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Today, I met someone with lung cancer


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Now wait, before there's any hurt feelings from anyone I met at the Michigan Bash, let me set a qualifier on that statement...

Today, in my normal life, I met someone with lung cancer. This hasn't happened to me before, even though I know all of you here, I still felt rather isolated and alone in the north country here.

I've had some allergy issues lately, lots of fluids running out of my face (eyes, ears, etc.) and coughing, sneezing and misery. I spoke to a pharmacist yesterday to see if I could take any OTC medication. Nope, not with Clarinex and Levothroid in my system (and I take 'em daily). His suggestion was Flonase and a bucket! :roll:

Last night before going to bed, I broke out the Flonase. This morning, I could breathe through my nose - BUT, when I coughed, I noticed where all that "stuff" had gone. I called the doctor's office first thing this morning and her usual nurse called me back and squeezed me in...

When I got to the office, the usual nurse took me back, but a "floater" took my vitals. Since I'm just really congested I got the "hypochondriac look" - or so I thought. (See, my doctor told me to call anytime I feel congestion in my chest, etc.) Today, I noticed that my "file" is actually TWO volumes. Wonderful to be special at such a young age.

While running through the symptoms and complaints, I just told her why I came in for congestion - and she asked me about my surgery, but really ODD questions. One was "Wasn't that the WORST ever pain you have felt in your life?" Uh, yeah... "Do you get anxious around scan time?" Uh, yeah...

Then she says "Me too". She asked how big my cut was and told me how big hers was - she was in the hospital for ten days to get the pain under control (beat my nine days by 24 hours!). She said, "I could never IMAGINE being in that kind of pain, no matter how I moved it hurt" (Uh, yeah...)

She told me the doctors know, but she doesn't really tell people about it.

The first person I've met face-to-face that I've had this rotten thing in common with. I'm not so alone in my little corner of the world - but I don't think that's as comforting as I thought it would be. I'm not alone, but that means that I'm not alone, that someone else feels the same crappy feelings, the same fear...and that's just not so cool, ya know?

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You know Snow,

I bet she was as excited to meet you as you were to meet her.

You probably made her day.

Sounds as if she is pretty isolated in her illness too. Probably because it is "lung" cancer...as if lung cancer is a dirty word.

I hope that you will be able to be in touch with her again somehow. This meeting may just well have been for her benefit to meet you...you never know.

ps. how is that baby doing? Good, I hope.

love, Cindi o'h

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In the last week I have met 4 people who have had lung cancer affect their lives, 2 of my new neighbors whose spouses had lc, a woman I used to work with, her mother and one of my mover's father.

Is it more prevalent, or I am more aware? I talk about it a lot. Let's get it out of the closet. Breast cancer gets a ton of $$$ because people got noisey, let's get noisey.

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I've often felt all the same feelings, if this is the most common cancer where is everyone???? I still have not met w/anyone with it ither. I have found having cancer itself though is kind-of a leveling rod for anyone whose had it. I've never felt judged or deserving of it by anyone else even if they were colon,breast, etc.

I met up w/a dental hygienist and she told me her story of 15 years ago and was really emotional after all these years just visiting w/me and it all coming back. Like your nurse, she was able to confide in me and ya know, there's that bond there after you are a 'survivor'. Doesn't matter what kind-of cancer you had. It all hurts.


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Hi Becky,

Did you every talk to your Onchologist about other people he treats with LC. Maybe you can form some kind of support group. So like you, they would not feel alone.

I know there is some people on this site from Michigan, maybe they are near your area, and you can get together.

Just a suggestion.

Take care Beck,


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I don't think you understand what I was saying. I HAVE met the folks from Michigan and they do not live close to me. I've met Joe B, RY and Mr. RY, Cathy, SandyS and her Princess (from Illinois), Lisa O, Rachel (from Alaska), Katie (Texas)...and the late DavidA. We had a wonderful time at RY's place on the lake.

My point was that I haven't run into anyone in my life that was a fellow PATIENT. Someone who had been through what I have been through, someone who was a random meeting in my real life existence. This was something random and a quick sharing of experiences but a full-on face-to-face support group on a schedule is not something I need, the ever constant reminder of why I am now different.

I do not want to start a support group, I do not have the time nor the energy for it. Selfish as that sounds, it's the truth. I work full-time and then some, I have a husband, a son, a dog, four stepkids, grandkids, my parents, my brother and his family, a new home that has no landscaping and still hasn't been completely moved into (still have things in storage) and I really don't care to take any time from the LIFE that needs my time. I share of myself here, that's enough. Cancer is a part of my life, it is NOT my life.

As for my oncologist telling me of his other patients, he can't. It's a privacy issue. He can tell me that he treats others, he can tell me what he has seen, but to say "John Doe, phone number 123-456-7890" is illegal and unethical. I have passed this website on to my oncologist, he can share that if he sees fit, but other than that, it's not my business and that's the law.

...and yes, Melanie, I know that no matter what kind of cancer it is, it hurts. There is a certain fellowship of cancer survivors. I have a friend who is fighting Stage IV breast cancer and we hurt together - but to run into someone whose course is a bit more close to mine was different. It was a bit more personal, same surgery, same pains, same issues with scans and the smoking question. (I know, the breast cancer is my friend's fault because at the onset of puberty, she grew breasts. Had she not done that... :wink: )

I was commenting on the randomness of the meeting and the similarities we had, nothing more.

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I'm not the patient, but I fully understand where you're coming from on all fronts, Becky. Especially the not starting a support group thing. and the privacy thing, of other patients. I keep thinking that Dave and I should try to start something here, but I just honestly don't have the time. Like you, and for alot of the same reasons.

anyway, we were so EXCITED to meet JustAKid when she joined the board last summer - because finally we knew someone in our city with lung cancer! and someone our age! of course she has NSCLC and Dave has SCLC, but, still, they're about the same age and we know her personally! Crazy! and now we care as much, no MORE about Beth and her family than the friends we've known forever. but how can we live and work and move around in the same town with Philip Morris USA and thousands of residents, and not have known anyone else with LC? weird.

I feel the same way about the families we traveled to China with. Spend two weeks in close quarters with people doing the exact same, life changing, thrilling, adventure of a lifetime, and you're bonded for life. and there's not a soul amongst the 15 families that I wish I'd never see again. I love them all.

anyway, I really get what you're saying. it is so HUGE when you meet someone with the exact same experience.


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