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Stage III Cancer Survivors ...Five + Years and Out.

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  • liv-
    liv- Member Posts: 272
    edited January 2013
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    kimf - congratulations to you, brilliant and thanks for the positive encouragement.

    best wishes

    xx

  • katyand4
    katyand4 Member Posts: 32
    edited January 2013
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    Iamenough....love your attitude!  When I lost my hair I went with a ball cap...wasn't brave enough to go bald but wasn't going to hide in my house the whole time until my hair grew back because that would have meant the cancer was controlling my life.  I believe having a positive attitude is half the battle so keep it up.  And the girls are right you look beautiful.  

    Gogh and DC mom congrats and keep the stories coming!!!

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,519
    edited February 2013
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    7 years and counting!!!  Bugs also marked 7 years this week!!!

  • Sjesse12345
    Sjesse12345 Member Posts: 12
    edited February 2013
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    karen1956 - WOOT WOOT!!!!  Thanks for posting, us newbies LOVE it when you "veterans" stop in to keep us motivated and show us how it's done.

  • maryannecb
    maryannecb Member Posts: 74
    edited February 2013
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    The 7 year club is getting crowded..love it...there is plenty more room..we are waiting for you newbies.

  • DGeel
    DGeel Member Posts: 1
    edited February 2013
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    Hi there, my name is Debby and I am a South African. In March 2013 I would have done my five years (God is Good all the time).  I am still on Tamoxifen and have just finished my Lucrin injections that was injected into me every 3 months.  I see my OC in March and he will notify me if I can come off the Tamoxifen.  I am healthy and must say this has been a journey!

  • Sjesse12345
    Sjesse12345 Member Posts: 12
    edited February 2013
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    DGeel - 5 years, that is fantastic news!  Keep on doing what you're doing and thanks for posting and letting us know.

  • Jasplisa
    Jasplisa Member Posts: 3
    edited February 2013
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    Hello. I started this journey 7/31/12 . I am st 3 c, grade 2, 12 of 27 positive nodes I have completed 4 rounds a/c, 12 weeks of taxol, and am starting radiation 2/25. I have tolerated the chemo well and coming out of chemo brain, which is good but also bad as I am suddenly very aware of what's going on, And am panic stricken. Thank god for Xanax. I had a clean mammo on Dec of 2010. Then felt a lump in June of 2011. Made a dr appt and the Dr thought it was just a cyst. I went back a few months later and told her it was still there, THEN she ordered a mammo and of course it was a tumor! Why did I listen to her! I have Kaiser btw. I wonder if it progressed to st 3 in those six months.



    Thanks for letting me vent. Lisa







  • nancyd
    nancyd Member Posts: 557
    edited July 2016
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    Five years ago today I was officially diagnosed with IDC in my left breast and nodes. Even though I knew already, this date sticks in my mind as the start of my fight and the beginning of my new normal.



    I started neo adjuvant chemo (TAC) at the end of March 2008, had bilateral mastectomies in July, two more rounds of TAC, started Arimidex and radiation in September. By Halloween, I was done with active treatment.



    I continued to work through most of this, only taking two days off for each chemo and four weeks for the surgery. By Christmas, I had ditched my wig and sported the shortest hair I had ever had since my mother insisted on a pixie cut when I was 9. But it was enough hair that I could wash it, comb it, and somewhat style it.



    In January 2010, I had DIEP reconstruction, and finally felt like breast cancer was behind me. I do worry about recurrence but the Arimidex seems to be working, if the hot flashes and night sweats are any indication of the eradication of the remaining estrogen in my body.



    I've read a lot about how stressful events in your life effects you. 2008 was hard because of the cancer...but it was just that one event, even though treatment took most of the year. 2012 was harder because there were many different stressful events in my life. I lost my older sister, my family home, my job, a car, and my gall bladder. And those were just the major stressors. Making it to today, my five-year mark, was the goal I set my eyes on when things got very tough.



    So here I am today, celebrating that I made it to five years!

