Jun 24, 2018 11:49PM MinusTwo wrote:
Hey LisaMarie ... Now I'm getting worried again. Please check in.
Share your experiences of life after a breast cancer diagnosis and offer advice on how you cope with life's daily challenges, including how you develop a new daily/weekly routine while you deal with breast cancer.
Posted on: Jan 14, 2009 12:12AM
Some of us will, some of us won't, but it's an ugly beast to try to tackle alone. I think I'd rather have cancer than quit. Sadly, I can't quit cancer. Dunno if I can quit smoking or not, but I just read a study that says smoking (nicotine) interferes with and blocks chemo by 61%.
If I'm gonna have to go through this crap, it darned well better work. I've come to terms with every other aspect of this mess I've been presented with so far. Sometimes with tears, sometimes with humor, sometimes with quiet hugs from hubby. Smoking not so much. I like it. It's my friend, my crutch, my safe harbor in a crazy world. It's killing me. It's time to say good-bye.
My quit date is 1/19/09. My husband will be joining me. Cold turkey for me, patches for him. (I am avoiding more nicotine just as much as I am sugar.)
Anyone out there care to join us?
Posts 12871 - 12900 (12,998 total)
Jun 24, 2018 11:49PM MinusTwo wrote:
Hey LisaMarie ... Now I'm getting worried again. Please check in.
Jun 25, 2018 03:38PM VJSL8 wrote:
Allan Carr's book is great to build motivation, not so good on tools to quit. That is what my book is about -- different tools, different things to look at. Offer for a free copy is still open.
Also if anybody has any questions, let me know. I'm flat on my back for probably at least another month and I'm bored silly. I've discovered on-line clearance centers and something needs to stop me before I go broke. (not really, but I'm finding all kinds of stuff I didn't know I needed). When this first started I did worry about a recurrence since it started with a loss of appetite. Good news is that I've dropped 17 pounds since April 7th without trying and all scans, ultrasound, blood tests are basically normal. Current theory is that my gall bladder has stopped working since I do have some pain there. I am waiting for an upper GI and gallbladder function scan and then hopefully they will take it out. But I'm stuck lying down since now when I stand up, I get horribly nauseated.
Jun 25, 2018 03:47PM MinusTwo wrote:
Oh VJ - so sorry to hear you're a 'captive'. That's just not your style. Thank heaven's it's not a recurrence. I've never heard of gall bladder failure. Is that a pretty easy surgery if they determine that's the cause? Is it something you can have done close to home or will you have to travel to LA? I'll keep you in my thoughts.
As for the on-line clearance centers.... oh oh. I'm a reader so even though lying around would become tiresome, I always have a ton of books on my lists.
Jun 25, 2018 03:54PM VJSL8 wrote:
I don't know too much about it except from Dr. Google. Until I have a definite diagnosis, my doctor doesn't get into hypothetical. And I'm certainly not a "typical" case since for a long time the pain was very vague, it is the lack of appetite that is the main symptom. I do try and eat but I can only get a couple of bites down before I'm full. It really is weird.
Jun 25, 2018 04:00PM MinusTwo wrote:
When I couldn't eat, I drank Carnation Instant Breakfast with added protein powder. The protein I used - recommended by MD Anderson - was Nestle's Bene-Protein. It mixes with anything (liquid, applesauce, mashed potatoes) and has no taste or gritty feeling in your mouth. Please do send an update when you know something.
Jun 29, 2018 11:49AM - edited Jun 29, 2018 11:49AM by lisamarie68
Hi Everyone , I am so sorry but I am working Dialysis and the hours are brutal . I get up at 1 am to be to work by 2;30 am and sometimes get out at 5:30 pm... so tired .. and when im not there I am with ,my mom ... she was diagnosed with Alzheimers ... and every day just gets busier .. I love and miss you all so much .... xoxoxoxox
Jun 29, 2018 04:16PM MinusTwo wrote:
Oh LisaMarie - thanks SO much for checking in. You're working 15 hour days!!! Hope you get time off for meals. And then taking care of your Mom? When do you sleep? Good heaven's girl. We'll keep you in our thoughts.
