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Topic: End of the year school events

Forum: Coping with Holidays, Special Days and Anniversaries — Holidays and special days, like birthdays and anniversaries, can be filled with complex emotions. Are they a time to celebrate or are they extra difficult? Share your feelings and experiences here.

Posted on: Apr 30, 2019 10:03PM - edited Apr 30, 2019 10:16PM by HappyAnyway

HappyAnyway wrote:

Our family has several school events in May. As long as I'm able, which I believe I will be, I will attend.

As you can see, I proactively shaved my head. I don't cover it unless I'm cold. I'm fine out and about, the gym, grocery, wherever, sporting my barely there hair. My first chemo treatment was last Friday. My next treatment is May 10. I may be shiny bald before said events. I don't plan on getting a wig.

I generally take a very honest, direct approach in situations. I'm friendly, please don't get me wrong. I'm not really concerned how my 15 year old daughter's friends will react. Some of them have shaved heads just because. They actually like my hair. My concern lies with my 8 year old's friends. My little one is very sensitive. I'm afraid that one of her school mates may make a comment that upsets her. Any ideas on how to proceed? All opinions and perspectives are welcome.

Thank you.


❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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Apr 30, 2019 10:30PM AliceBastable wrote:

Maybe just be honest without going into detail. "I'm getting medical treatment that makes my hair come out. It will grow back later." Then smile and change the subject.

Endometrial cancer 2010, basal cell multiples, breast cancer 2018, kidney cancer 2018. Cancer's a bitch, but I'm a bigger one with more practice. Dx 5/2018, ILC/IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 1/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 7/11/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 8/8/2018 Radiation Therapy 10/29/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes
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Apr 30, 2019 10:34PM MountainMia wrote:

The key might be how your girl perceives it. How do you think she's doing with it?

The rain comes and the rain goes, but the mountain remains. I am the mountain. 2/2019 diagnosis; 4/2019 left lumpectomy, 1.5cm IDC, 0/3 nodes, ER-/PR-/HER2-; 5/2019 chemo ACx4; 8/2019 radiation
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Apr 30, 2019 11:02PM exbrnxgrl wrote:

I’m a first grade teacher and have had several students whose parents had serious illnesses. I find that when parents are, age appropriately, honest with their children, the children are less anxious and able to talk about it with classmates. It’s really important that it not be treated as a secret or something shameful. If memory serves me, the American Cancer Society has some good resources for helping children deal with a loved ones cancer. All the best to you!


Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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May 1, 2019 09:07AM Flynn wrote:

My sons were 6 when I was diagnosed. We told them the medicine that I was taking would make my hair fall out. We were open about my diagnosis at school and two years later, I feel like it was the right call. Our principal warned me (in a kind way) that the word cancer will bring out stories about peers grandparents & other relatives dying of cancer because that does happen sometimes. I proactively pointed out how my sister and their grandmother had had breast cancer and are both fine now. I also talked to them about what they felt I should do with my bald head. They both felt strongly in favor of hats so I wore them when we together in public. I was more relaxed on my own but I did not want to make them uncomfortable. I checked in with them before bed frequently to see how they were doing. Eventually we started taking one son to a wonderful counselor. That's probably more than you were looking for but that's my experience! Best of luck to you.

Dx 2/2017, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 2/28/2017 AC Chemotherapy 9/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/30/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/1/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Chemotherapy 8/1/2018 Xeloda (capecitabine)
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May 1, 2019 10:18AM HappyAnyway wrote:

AliceBastable, thanks for the quick response. My daughter knows that I am taking chemo, hence the hair loss. I told her that the medicine that will ultimately make me better may make me feel sick on occasion. I asked her this morning how she felt about me coming to school bald. She said don't worry mama, I have already told my friends! She is such a sweetheart.

MountainMia, she is coping well. She expresses her feelings better than her 15 yo and 18 yo sisters. She makes up songs about my illness. They are very silly and sometimes crude, but I appreciate the fact that she can release her feelings. Thank you for asking about her.

exbrnxgrl, thank you for your perspective as a teacher. I emailed my daughter's teacher when I was first diagnosed. I emailed her again when I began treatment. I want her to be aware so she can keep on eye on my little one. I have told my husband and girls to speak with others and/or me. I also told them that we can find a therapist if they need professional support. I will check out the American Cancer Society.

Flynn, thank you for sharing your experience with me. That was exactly what I needed to hear!

I am sorry that we all have cancer in common, but I feel blessed to have you all.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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May 1, 2019 10:36AM HappyAnyway wrote:

Flynn, I'm going to check out hats now. I'll ask for her input when she gets home this afternoon.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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May 1, 2019 10:37AM Spookiesmom wrote:

That’s pretty much the way it went for me. My then 7 yo grandson asked me where my hair was. I told him I was sick, and the medicine I had to take made it come out. That nana would have hair again. He accepted that, went his merry way. His younger brother didn’t notice, or ask.