    JULY 2016 update

    Still NED. Still on anastrazole. Taking life easy as I am semi-retired (doing some occasional freelance work). I think aging problems are my major concerns now. I turned 65 this spring and I realize I am a Senior Citizen, though most days I don't feel like it.

    I still come to these boards because I am just a very curious person...curious about new treatments and curious about the people I got to know here. But since my diagnosis, I have moved very far along in my life. I hope any newbies reading this are reassured that as the initial terror subsides you will regain your life.

  • lovujja
    lovujja Member Posts: 31
    edited February 2013
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    HI Nancy,

    Congratulations for your 5th year toch down. I can feel that you are a tough person with inner desire to be healthy and happy. You will have many years of happy and healthy life ahead.

    Person like me, to see survivars posting their story gives hope and determination in life.

    God bless ya!

  • Unknown
    edited February 2013
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    Congratulatons Nancy and all the other survivors.

  • denise-g
    denise-g Member Posts: 353
    edited February 2013
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    Nancy D - celebrating with you.  Thanks for the hope and encouragement!

  • danlias
    danlias Member Posts: 1
    edited February 2013
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    Thank you ladies so much for having this forum of survivors!!!  My mom was diagnosed as stage 3, had a rough time through chemo and just last week had her mastectomy and lymph node removal.  Soon we will be starting radiation.  I made the horrible mistake of looking up information online...not good!  It is so good to hear positive stories of women who are thriving years and years later.  I'm having a hard time dealing with this and REALLY need to hear positive stories.  THANK YOU!

  • Bugs
    Bugs Member Posts: 21
    edited February 2013
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    ohh, thanks Karen for posting here!  I posted on the reg. III forum, but not in here.  Yep, I hit the 7 year mark on Feb. 1st.  Feb is a month of "dates" that I'm sure you all get and I still think of.  Feb 1st-diagnosis, Feb 9th-bilateral mastectomies, Feb 14th- pathology of stage 3, grade 3.  My son was just turned 8 years old and all I could think about was how young he was and that he would barely remember me.

    7 years later...I have a new job that I love, "this"close to finishing my bachelors degree, my TEEN is driving (EEEEK!) and life is great.  

  • caaclark
    caaclark Member Posts: 19
    edited February 2013
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    Ok, I'll add mine too:  7 years for me too-actually 7 years and one month but I just have been busy so haven't posted.

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,519
    edited February 2013
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    Nancy...congrats on 5 years!! Wishing you many more years of celebrating life!!!!

  • sherry67
    sherry67 Member Posts: 370
    edited February 2013
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    Big congrats to Bugs and Caaclark...

  • maryannecb
    maryannecb Member Posts: 74
    edited February 2013
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    Lots of stage threers doing well! I love seeing the list get longer.

  • lexi4
    lexi4 Member Posts: 59
    edited February 2013
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    Yay Nancy, Bugs and Carol!! (and any other stage III sisters I may have missed), I love to see these encouraging posts! Gosh, they meant so much to me when I was starting this cruddy journey. Wishing and praying for all of us to celebrate many more years together.

  • hmh23
    hmh23 Member Posts: 49
    edited February 2013
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    Congratulations Karen!!!!  Your great news keeps my spirits high.  Heather

  • Tammylynn
    Tammylynn Member Posts: 22
    edited March 2013
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    I have spent the morning reading your stories. You have all inspired me. I was diagnosed with breast cancer 3 weeks ago. Last week I has a double mastectomy. Monday I go to have a port put in and Tuesday I have my first appointment with my oncologist. I am stage 3a estrogen/ progesterone positive, her-2 negative. My tumor was 7 cm and 9 of 12 lymph nodes were involved. Everything has happened so fast! I am 39 my little one has type 1 diabetes . The first thing I thought when I heard the news was who will take care of him. I am so worried about further tests and what they may show. I am praying it has not spread. It's so much to grasp in such a short time! I thought it was a death sentence.

  • Momine
    Momine Member Posts: 2,845
    edited March 2013
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    Tammy, welcome! No, it is NOT a death sentence. It is a total bitch and very unpleasant, but you have every good chance of sticking around for a long time. Do you have a treatment plan yet?