Jul 1, 2018 04:41PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
Hey I need to vent for a minute. I know there are not many people on this thread anymore which makes me feel like the last struggling smoker on earth. Today is day 10 for me and I am a hot mess. All I want to do is cry or lay on my bed where it's cool and quiet, my safe spot. Today is Sunday, tomorrow we meet the plastic surgeon for consult on reconstruction at time of mastectomy. I am so ready to just get this surgery over with already. Thursday night I had an MRI which left me on my last nerve. Wow, I did not expect that MRI to take me to limit of what I thought I could endure. I want to smoke so stinking bad right now. I hate that I am an emotional wreck because I must have no life coping skills without my smokes. My buddy if you will. I tell myself there is no shame in having a relapse as long as you quit again but don't want to give in to it either. This sucks!! If I was home alone, you can bet your sweet patootie, I would be out on my deck having a smoke right now. My DH is here and I don't want to disappoint him.
Thanks for listening.
Jul 1, 2018 06:40PM MinusTwo wrote:
chikita - heavens no, you're not the 'last man standing'. You're just one of the few who will admit that it's a royal bitch. You are far, far from the last smoker on earth. Maybe "not broken" will come by. She's a long time good friend on this site that still hasn't laid them down. But we still love her. Lots of people have dropped off. Did they stay the course & move on from a breast cancer site? Or relapse? Hard to tell.
Yes, you could start again - but then you'd just have to go through these first 10 days all over again. Yes - smoking is/was our best friend. It never let us down. It was always there when we had a crisis. Hmmmm.
I didn't quit because of my lungs or because of cancer. I quit (for the fifth & last time) when I got an osteoporosis diagnosis. Turns out smoking has a devastating effect on women's bones. I did NOT want to break a hip and be warehoused in some facility for weeks. The statistics are not good for older women ever getting their lives back. I'm a bit paranoid about being stuck w/o being able to blow & go along with my life.
Glad to hear your DH is supporting you - even if it's just that you don't want him to know how bad it is. Read last week (WebMD I think) that nicotine is definitely as addictive as cocaine.
Come & vent anytime. We're all on your side. If this is the right time for you, we'll be excited to celebrate with you. Or we'll stand by until you try again. But really... you've made it 10 days girl. That's FANTASTIC.
Jul 1, 2018 06:41PM MinusTwo wrote:
judi - don't know if you ever check in but just in case... Happy Canada Day.
Jul 1, 2018 07:21PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
MinusTwo- Thank you for your response, I was hoping you would be around today. My daughter said I turned into a hot mess the last time I quit too. I started googling emotional after quitting smoking and found out I am not alone in my crying jag.
Thank goodness the madness passed and I didn't go out to smoke. I have a pack of smokes in my old smoking spot with a note on them that says, "Not today Satan! " I need to make a list like VJSL8 said in her book of my reasons. There are a couple of things I can tell already that are positive from not smoking. 1. I can breathe better. 2. I can smell again. 3. I don't stink. Put that out there too. If I fall it will be in that place.
I didn't know smoking was bad for your bones too. No wonder my MO wants to do a bone density test. It sounds like the pills are not good for our bones either. I hope none of us end up in a rehab for any reason especially a broken hip. I am quitting because I want to heal up faster from the surgery and just for my overall health. I had a low dose CT scan of my lungs for cancer. I have a nodule in my left lung. Very tiny and not something they are concerned about but still it does make one wonder what that might become.
That nicotine is a tricky one, like the devil himself. Last time I quit for 15 months cold turkey. I am using my 0 nic vape this time. What my neighbor calls stupid cigarettes. When she quit she smoked cigarettes that were not tobacco for over a year. There was special name for them they had like levels that you smoked your way down to nothing. Hey it gets me by in my worst moments. Kind of like a pacifier. lol
Jul 1, 2018 07:46PM MinusTwo wrote:
chikita - I kept half a pack in the door of my freezer for 3 years. My longest quit before my last was 2 years, so I wanted to "be prepared".
One nice thing - I just had a lovely gin & tonic and didn't even think about smoking. I think I mentioned that I had to quit drinking for quite some time because it was such a smoking trigger. Glad you're starting a 'positives'. Add to that all the money you'll be saving. Exotic vacation? New clothes?
Jul 1, 2018 08:12PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
That was smart putting those smokes in the freezer. Mine are sitting out. I am sure they are all dried out and would taste super nasty at this point. I also have one cig squirreled away in a small box in the bag that I take to the Dr appts and tests. It's my just in case backup.
The craving are less intense at day 10. The crying jag was the rough part on days 9 and 10. Hoping for a good appt with PS in the morning and less crying for heavens sake. Thank you for the encouragement. Hoping I don't have lapse. But I won't beat myself up if I do, like hubby says, I have been smoking for 43 years. It's gonna take some time to reprogram the old girl.
