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2013 Sister Warriors

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  • Cuetang
    Cuetang Member Posts: 173
    edited January 2014
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    Happy holidays to my IDC warrior sisters!  Last year, after Christmas, little did I know that the lump my obgyn found during a routine exam would change my life forever and turn it upside down.  Throughout this year, you were all here for me as I navigated my way through the various BC terminology, listened to my various frustrations with hiccups in the medical system, and provided a shoulder to lean on and sound advice as I learned how to deal and live the "new normal".  Life will never be the same now, as there will always be the BC cancer radio playing in the room, and aches/pains/colds will never be the same (aka canceritis), but these thoughts don't consume me every minute and hour anymore.  I also know there's always support here when I need it.  Yes, treatment sucks butt and I feel like I have the joints of an 80 year old in my 30s (thanks tamoxifen), but I've learned to appreciate many of the little things in life and all the new friends I've made here.  Thank you for everything.

    2013 was truly a sucky year courtesy of BC.  For 2014, I wish you all a happy and healthier new year!  HUGS!

  • Monis
    Monis Member Posts: 309
    edited January 2014
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    I'm adding myself to the club just hours before 2013 ends!  DX'd with IDC in Oct., had UMX w/TE on 11/08.  I am now "expanding".  Happy New Year to all you gals!

  • FairyDogMother
    FairyDogMother Member Posts: 154
    edited January 2014
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    Just wanted to say Happy New Year!  Fight on Sisters!  Chemo # 3 is January 2nd we are doing the Wizard of Oz theme. I wanted to go as a new years baby, but people might not want to see me naked :)  

  • jeni72
    jeni72 Member Posts: 15
    edited January 2014
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    happy new years! To health , wealth and happiness in 2014 ! All my love ,prayers to you all....jeni

  • ndgirl
    ndgirl Member Posts: 950
    edited January 2014
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    Happy New Year to all the 2013 sisters! wishing all a healthy new year! what a year this has been for us! But we made it through and keep fighting on to enjoy many more months... I say I only have 41/2 years left on arimidexSad but also am glad we have this medicine to fight bc! will take it as long as i can.

    All the best to everyone.

  • nyama
    nyama Member Posts: 38
    edited January 2014
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    Hi everyone -

    I haven't posted in forever, it seems (which is actually a good thing, since it means all is going well and my life is no longer revolving around cancer) but just wanted to drop in to wish everyone best wishes for a healthier and happier new year!  I have to say, I'll be very happy to say good-bye to 2013.  What a year!  Life-changing, for sure.

     I still read the board and keep you all in my thoughts, even though I don't post very much.  I was so grateful for the support when I needed it through the spring and summer.  Life is now almost back to normal--started teaching again this last semester (and am actually finishing up next semester's western civ syllabus tonight--an exciting way to spend the holiday, I know, lol!) I continue to dragonboat with the women's BC team in my area and that also provides lots of support and friendship (and quite a workout, too).  Thankfully, I'm doing well on the Arimidex so that's not an issue.  Aside from some post-rads muscle tightness, which I'm trying to stretch out and work through, I no longer have pain from the surgery.   So, like I said, life is almost back to normal.  I guess, among the hardships, there's lots to be grateful for this year.  

    Anyway--thinking of all of you and wishing you all the best in the new year.  We made it through 2013!!!

  • Warrior_Woman
    Warrior_Woman Member Posts: 819
    edited January 2014
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    A friend mentioned yesterday that when a person has cancer, it is difficult to have "carefree moments".  Those times when you're just living your life as you did before the big C.  I expect that as I move further away from the trauma and become less fearful, those carefree moments will gradually return.  Good for you, Nyama.  Happy New Year to all the Sister Warriors!

  • rmlulu
    rmlulu Member Posts: 1,501
    edited January 2014
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    Hi y'all

    Happy New Years!   

    Thankful for all the support during 2013 ...we made it warriors!  Last year, the beginning of the new year held so much uncertainty...today embracing the new with confidence stronger and determined.

    (((Hugs)))

    Cindy

  • LiLi-RI
    LiLi-RI Member Posts: 160
    edited January 2014
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    Happy New Year to all the brave warriors! 2013 was a tough year, and I am happy it is gone! Though I do not post a lot-I have read all of your struggles and shared your good moments. I truly could not have made it through this year without each of you! I still suffer with truncal lymphedema and the pains associated with Arimidex each day.....I am also anxious for April for my 1 year check. I wish each of us a better 2014! 

