filling out the form to be detailed and realistic and as Tom says- be sure to include treatment side effects, especially when treatment is long-term.
    Social Security is a really convoluted system, so if you can find someone to help who has experience with it, so much the better. And in any case, be sure to meet any appea deadlines and don't give up!
     
     
     
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