Don't be confused by my name change, I finally found where I could change it and add my pic. My mother nicknamed me Carol Annie Lump Lump when I was a little kid...don't ask me why, she can't remember either. Mothers intuition? Never seemed to fit better than it does right now. Although at this time we are only aware of a lump not two.
The best thing so far was coming back to change clothes after the MRI Thursday night. They had me put my clothes in a locker. When I opened that locker up I could smell my clothes! They smelled so good. Same thing the other day doing laundry, I could smell the fabric softener. Love that.
Is webwriter that started this thread around at all? Did she quit?
Jul 1, 2018 09:48PM MinusTwo wrote:
Yes... I was confused by the name change. Fun story.
Maybe it's better that you let your smokes dry out & get nasty???
I wasn't diagnosed until 2011 so I didn't know Webwriter. You can click on her name and see her recent postings, and there haven't been any since 2009. It's natural that people move on at some time after their cancer treatment. Many folks on these boards have moved to Facebook friends. I don't do facebook.
I dropped out the first time too when I thought all was well. Then I stayed active when I came back after my recurrence. if I can, I want to pay forward anything I learned from these amazing people. Also I've made continuing friends on some of the "getting on with our life" threads. And I've been fortunate to meet several BCO members in person during my travels. SIx and counting now.
Jul 1, 2018 09:53PM MinusTwo wrote:
April - if you're still lurking occasionally, how's the new place & the new job?
Jul 2, 2018 11:35AM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
Plastic surgeon squashed my idea of having a mastectomy with reconstruction when lumpectomy is all that is needed. He said mastectomy was a disfiguring surgery and the end result would not be pleasing like a natural breast. Plus he said since I was a smoker, he wouldn't be able to do nipple sparing and healing would be a problem etc etc. In the end he said he would do the surgery if I really wanted to but it was not necessary in his opinion. Since that was also the opinion of every other doctor I have seen, I guess I will go with a lumpectomy and radiation. Still letting that sink in but have started the ball rolling on surgery date. Haven't smoked yet. Not ruling it totally out today. since he pretty much said my circulation will never improve from smoking no matter how long I quit. bah.
Jul 2, 2018 01:20PM MinusTwo wrote:
CarolAnne - You haven't posted any details about your diagnosis, but even so, it's impossible to be a Monday Morning Quarterback. But it is your absolute right to have a mastectomy if you choose. It is your right to have reconstruction also. That is a federal law. It sounds like you have met with several other docs? I don't know where you are located but are any of them at a major teaching hospital or a National Cancer Center? Here is the link to check those facilities. https://www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-ce...
I do understand there may be a healing issue & the doc's reluctance, and I have read stories here about problems with healing. And the type of reconstruction may be limited. I've also read stories about how the docs will test your blood for nicotine before proceeding. But I chose a bilateral mastectomy for DCIS with TEs and exchange to implant reconstruction 7 months later. I smoked for over 40 years, but not in the 3 years before my diagnosis. I was unable to have nipple sparing surgery, but that was due to the proximity of the cancer to the nipple. But I had absolutely very pleasing results & NO disfiguration after the initial 3-6 months of swelling & adjustment. We're all different, but just sayin....
Have you talked to a medical oncologist? I chose to meet with one before any surgery even though "everyone said" chemo wouldn't be needed. I learned so much about the process by talking to him & having him on my team. In addition to meeting with my BS, I also met with my PS before making any decisions - and had second opinions for both specialties.
If you haven't seen a cardiologist or a pulmonologist or vascular specialist - I don't think your doc can unequivocally state that your circulation will not improve. Mine has improved, as have my lungs.
Hard decisions. Hang in there. We've got your back.
Jul 2, 2018 09:22PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
MinusTwo. How about one of those gin and tonics right now? I sure feel like I could use one. I have a pea sized IDC in my right breast at 12:00. It was found on a routine mammogram. The surgeon couldn't even feel it. I am the 5th person in the school district where I work to have breast cancer in the past year. My gut is telling me to get a mastectomy but the MO, BS, PS and my GP have all told me to get a lumpectomy since my tumor is so small etc. My grandmother had a mastectomy in her 40's and lived to be 99. Right now I just want to get the tumor out of my body. I like the idea of mastectomy to avoid radiation. Hoping I won't need chemo either but won't know until the tumor is out along with some nodes.