  • sciencegal
    sciencegal Member Posts: 546
    edited January 2014
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    Happy New Year sisters! Here's to a happy and healthy 2014.

    Cheers!

  • BigDBeatingBigC
    BigDBeatingBigC Member Posts: 228
    edited January 2014
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    I am new here today.  Received diagnosis of IDC on 12/17.  Am scheduled for a lumpectomy and sentinal node procedure on 1/14.  I live alone and have no family nearby.  I will pretty much be taking care of myself and also need to get back to work ASAP as it is my only source of income.  I am so glad I found this website.  It is comforting to see so many survivors.  I was told my lump is about .9 cm.  Was told I will have radiation for sure.  They will make a decision about chemo after the pathology results are in.  I try to keep my spirits up in front of my co-workers and friends but I cry alot when I am home alone and am very scared.  I guess that is normal.  It sure is true that the waiting is the hardest part.  My doctor told me to stop reading the internet and scaring myself to death, but I am pretty good at weeding out the good info from the unreliable.  God bless all of you. 

  • Warrior_Woman
    Warrior_Woman Member Posts: 819
    edited January 2014
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    Joan - I'm sorry you're here but you will find it to be a real lifeline.  There are threads for single women.  Also, the social workers did a great job of getting me all types of in home services.  They can even arrange transportation.  There is also information on here about employment issues, legal issues and finances.  There is a lot you can get for free too.  The American Cancer Society is a great resource for that.  I love this website.  I don't feel so alone.  The women here are saving my sanity.  

  • rmlulu
    rmlulu Member Posts: 1,501
    edited January 2014
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    JoanT - welcome to our band of warriors, but sorry you must join us.  I received my DX on 12/17/13 the waiting is the worst, but you've got your team and you have a plan.  Use your wait to prepare.  Find an appointment buddy to go with you and be your ears and backup, make a folder/file keep all your papers, tests, receipts, stay on BC.org site don't Mr Google...ohmyivegotcancerimgoingtodie.  Breathe, focus on today.  Don't get ahead of yourself and rehearse something you nay not have to do.  Do life...soak in the people and things that Najee your heart and spirit smile:)

    Join us in the lumpectomy lounge.  Write down all your questions make 2 copies and ask ask ask.  You will be surprised how great you feel after lx&snd...pains meds first 24 hrs then only at bedtime for a few days.  The cloud that is swirling and crushing your head will lift and you will feel sooo much better.  Just watch the arm.  Ask your BS when you may return to work.  Important ask your BS how and when you will receive results of margins&nodes...if a phone call have a family member or friend there when you receive...easier I think that was the first time I shed tears in relief.

    We will be in your pocket {{{squeeze}}} you've got this  brave warrior!

    (((Hugs)))

    Cindy

  • ndgirl
    ndgirl Member Posts: 950
    edited January 2014
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    JoanT, welcome to the club nobody wanted to join, but you will be so glad to be on this site. I dont post so often on this thread, but check it daily. Helped me get thru this last 8 months since my surgery, dont know what I would have done without it.

    RMlulu gave the best advice... since I had mx, I cant help with the lumpectomy part of it. Just know we are all here for you and what you decided to do. I found my surgery was so much easier that I ever expected! You will get thru this just fine and be back to work quicker that you think. My young neice was only 40 when dx, had a lump and rads and she said she never missed any work from doing the rads for six weeks. She is doing great, been almost four years for her now. Stay strong, we are all in your pocket.

    Linda

  • BigDBeatingBigC
    BigDBeatingBigC Member Posts: 228
    edited January 2014
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    Thanks, Cindy.  You have made me feel better already.  I am in Dallas btw so we are fellow Texans!  I will look for the lumpectomy lounge and join you there.  Thanks again!

  • BigDBeatingBigC
    BigDBeatingBigC Member Posts: 228
    edited January 2014
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    Thank you, Linda, that is funny, the club nobody wanted to join.  How right you are!  But very glad I have found you all.  I don't feel so alone now.  Having people who have gone through this makes it easier to express feelings.  I am older (turned 61 yesterday) and quite a fighter during this lifetime so I am up for whatever is thrown my way.  I just want to know what is facing me and I won't know that for a little while longer.  I appreciate your reaching out to me.

