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May 28, 2020 08:25PM
Hi HB -- It makes total sense that sense that you would relapse now ---- none of us have ever experienced such disruption in our lives. Although, I do feel my medical issues have given me life skills to handle this better than I would have. But the survival part of our brain says -- where is my old friend? the one who always gives me comfort and will get me momentary pleasure. Yup-- our survival instinct is activation during stress and these times are stressful.
I agree with MT -- what can you do that can give you comfort within your situation? For me -- I go out to the garden and dig some dirt. Each of us is different is what tools we use. I also use progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) -- when my Epstein Barr (EBV) flares, my nervous system goes into overdrive and PMR works really well for me to break me out of it.
Don't be so hard on yourself. I relapsed during chemo. I had been quit for 6 months and made it through surgery, radiation but I couldn't make it through chemo without my friends.
Instead of making quitting a goal right now, why not take the pressure off and instead the goal is to try different ways to cope when the urge comes up. We are all different and it might take you a few times to figure out what helps in one situation, what helps in another situation. Start building a tool box of tools Don't deny yourself a smoke, but just start practicing different ideas to see what does help.
It's like my EBV and using PMR to calm myself -- when my doctor explained what was happening to my nervous system, I researched and found that PMR disrupts the connection between my brain and my muscles and it calms me down. It's one tool for one situation for me. different situations need different tools.
Find your tools and then when the time is right, you will already have a toolbox full of things you can do. Good luck, I know you can do this.
VJ Sleight, 1st diagnosis: 1987, stage 2, ER+, 0/18 nodes, lympectomy, radiation and chemo. cancer free for 22 years, 10 months and 27 days. www.VJSleight.com
8/2/2010, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 0/0 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-