  • Tammylynn
    Tammylynn Member Posts: 22
    edited March 2013
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    I haven't met with my oncologist yet. I go to her this Tuesday. My surgeon said I would do chemo and radiation. I have my port put in Monday, so I am thinking chemo will be starting soon. I don't know if they do radiation at the same time or what. I am just so nervous right now, waiting for my appointment Tuesday. I am so new to this. Within 3 weeks time I've been told I have cancer, I had both breasts removed and now I'm just left waiting till Tuesday to see the oncologist. Then I should know what my treatment plan will be. Tuesday can't get here fast enough!

  • Momine
    Momine Member Posts: 2,845
    edited March 2013
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    Tammy, yes, the beginning is the absolute worst. It WILL get better. You do not do chemo and rads at the same thing. Usually you do chemo, then rads. Have you had any scans yet?

    My timeline was quite different because I had chemo before surgery, then more chemo after surgery.

    May I ask where you are being treated? I don't mean the specific hospital. more which part of the country, city or country, cancer center or general hospital, that kind of thing.

    Also, insist on being referred to a PT who specializes in MX patients. It is so, so helpful.

  • Tammylynn
    Tammylynn Member Posts: 22
    edited March 2013
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    I have not had any scans yet. That is another thing that really has me worried because I have had pain behind my shoulder blade on the same side that the tumor was on in my breast. I'm so worried that something may be there. I am in Grand Junction, Colorado. Right now I'm scheduled to see a local oncologist.

  • Momine
    Momine Member Posts: 2,845
    edited March 2013
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    Try not to stress about strange pains. Easier said than done, I know. The scans scared me silly, but getting them back clean also gave me some hope and peace of mind to attack the treatment with.

    Find out from the onc what he plans to do in terms of scans and in terms of chemo. You may want to get a second opinion as well. 

    For me they did CTs of head, chest and belly, a bone scan, then a follow-up MRI of the liver and a heart ultrasound to make sure I was OK to get epirubicin/adriamycin (common chemo drug).

  • Tammylynn
    Tammylynn Member Posts: 22
    edited March 2013
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    I know every little pain scares me right now. I

    Thank you for the info on testing. All of this is new to me so I can use all the help I can get!

  • Momine
    Momine Member Posts: 2,845
    edited March 2013
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    Tammy, they really should check you over quite carefully before moving on with treatment. It is not pleasant, but it is a good idea all the same. I also think a second opinion is a good idea. Treatment is pretty standard, but getting a second doc to sign off on my treatment plan helped me feel confident and hopeful that I was on the right track.

    As for the pains, I had a weird and quite sharp pain on and around my collarbone from biopsy on through all the treatment. I still get it every so often. I have had scans galore, and nothing shows. So at this point I figure that if it doesn't light up any scans, it is really unlikely to be cancer, in which case it is stupid of me to lose sleep over it.

    Speaking of lost sleep, do not be afraid to tell your docs if you are freaking out. Prior to cancer I had never taken anything stronger than an aspirin. But a cancer DX made me take a xanax a few times, and it was good that I did.

  • Nancy10102006
    Nancy10102006 Member Posts: 2
    edited March 2013
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    Hi all - After 7 1/2 years I still come to this site every now and then and especially love to see the posts from those who are many years out.  I rarely post; however I will now so I can say I also have multiple years since being diagnosed.  I am doing great, feeling great, and looking forward to good times ahead.  But I still remember how scared I was - even thought that buying a new pair of jeans was wreckless behavior 'cause I didn't think I would be able to wear them long.  But I've bought many, many pairs of jeans since and plan to continue Laughing 

    I waited 6 1/2 years to have reconstruction (tram flap) and now am glad I finally did it.  I am still on Zometa every 6 months (for 5 years total) and arimidex (for 10 years).

    Congratulations to all of you who are doing so well.  And best wishes and hugs to all who are new to this - life gets better with time.

  • wintersocks
    wintersocks Member Posts: 434
    edited March 2013
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    Nancy,

    This is so great to hear. Thank-you for taking the time to post.