  • Cuetang
    Cuetang Member Posts: 173
    edited January 2014
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    joant-- sorry you're here with us, but you'll find that there are a great group of folks here that can offer an ear when you need to vent or ask questions.  RMlulu has pretty much covered the bases with the advice...if possible do bring that person that can be that extra set of ears...because you'll only hear so much with all the info that will be thrown at you.  Also look into your health care to see if a home nurse that can come once a day is covered for the time immediately after surgery as well.  It's normal to be scared but do make sure you try to enjoy and do the hobbies you did before learning about BC.  It's not going to be an easy road ahead of you, but we are here.  hUGS!

  • LoriS22
    LoriS22 Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2014
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    Dec 13 (Friday the 13th) I was diagnosed with IDC. If my Her2 comes back neg then I am triple negative. Tumor is 2 cent. Doctors think I may be at stage 2. Not sure what all this means other then I about to have a port put in this Friday as well as a biopsy on one lymph node that shined on my PET scan the other day. I turned 50 on Dec 28 and I have two teenage girls and a husband who still need me around so I too  about to kick some cancer A$$! Still scared though.. 

  • rmlulu
    rmlulu Member Posts: 1,501
    edited January 2014
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    Lori - welcome, but so sorry you join our club :( ugh this disease.  Congrats on 50 BDay milestone celebrate...family, friends, love...much to celebrate.  Stay focus on today 

    Check out the stage II thread and if you are 3Neg thread.  These threads are such a lifeline.

    Breathe, we will be in your pocket {{{squeeze}}}. Being scared...understand...but know that we are here...vent, cry, release...than focus on today. Blow some bubbles, wiggle you're toes in the grass, soak up all the hugs of family and friends :) 

    ((Hugs)))

    Cindy

  • TeamKim
    TeamKim Member Posts: 301
    edited January 2014
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    JoanT & Lori -- Welcome, though we are all sorry we end to be here, we are tremendous support for one another.  Lori, your path will become more clear as you get more information.  Are you getting a port because they plan to do chemo prior to surgery to shrink your tumor?

    Joan, I had two areas of cancer in the same quadrant of one breast -- one DCIS and one IDC -- and they took out a wedge of flesh and rearranged the remaining breast tissue, and I also had SND at the same time.  So my surgery was pretty involved, more so than your lumpectomy will probably be.  I HAD to go back to work 4 weeks after surgery (I am a professor) and I shared that with my doctors.  I also HAD to be able to travel 3 weeks after surgery.  Both happened.  I found that the surgery pain was as RMlulu said -- only took pain meds for about 12 hours, then switched to Tylenol for a couple more days.  Slept in a recliner for a couple of weeks and kept my arm elevated when sitting or lying down.  You might feel a little more secure if you have someone with you for a couple of days, but it isn't critical -- you will need a driver from surgery, and they probably won't let you drive for a week or so after.  Join Lumpectomy Lounge thread for more support through surgery.  My nodes and margins were clear, but chemo was ordered for me due to the pathology of my cancer cells -- I just finished that, and while it was no picnic, I managed to work throughout.  I am about to turn 59, so we are similar in age as well (though I don't live alone).   So it is, as they say, "doable" and you need to take one step at a time.  You are in the most confusing part -- you are hit constantly with new information and you are afraid of the treatments and the outcomes -- emotion is understandable and normal.  Try to turn that energy to constructive pursuits and take breaks to enjoy life.   Make lists of questions and, as others have advised, try to find a friend who will go with you to appointments to just listen and help you wrap your head around the answers.  You have found your way to BCO, which is a great place to get support and friendship from fellow warriors -- I would not have survived the last 6 months without these angels!!

  • keepthefaith
    keepthefaith Member Posts: 856
    edited January 2014
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    joant, Lori, welcome!

    joan, I had lumpectomy also. Waiting for surgery was the worst part for me. Once I had it done, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted. I am 58 and also live alone. I do have my sweet boxer to keep me company and my family lives close by if I need them. I have been journalling, taking walks and trying to enjoy my good days as much as possible. This forum has been a tremendous help for me, especially when I am having down days. Please come here often and keep us posted on your progress. Once you get your final pathology report, you will have some answers. I also had an oncotype test after final path report to determine whether chemo might benefit me. Turns out I was in the intermediate range, so chemo was an option that I chose, with the help of my MO.

    good luck ladies! You can do this!