I could go to the University of Michigan. I just don't know since they are telling me I have the most common kind of bc and this will be a bump in the road for me. If my MRI comes back with anything new or concerning, I will go to U of M. That is some good advice, I appreciate it.
Thank you for your encouraging words. My poor DH is tired of talking about bc. My dad would talk with me all night about it but he gets so emotional so we just end up crying a lot. lol He is 87 and wishes it was him. This thing sure has an impact on everyone you are close too.
Jul 2, 2018 10:50PM MinusTwo wrote:
CaroleAnnie - I got Soooooo much support from others going through what I was at the same time. If you check "all topics" you can scroll down and find just about anything. Radiation, reconstruction, vitimins, etc. Below are the two latest surgery threads.
Surgery June 2018
Surgery July 2018
Yes, people who haven't 'been there' have no way of really understanding what we're going through - no matter how supportive they are.
Jul 10, 2018 01:41PM katiec3598 wrote:
I had lots of issues with surgery because of my smoking one was a dangerous blood clot after my mastectomy that was very painful. My appointment in March with my plastic surgeon said doing a lift on my left side to more match my mastectomy side I would for sure lose my nipple. I already couldn't save the one on my cancer side, :(
Jul 10, 2018 01:53PM katiec3598 wrote:
So I quit smoking 4/14/18. That was the one year anniversary of getting my cancer dx. I went on Wellburtin and it helped a lot.It helped me have a better attitude about it. 3 weeks in I quit cold turkey (no patches etc) because that is what effects the surgery. Before I quit I wrote down all the positive things that quitting smoking will do. #1 Having more time with family #2 Healthy skin #3 Smelling better #4 Food will taste better #5 Lower blood pressure #6 being a good role model to my children.I can be more active When I would feel like I wanted to smoke I would read it. It was mainly time with my family that motivated me. It feels like it has been forever since I last smoked. I still sometimes get the urge to smoke but it goes away pretty quickly. It has been nice going on vacation and not having that effect where we stay.
Jul 10, 2018 02:04PM MinusTwo wrote:
katie - thanks for posting. And congratulations on 3 months. Writing a list is a great way to see all the benefits. In this day and age, the cost savings is also significant - so more money for those vacations. You're right - one more benefit is not worrying about where to find a place to have a quick smoke.
Jul 10, 2018 03:50PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
Good job Katie! It is about the hardest thing to do ever. Such a good feeling knowing you did it and that it's having such a positive affect on your health and your life. I quit just 2 weeks ago and I still want to smoke so bad sometimes. Ugh. I am not going to smoke but I will have to admit I still want to. It's good your surgeon didn't talk to you like mine did me. The plastic surgeon I went to told me since I smoked I my circulatory system would never be good enough to have reconstruction no matter how long I was quit for...he was a total jerk. He also told me he does those surgeries on people that have a bmi of 25 or less and your is 27 or 28! Apparently I was too fat for him too. Needless to say I chose to do a lumpectomy after talking to him.
I noticed right away that I can smell better since I quit. It was pretty exciting to me to be able to smell how good our clothes smell coming out of the dryer. haha.
Jul 10, 2018 05:05PM MinusTwo wrote:
CarolAnnie - so glad you chimed in. I've been wondering how you've been doing. Two weeks is EXCELLENT. Hang in there girl. I can't remember - are you going to have chemo after your surgery? Or radiation? Both cause fatigue so maybe you can sleep away the weeks. LOL
Jul 11, 2018 02:19AM belleeast wrote:
I have been a lurker/follower of this thread for a long time-think when Lisa joined in years ago. I have always been encouraged by the support given here! Well, I had my last smoke June 6, 2018! I was on vacation with family the first 2 weeks now back in my home environment it has been a lot rougher!! I dream at night I smoked a cigarette!! Today I choose not to smoke
Jul 11, 2018 09:43AM MinusTwo wrote:
Belle - so glad you posted. Congrats. You're at more than a month. Good for you. I'd forgotten we used to say 'TODAY I CHOOSE NOT TO SMOKE'. Hang in there.
Interesting about remembrance days. I can't remember the day I bought my first house or even when had my bilateral mastectomy but I can remember the last day I smoked as well as my only son's birthday. And it's TODAY!!!! No joke - 7/11/07. I have some doc appointments across town but I'm planning to take myself to a fabulous lunch in between.
