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Topic: Mother Diagnosed With Breast Cancer Last Week

Forum: For Caregivers, Family, Friends and Supporters —

A place to share your struggles and concerns about supporting and caring for a person you love diagnosed with breast cancer with others who understand.

Posted on: Feb 5, 2019 05:37PM

longwinter wrote:

Hi everyone - my mom (55) was diagnosed with breast cancer last week. From what they can tell through the many mammograms, her ultrasound and her biopsy, this appears to be Invasive Ductal Carcinoma Stage 1. Of course they'll know more after it's removed and that's about all I know at this point. 

I'm feeling A LOT of feelings. For one, I feel like a jerk because at Christmastime I had to go in for a breast ultrasound and diagnostic mammogram as I found a painful lump in my right breast. I'm 29 with two small children and was so nervous that I might have breast cancer that I vented to my mom often about it until the day of my appointment at which point the radiologist concluded through ultrasound that I have several cysts in my breast. They seem to grow and shrink depending on where I'm at in my cycle. He didn't want me to do the mammogram because he felt confident from the ultrasound. Two weeks later my mom had her routine mammogram which ultimately led to her diagnosis. So I'm feeling guilt about making a big deal out of my thing when she ended up actually having cancer.

I'm also feeling relieved that her cancer seems to be fairly contained (from what they can see) but I'm nervous for her about all that's involved - all of the doctor's appointments, tests, treatment, and possibly finding out it's worse than they think. Can they be confident of stage this early on? I know it's overwhelming no matter what stage or prognosis and I'm wondering what are some ways I can help her? 

So far she's taken herself to most of the tests, though my dad will take her to her surgery. She's pretty independent and doesn't like me to fuss over her too much but I've been trying to make dinner for her a couple nights a week. Other than that I just feel kind of helpless to how to help her without being a pain. I guess I'm also just looking for other daughters to talk to about how they coped without adding stress to their mom.


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Feb 6, 2019 05:54PM - edited Feb 6, 2019 05:55PM by WC3

About two weeks before I was diagnosed, one of my sisters was having a melt down because she needed a biopsy. She invited 6 friends to accompany her for moral support. It turned out to be benign. I do things a little differently...I would have gone to my biopsy alone if my mother hadn't insisted on accompanying me, but I don't blame my sister for being scared when she needed a biopsy. The prospect of having cancer is a scary thing. So don't beat yourself up over it.

Dx 2018, IDC, Left, 3cm, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Chemotherapy 6/1/2018 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 11/15/2018 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Feb 7, 2019 09:13AM longwinter wrote:

WC3, thank you for the response! My mom is like you, she likes to do things on her own which I understand. I let her know that I'm always here if she wants someone with her, but I also come with a 3 & 5 year old so that might be overwhelming. My other sibling is out of town for work until spring so it's just me right now. If you don't mind me asking, from your perspective what are some ways I can be helpful to my mom without being overbearing or making her feel worse about the situation? She is having a lumpectomy in the next two weeks. My dad is taking her to that but do you think she'll need care afterward? My dad isn't much of a caretaker, to be honest. 

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Feb 7, 2019 10:21AM Runrcrb wrote:

let your mother be your guide. I was 55 at diagnosis and my husband was in the hospital. I had a friend join me at dr consults but did all tests solo. I enjoyed being alone during chemo! Stopping by with a meal sounds great. Lumpectomy recovery usually is pretty straight forward. Talk to your mom about your worries but it sounds like she’s early stage and recovery prognosis is good.


Dx 6/27/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 6/27/2016, ILC/IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/22/2016 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/31/2016 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 2/9/2017 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy 4/23/2017 Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane) Surgery 12/13/2017 Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap
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Feb 8, 2019 07:12PM WC3 wrote:

longwinter:

I would just ask her if she needs anything.

Dx 2018, IDC, Left, 3cm, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Chemotherapy 6/1/2018 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 11/15/2018 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab)

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