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trying hard to survive

Guest Cindi O'H

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Guest Cindi O'H

I need feedback/help. I am confused.

I was dx with squamous cell carcinoma Nov '02. Treatment included all the radiation burns and chemo I could handle. I had the usual side effects of treatment...and maybe more, I don't know. Since Nov. of '03, I have had a heart attack and a stent and all the medications now that go with it. Since Nov. 03, I have had laryngitis for 6 weeks, shingles, bad tennis elbow, pleural effusions drained, nocturnal seizures, conjunctivitis, bladder infection for the first time in my life, inflammatory arthritis of some kind, boils, fatigue, sore joints, muscles, fibers, tendons etc etc....The rheumatologist said either you have lupus or something or your cancer has mets. I had a good onc. check up last week so it isn't that.

My siblings (my only family) tell me to get over it and get on with it. I don't feel strong enough to work. I have been self-supprting all my life as a dental hygienist. They think this illness is all in my head. "Are you going to carry all this sickness with you or are you going to get to work?"

I am 48 years old. I think that I have gone through this remarkably well. My attitude has been a huge help. Now I need help selling my house. I am out of money and as soon as I ask for help, my siblings tell me I am not sick and I feel they turn their backs on me. We have lost two of our brothers to lung cancer. Dick was 37 yo and Johnny was 43. i know this is a very serious illness. Are other people as sick as I am for this long or is it all in my head as my family believes. i don't know what to think. That is why I am asking you. My stage is 111-b. And I am still Alive to grieve!!

And most of the time I am grateful for every little thing, but this one got me down...

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You have been through so much and perhaps it is stress of some kind making your siblings say the things you report them saying. Have you applies for disability through your last employer or through Social Security. You may quailify for SS Disabilty payments. Cancer effects so many things, family relationships is one.

My heart goes out to you, in your time of need. You are strong. Look at all you have been through and are still on your feet. You and I are the same age, and I wish you strength and all things good.

Your illnesses are NOT in your head. Oftentimes women are given that message, which keeps us from getting DXed early.

Pls come back often for support. People here care and can help you with their knowledge.


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You are dealing with very difficult circumstances that I can't even imagine. You have a very serious medical condition and, in fact, more than one. If your only family cannot support you in your struggle, turn elsewhere. There are agencies and support groups who would gladly help you. Some times people can be as toxic as chemo (for whatever reason) and you just have to stay away from that.

Please stay on this board where you will receive support, concern and information...things you need to survive. Remember no matter how you feel, you are not alone in this struggle.

Blessings to you,


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I wish you well. I am about your age, had similar serious radiation/chemo/surgery without the heart complications (had other complications earlier). It took me 7 months post surgery to get back to work, 11 months post diagnosis. I had pt for a year, also had other surgeries, then skin cancer on the tip of my nose. Hang in there, don't lose heart... your attitude to date has been terrific! :):)

Please look into social security. Ask Norme (Norme, where are you?) about Social security disability benefits, she knows a lot. Sounds like that might be the best for the near future, even if it does take 6 months wait before it starts. I know my rounds with chemo, radiation, and surgery knocked the stuffing out of me. NOT FUN!!

Your siblings might be in denial having already lost 2 siblings to this nasty disease.... as if not believing it doesn't make it so. I'm sorry, it sounds painful.

Welcome, I'm glad you found us... Happy St. Patrick's Day!! :D



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Welcome Cindi,

I am sooooo glad you were able to connect on the board. I just KNOW you will find much support and comfort here. You will make NEW FREINDS and each and everyone of them and myself will understand what it is your having to deal with.

I wish to share with the board members that I know you from our Lung Cancer Support Group, and I wish to share with the members that you have and ARE putting one foot in front of the other. :wink: Like I always say, "BABY STEP" in the rollercoaster ride of being a LUNG CANCER SURVIVOR! You have beat the ODDS and by golly, I think you can continue to do that. I also know you have a LOT to offer to others and that you have a warm & caring heart.

Please stay with the board and get to know these wonderful people. And I hope to see you at Group tonight. :)

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Hi Cindi,

I just wanted you to know that I'm praying for you - that you will feel better soon and also to welcome you to the Board. I'm new here also and have found warmth and comfort already.

I am so sorry about your siblings attitude - it's very difficult for me to understand how they can treat you that way after all you've gone and are going through. I am so fortunate that I have the full support of my siblings - I truly count my blessings, especially when I hear of a situation such as yours.

Take care - wishing you all the best.



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Your family is in DENIAL. My sister died of cancer (breast) and her kids acted like all she had was a cold! They refused to see how sick she was. I had to take her to my house so she could get support and comfort for her illness. I'm sure deep down they know how serious this is for you, but they don't want to accept it and so they act like you are not that sick. Easy for them! Some people can just be plain ignorant about cancer and what it does to people. You should get into a support group with other cancer patients. Coming here will sure help!!! We are all here for each other! :wink: Good luck and come on back when you need too!


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Oh my gosh

You all are so wonderful. I am glad that I found you!!

It is a miserable place... to be misunderstood...but, here i can find understanding and compassion...the same I have for you.

Many blessings

And I hope to get to know you all better...

love, Cindi O'H

my blood is green; Happy St. Pat's :mrgreen:

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