Jul 11, 2018 10:07AM belleeast wrote:
Minus, enjoy your lunch! I am going to the Children's Museum with one of my daughters plus 3 grandsons today. After we are going to a new (to us) sushi place where the sushi are the size of burritos 😳 or you can get as nachos or in a bowl! Sounds like they just have limited seating so may do take out version.
Chantrix has helped with my cravings/desire to smoke even though I have stayed at .5 pill once a day, I had side effects when I increased to 2x day.( Tinnitus ) It has pretty much resolved, a lot better anyway. So I gave chantrix a 2nd try but stayed at just once a day. My tough times are later in the day and of course-all my triggers Lol
I hope everyone has a great day! Today I choose not to smoke
Jul 11, 2018 03:07PM CarolAnnieLumpLump wrote:
Belleeast, I am a new person here too. Sounds like your daughter has her hands full with three boys! I dreamt I smoked a cigarette too, it was so real. It seems like the longer you go without the easier it gets. I am about ready to throw out my nasty dried up pack I have that has a note stuck to it "Not today satan". lol. I look at it everyday and tell myself "that's right, not today".
MinusTwo, I hope your appointments were good ones and that your lunch was better! 11 years smoke! It's the best thing you ever did for yourself, maybe that is why you remember the date so clearly. Congratulations, you have made it past the 10 year mark where all the benefits of quitting are in full swing.
Today I got my hair all chopped off in a cute pixie style. Getting ready for surgery and whatever treatments are in my future. Figured I didn't want hair you had to curl or fuss with so I did myself a favor and got rid of it. We are going on a trip through the smokies to North Carolina on Friday for a few days. Then we are going to Put-In Bay for the weekend next weekend. We have never been there before, it's an island in Lake Erie. DH is stoked about going walleye fishing so it's good he has something to look forward to. A distraction if you will. The waiting until my surgery on 8/8/18 is killing me. I wish it was today or that I already had it.
I hope you have a great day too. I choose not to smoke too. Looking forward to the 21st so I can be one month too. Only 10 more days.
Jul 15, 2018 11:34AM lisamarie68 wrote:
Hello Everyone , and welcome to the new ladies ... this thread maybe slow but never dead ... great ladies here ... My newest dilemma is I have not had my period for close to 2 years now .. the hot flashes and mood swings are nuts .. but yesterday I started to bleed .. my mom had uterine cancer and im so scared ... i guess I need to see the doc but im mentally not prepared to start yet another cancer journey ... not saying thats what it is ... but still none the less scared to death .. I had to quit working at dialysis as I hated every minute of it and it was just too long hours and soooo much stress.... so I am due to start working 3- 12 hr shifts at the hospital on Med surg unit Monday and now this !!!! yesterday i go to the bathroom and ob my blood ... very bad back pain and cramping beyond words ... I am so sorry to come here and complain ... anyway Mom is having her good days and bad days .. she fell last week and cracked her head open .. I do the best I can to be there for her all the time ... anyway Minus ... miss you ... have you heard from bosom ? i really miss her .. what about Judy ? ... maybe April is out there too ... love and miss you all very much ..
Jul 16, 2018 05:41PM MinusTwo wrote:
Hey LisaMarie - oh what a PITA with the bleeding. Please do make an OB/Gyn appointment, but try to stay positive. There are so many things that could cause the bleeding. Isn't it amazing how our thought immediately jump to cancer after the first batch? I remember cramping & pain. Mine was fibrocystic growths - NOT cancer & I had no more problems after the uterus was removed. I'm glad you quit the dialysis center. Those hours are impossible for a healthy 25 year old with no other issues to deal with. I'm for sure not 25 anymore. Keep the surgery schedule, but take the time to see the doc. I worry about you being the sole caregiver of your Mom AND working full time. Really a load!!! Is her obnoxious boy friend still there too? Do you have to feed him? Is your Mom still smoking? I expect that is hard on you too. Such a temptation.
how are your kiddos and your grandchildren? I know you miss them all. Hoping you get to talk regularly. It's not the same as holding them, but still...
Haven't heard from Judi in a long time. I think April has a new job & I believe a new place to live. Hope she'll check in. VJ posts from time to time. Bosum will PM occasionally. She'OK - dealing with her Mom and boys and doesn't check in much any more but always asks about you. You should send her a PM.
Holding you in the light and WAITING to hear what the DOC says.