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Newly diagnosed

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leslie14
leslie14 Member Posts: 1
edited October 2023 in Just Diagnosed

Hi,

Received the msg. from dr. that the breast lump I discovered and they biopsied is Cancer. I don't know what stage etc, so I have to wait two weeks. Im trying to prepare myself but am so distraught at which way to move constructively forward at this point. Any suggestions?

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  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,903
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    Hi Leslie14,

    We're sorry you find yourself here, but glad you found us. Getting a breast cancer diagnosis is very overwhelming, especially in the beginning. Once you understand more about the diagnosis, and the treatment plan, it should hopefully get a bit less overwhelming. Here is a section to read to better understand the pathology report they will discuss with you https://www.breastcancer.org/pathology-report .

    Try to take one day at a time. It will get easier, and you are not alone!
    We're all here for you.

    🤗 Your Mods

  • maggiehopley
    maggiehopley Member Posts: 103
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    Do you have access to a nurse navigator? I was assigned one as soon as I had my biopsy and it made all the difference in the world. She made all my appointments for me; all I had to do was show up. The time between biopsy and knowing your treatment plan is absolutely the worst. My anxiety level was through the roof. Based on your biopsy results you might need additional testing so be prepared for that. I ended up having 2 MRIs, a CT scan, and a bone scan before my treatment plan was in place. Once you know your plan, you will be able to move forward. Until then, be kind to yourself and don't worry about trying to do anything constructive right now. Just know that your doctors and nurses really will take very good care of you.

  • needs.a.nap
    needs.a.nap Member Posts: 162
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    Hello @leslie14. I’m sorry. It’s not easy getting that news. I understand your wanting to prepare … when I found out mine was cancer, I went into immediate “survival” mode and needed to get ready for the big unknown (it was weird but I did a lot of laundry in those early days, I’m not sure why but I just needed to do something!)

    A friend of mine who was 3 months ahead of me in her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment recommended a book called Breast Cancer Treatment Handbook by Judy Kneece … her surgeon gave her a copy but mine didn’t so I ordered the 10th edition from Amazon. It was very helpful having everything explained and ideas for questions to ask each doctor, plus really good illustrations. Getting information piecemeal on the internet wasn’t helping me see the whole picture clearly, so I appreciated having a book like this to guide me. I’m sure there are other great books out there.

    Do you know anything more than that it’s cancer? Did your doctor say which type? I remember getting some preliminary information but had to wait a few days for the biopsy pathology results to be completed. Then I was able to view them on my patient portal. I also was able to speak with my nurse navigator who explained my biopsy pathology results. It helped me know what specific type of breast cancer to research and get familiar with instead of going crazy researching everything. Everyone recommends being careful with what you research, for good reason, but if you like research, starting to get acquainted with the whole world of breast cancer can be helpful (this forum is an excellent resource!) especially since we are now part of this ‘world’.

    Looking back to my first days of being diagnosed, (besides frantically doing laundry), I spent a lot of time having conversations with family and friends … everyone was supportive and kind. Now I wished I had carved out time for a daily walk, and ate breakfast every day, drank more water, gone to bed at a decent hour, etc … I know that might sound silly but it was easy to be preoccupied and mentally spinning around trying to process my diagnosis, that I wasn’t taking the best care of my body. Thankfully my surgery went well and I healed well, but no thanks to me taking great care of myself. Whatever you may need to treat your cancer, whether that’s surgery or other treatment, you will not regret making some efforts right away to prepare yourself to be the healthiest person you possibly can be. Others tried telling me I needed to rest and to take care of myself before surgery but I didn’t really understand. I guess I had a lot of nervous energy to work out! I am glad I got all my laundry done before surgery but that wasn’t nearly as good as enjoying quality time with my family and friends. I’m sorry I’m rambling on and on … I hardly qualify to give advice on this … you may need time to simply process the shocking news. We all do it differently.

    I’m so glad you found this forum and joined. I hope you find comfort and support from being here. Please feel free to share anything and everything you want and we can all try our best to help you!

  • bluesky1969
    bluesky1969 Member Posts: 80
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    I echo the above. It's super overwhelming. I spent a lot of time researching on reputable websites - regional and international. I guess everyone has their way of coping and mine is knowing as much as I can. If this doesn't fit for you, please ignore.

    I tried to focus on breathing (was hard), and walking(really helped) - and distracting podcasts(can't remember a single one, but they soothed in the moment)

    In the early days of my diagnosis I found myself blaming myself over and over - for my sugar habit, smoking and binge drinking in my 20's, being too negative etc etc. I hope you don't do the same: it was terrifying to me that despite being very active, not smoking, not drinking, taking decent care of myself - this was totally out of my control. The chaos that churned up was hard to tolerate. It's a big adjustment - please be kind to yourself and feel free to message me anytime.

    Hoping for speedy and clear information for you soon

  • gladis
    gladis Member Posts: 43
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    So sorry you have to go through this Leslie

    I hope you find comfort here, in the company of many strong women who have all been down

    this well trodden path.

    I've found good comfort in realizing BC in BC isn't personal.

    I've not much to add to everyone's wonderful advice than this:

    This life of scans, waits and medical changes your brain.

    At times it's scrambled eggs -it will get clearer.

    When you can accept advice …when you're head allows you to—

    like don't blame yourself for the deeds of your youth-

    and to recall in the moment that family/friends/people will offer all sorts of 'advice'

    that won't help with the current— mind pot hole.

    You may come out in love with life all over again.

    It may be a ways but it is a certain possibility.

    Here's to more info , pronto!

  • katg
    katg Member Posts: 206
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    I hope you come back and post Leslie.

    I love what all the others have said. I did try to just do my work a day at a time and do my daily living from the moment i found my lump to the 1st dr visits, then the mammograms, CT scan, US and breast biopsy. I did not tell people far and wide, just my family, a meeting i attended on Friday zoom and a couple nurse friends. I did forget that both of those two might not keep a confidence and may have told their husbands. Noone spread it, so I did not have the "How are you doing" stressors. I also found mine in late June of 2021. Covid still around and I still worked from home. I got a medical release and stayed working from home 1 more year.

    By now, you are a month and a half into the journey. Benign? My good friend had said she has had many lumps in her larger breasts. My smaller one had cancer. Two years ago!!!!!

    I so agree with Gladis, Bluesky69, thisismaya, needs.a.nap, maggie. This type of forum has real people who walked the path. I was told about bc.org after i started chemo as a friend told me about it.

    One day at a time, one test at a time.