So tuesday was my last day of radiotherapy – yay.. Thanks to the boys and Jess for coming to dinner with me to celebrate over a large Japanese meal and delicious frozen yoghurt to follow.
Majority of you would see finishing radio treatment as a fantastic thing.. and don’t get me wrong, it is. Although its also put me into a state of depression. I think it would be something hard for anyone to understand unless they have really seen what I have been through, family and close friends possibly. Being diagnosed with cancer obviously has a huge impact on your life. There are so many things you have to change and stop to look after yourself and try fight the battle to live. I did this, I successfully got through chemotherapy and radiotherapy which has been life changing. My world was turned upside down. Well, now its reversed itself and is being turned back around again and its not easy to go back to the life I once had. There are emotional strings attached to a lot to things I do no matter how positive I am. Is this it? AM I cured? Does life just continue on now like nothing happened? My brain is so confused and it hurts to think.. Emotionally and physically.
Today I saw my oncologist for review. Soon I will be contacted by the Menopause Clinic as I am still awaiting my menstrual cycle to return. Its frustrating knowing that this could be it for my fertility. I need to stay positive and I have help for that by keeping in mind that I have always been the kind of girl who was late to develop, my periods have sometimes not come for 5-6 months due to either stress or coming off a contraceptive pill. I am pinning the fact that it hasn’t come back yet, down to my silly, slow body.
I asked her today… ‘So… am I now in ‘remission?’ She replied with ‘No. Remission is a bad word to use. It actually means that you still have cancer, but you are on a ‘break’ from it affecting you at that time. I prefer to say that you are cured.’ Hearing those words ‘You are cured’ was more than music to my ears. I was in shock and didn’t know how to feel. I asked, ‘so I am completely cured!?’ she said ‘well, yes. we have done the top standard treatments to eliminate the tumor and traces so we assume that it is now gone. You will have your 6 month – yearly checkups for 5 years, then if nothing comes up we just keep testing yearly.’ More great news, but still.. this feeling of depression has not budged today.
Next was chemo, my ninth IV Herceptin dose. I talked to one of the friendly nurses about how I was feeling. She made me feel a lot better and that everything I felt was COMPLETELY normal and everyone says the same thing when they get towards the end of intensive treatment. I asked her what other people do when it comes to this? She simply said that it is no rush to get back to normality and you have to take it slow getting back into your old yet new life again. I guess it gave me reassurance that this new life WILL come back to me, just not right now. Its normal to hit a stage of depression and I am not particularly enjoying how I feel at the moment.
My red chest has become more red again and also started to tan, peel and itch/sting even more. It is horrible. I have exercised SO much this week to try focus my mind on bigger and better things but then also finished up each time with my chest doubled in colour and itchiness. I can’t win!
As you can tell, my positive strength is at a bit of a weak point this week. I have said many times in frustration ‘IM OVER IT! I’VE HAD ENOUGH! I WANT TO BE NORMAL’. I have cried over my hair a few times but then I have also got excited by trying to be mathematical by researching how much hair grows daily then multiplying it by so and so to try work out how long my hair will be in a year etc.
To end positively, I have some fantastic friends that have been organising fundraising events for me. I shall go into more detail about this via my next post.