Reoccurrence 3-19. Dx IDC, Stage IIIA, Grade 3
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May 2, 2019 08:09PM - edited May 2, 2019 08:42PM by HappyAnyway

Spookiesmom, thank you for sharing. :) Your name makes me smile.

Update, one event done! I'm going to brag just a bit. My daughter received an award for "Demonstrating Excellence in Latin ll CP".

Edited to add, my little one wants me to go without a hat if I still have my buzz cut or with a hat if I'm bald.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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May 2, 2019 09:25PM - edited May 2, 2019 09:26PM by Flynn

Wow! That's great! My high school also taught Latin and I must say that I was not gifted in that area :)

I'm glad that you and your little one came up with a plan. I'm here pretty often if I can do anything for you. It's all a lot to go through.



Dx 2/2017, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 2/28/2017 AC Chemotherapy 9/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/30/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/1/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Chemotherapy 8/1/2018 Xeloda (capecitabine)
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May 2, 2019 09:48PM HappyAnyway wrote:

Flynn, thank you for being here for me.

She really struggled with Latin last year. This year she had a new teacher and really blossomed. Unfortunately, she isn't taking it next year. I'm still proud!

I hope that you and your family are well!

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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May 20, 2019 06:24PM HappyAnyway wrote:

My WBC was 0.6 on Friday. I received a Neupogen injection. I was afraid that I would miss my youngest daughter's ceremony today. I had lab work this morning. The Neupogen worked very well, bringing my count up to 6.1!

I had a really good day today. Little bit scored three awards! One for library, most improved reading and top math. Library you say? That's what she and I said, too. She said mama, I don't even like library! From the mouths of babes.

Only one more event the first weekend in June. I have chemo this Friday. Keeping my fingers crossed.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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May 21, 2019 12:47PM Flynn wrote:

Glad your wbc bounced back! I learned how to give myself the neupogen and had to give myself shots a few times. It never bothered me tho some people get very achy.

Yay for the 3 awards! It’s really wonderful that you got to make it. I’ll cross my fingers that you make it to the last event. I’ve never heard of a library award, either.

One of mine won an award for Champion of Curiosity at the school assembly last week. I laughed so hard! He is the kid who never just accepts what I say- he asks SO MANY questions. Now he’s actually earned an award lol.

Good luck with your next cycle.

Dx 2/2017, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 2/28/2017 AC Chemotherapy 9/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/30/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/1/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Chemotherapy 8/1/2018 Xeloda (capecitabine)
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May 21, 2019 02:29PM HappyAnyway wrote:

Flynn, thank you for the Neupogen info.

Champion of curiosity! I love it!

Thank you and I hope that you are well.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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Jun 9, 2019 09:04AM Flynn wrote:

Happy,

How are you doing? Did school get wrapped up? When I was in chemo, I was happy to have a less rigid schedule during summer but it was also tiring having my sons home more. I hope you’re finding the side effects manageable:)


Dx 2/2017, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 2/28/2017 AC Chemotherapy 9/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/30/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/1/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Chemotherapy 8/1/2018 Xeloda (capecitabine)
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Jun 9, 2019 10:25AM HappyAnyway wrote:

Hey Flynn! Thanks for checking in on me.

I wasn't able to attend the last event (low WBC), but my husband went and they had a great time.

I just had my last AC on Friday and should start Taxol in a couple weeks. Fatigue has definitely set in.

My girls are watching way too much TV and playing video games. Not ideal. We have also been playing a lot of card games.

I hope you have a nice summer with your family. Thanks again!


❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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Jun 9, 2019 11:40AM exbrnxgrl wrote:

Glad you were able to get your wbc count up and enjoy the ceremony. Friday was my last day of school. I will miss my students, but I’ll enjoy the time off before my new crop arrives . Have a wonderful summer

Bilateral mx 9/7/11 with one step ns reconstruction. As of 11/21/11, 2cm met to upper left femur Dx 7/8/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/7/2011 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 11/2011, IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 1, 1/15 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 11/21/2011 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 11/21/2011 Bone Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2014 Femara (letrozole) Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane)
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Jun 11, 2019 08:02AM HappyAnyway wrote:

Thank you for being a teacher, exbrnxgrl. Teachers hold a special place in my heart. I hope you have a nice summer.

❤️ Dx 4/10/2019, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (IHC) Chemotherapy 4/26/2019 AC Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Chemotherapy 7/19/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
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Jun 13, 2019 10:43AM Flynn wrote:

Happy, congrats on finishing AC! I hope that you can rest up a little bit and be ready to take on Taxol soon. I found Taxol much less tiring but I know that everyone is different. I hope you find the side effects tolerable. I’m certain this is not your idea of a fun summer but hopefully you’ll get great results from treatment!!

Dx 2/2017, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 2/28/2017 AC Chemotherapy 9/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/30/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/1/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Chemotherapy 8/1/2018 Xeloda (capecitabine)

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