  • sciencegal
    sciencegal Member Posts: 546
    edited January 2014
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    Hi Joan and Lori- I am sorry you hae joined our "club" but glad you found us. The girls on here are AWESOME!!!!

    I was just reflecting in the shower this Am that, this time last year I was going through chemo and thought it was really the end of my world, that everything I knew had stopped or been altered.

    BUT, one year later, everything is back to normal, I just have a few battle scars. and a deeper appreciation of life and of those who I love, I never hesitate to let them know. It was just a "bad year" among my many others. And may the big C never rear its ugly head again.

    Thank GOSH for herceptin!!! And all the new derivatives in the pipeline for us.

    You can do this!!!! One step at a time. Deeeeeep breaths, and please take care of yourselves first, through this journey. It is the year of "you".


    Hugs

  • LiLi-RI
    LiLi-RI Member Posts: 160
    edited January 2014
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    Hi Joan T. and Lori. Welcome to the group! At first-everything was so overwhelming...I am 51 yr and live alone. I have always been independent, and I hated to ask anyone for help. This changed after my diagnosis. All the advice of the Sister Warriors helped to guide me through the processes. Truly the worst part of the disease is the waiting for results. We are here for you both. Breathe. One day, one moment at a time!

  • DeeW29
    DeeW29 Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2014
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    JoanT,

    I was dx with triple negative BC in July 2013 at the age of 31. I just completed chemo the week before Christmas. I will have a lymph node biopsy this week and bilateral mastectomy the following week. I wanted to reach out to you because I live in Dallas as well. We will get through this.

  • ndgirl
    ndgirl Member Posts: 950
    edited January 2014
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    Good luck Dee, wow you have already been thru alot! hopefully the surgery will be the easier part. Will be thinking of you having the node biopsy... clear is the word! ((hugs))

  • BigDBeatingBigC
    BigDBeatingBigC Member Posts: 228
    edited January 2014
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    Hi Dee!  Thank you, its' good to know a fellow Dallas area resident in here.  Good luck to you as well, you have been through so much already God bless  I will keep you in my prayers for your upcoming surgery as well.  We will be having surgery the same week.  I am going to be at Med City, you?

  • ndgirl
    ndgirl Member Posts: 950
    edited January 2014
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    Thinking of you as well Joan T with your upcoming surgery!! hope things go smoothly!! ((hugs to you))

  • DeeW29
    DeeW29 Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2014
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    Thanks NDgirl! I have really been blessed through this. God has been perfect in my life. The first piece of advice I received was to hold on to your faith. JoanT, I will be at Presbyterian Dallas.

  • ReneeinOH
    ReneeinOH Member Posts: 232
    edited January 2014
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    I think Monis didn't get a welcome--we  are sincerely glad you--and others--found us, but sad that you are joining us. 

    One year ago today I was told I had breast cancer. Shocked, overwhelmed, and scared are understatements of how I was feeling. But, I got through surgery, and my treatment to lower my chances for a recurrence has become part of my life.  Cancer no longer defines me, but I have made adjustments, and have learned how to put my needs first.

    So, my sisters who are at the early parts of your fights, please do put your needs first, welcome help if it is offered, and focus on fighting this battle.  The mission is to get the cancer out of your body.  Do what you need to do to make that happen, and you then you can get back to your life.  It will be a new normal, but you can deal with it.  You got this.

    And, to my sister warriors who have been to battle and are now on the other side: ((((hugs to you))))  Thank you so much for being there for me, and so glad we were able to go through this together.  Here's to a better new year for us all.

  • Warrior_Woman
    Warrior_Woman Member Posts: 819
    edited January 2014
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    Renee!  CONGRATULATIONS!  A few days after my diagnosis a woman shared her own BC experience.  She told me I will come out the other side as a better person and I will like myself more.  Powerful words precisely when I needed to hear them. Thank you for starting this discussion and giving me renewed hope that the wise words I heard a few months ago are true.