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Topic: Open Letter

Forum: Managing Side Effects of Breast Cancer and Its Treatment —

This is a place to discuss concerns, tips and strategies for all types of side effects from all types of medications and treatments, (chemo/rads/hormonal/targeted/pain meds/etc.

Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 04:38PM

Colt45 wrote:

I am a husband/ caregiver...

I didn't know where this should be posted---and since my wife is going through treatment now, I just picked here.

I have lurked since my wife's diagnosis and have been posting only for a few days. I can recognize a sisterhood when I see one. An army of kind souls.

I am humbled by your humanity. Your grace. Your power.

My wife says she's just doing what she has to when I tell her I'm proud of her. But she's doing more than enduring treatment for self serving means. She's doing it with a grace that doesn't frighten our 2 small, sensitive girls. THAT is strength. I see my wife comforting our 4 year old over something trivial (the kind of thing only 4 year olds think is apocalyptic) and I see a women of strength and beauty the likes of which I cannot imagine life without.

I read your posts and I see my wife or sister or mom. I see a beautiful woman who is power and grace and humanity.

I read accounts of people letting you down or failing to support you.

It breaks my heart to think that you aren't being held or hugged or listened to to the degree that you deserve or more importantly NEED.

You are beautiful. Worthy of love and support and someone is missing out on YOU. It's not your fault. People with a heart and a soul and a brain are inspired by you. Touched by you... whether you think you deserve it or not.

People in pain don't reach out like you do to comfort others. You ask very little. You deliver day after day for others. And you think you aren't worthy of praise or wonderment or fanfare. You are wrong.

You are to be cherished and held and loved. And even on days when someone in your physical environment doesn't seem to be doing quite enough of this, you are being cherished and held and loved from afar by someone you have touched----even if quite by accident.

Know this to be true.

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Posts 61 - 90 (219 total)

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Sep 8, 2013 06:51PM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Sep 8, 2013 07:48PM belleeast wrote:

Thank you... I needed to read this today.

Dx 8/5/2011, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/17/2011 Lumpectomy: Right Chemotherapy 9/19/2011 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxol (paclitaxel), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 2/6/2012 Breast
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Oct 11, 2013 12:24PM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Oct 11, 2013 01:03PM - edited Oct 15, 2013 10:32AM by Moderators

This Post was deleted by Moderators.
"I will sit right down, waiting for the gift of sound & vision" David Bowie, Rest in pax, my beloved changeling... Dx 6/8/2012, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, 25/30 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Oct 11, 2013 01:11PM - edited Oct 15, 2013 10:32AM by Moderators

This Post was deleted by Moderators.
"I will sit right down, waiting for the gift of sound & vision" David Bowie, Rest in pax, my beloved changeling... Dx 6/8/2012, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, 25/30 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Oct 26, 2013 07:58AM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Dec 13, 2013 07:54AM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Dec 14, 2013 05:11AM badger wrote:

@Colt45, that was lovely, thanks so much.

My hubby listens to public radio at work.  To the Best of our Knowledge had a story about the Scar Project.  He called me, all choked up, to tell me how much he loves and admires me.  It was very touching.  What a great support.  We need men like you.  Hope you and your wife are doing well.  ♥

Find your calm. Move forward from this place. Dx 12/22/2009, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 1, 2014 09:18PM Michele2013 wrote:

bump

Stage 1 Thyroid Cancer. Chemo induced cardiomyopathy, now have a defibrillator. Dx 10/29/2012, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIA, Grade 3, 4/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 11/28/2012 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 4/29/2013
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Apr 2, 2014 05:06AM faerywings wrote:

I am just seeing this today and what a beautiful post, Colt. I am blessed in so many ways to have a very supportive family and friends. I might not have a lot in the material aspects of life, no fancy vacations or designers clothes, even grocery shopping is a difficult due to a very tight budget. But when you see a post like this, it makes all of that disappear.  

I hope that you and your wife and girls are doing great!

"No Day But Today" ~Rent Dx 1/17/2014, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 1, ER+/PR+ Surgery 3/2/2014 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 4/6/2014 Breast
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Jun 21, 2014 03:19PM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Jul 11, 2014 09:10AM RaiderGirl wrote:

Im brand new here. I have not posted anything about me (yet). But I had to reply to your post.

I hope you know just how perfect your letter is .A moment of compassion even from a stranger can matter deeply to a person in emotional pain.

Your words took my breath away.

BC is an ugly , painful, scary disease and it can't be made better by wearing a cute little pink T-shirt. When I see a sea of pink in a BC walk I get even madder. Look how many have been hurt by BC and still no closer to a cure than a decade ago. Dx 6/26/2014, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Radiation Therapy 8/25/2014 3DCRT: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 12/7/2014 Aromasin (exemestane)
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Jul 29, 2014 11:28PM Srh242 wrote:

bump

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Jul 30, 2014 02:48PM Lily55 wrote:

has anyone heard from Colt lately? I often think of him, his posts were so heartfelt

Dx 4/2012, ILC, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 7/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 5/2/2012 Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 8/14/2012 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/18/2013 Aromasin (exemestane) Radiation Therapy 3/7/2019 External: Bone Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Jul 30, 2014 10:15PM Colt45 wrote:

Hi, Lily.  Though I post sparingly and am here less, I still lurk to check in on the friends I made.  You are 1 such friend, always kind and supportive.  Thank you for that.  My wife is doing well.  I do think about you, too, and so many of the other great ladies here.  I answer PMs as I receive them and I hope I do help some folks like so many here helped me (to cope and better support my wife).  All positive things to you.  So nice to touch base.

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Jul 30, 2014 10:40PM blondiex46 wrote:

Colt that was so beautiful I want to print it out where I can read it often...u r a special man

Original 8/96 - 1cm, chemo, rads. Recurr..9/09...Mets to lungs, chest wall, lymph nodes under arm & chest, cervical & lumbar spine, ribs, hip. Femera, Falsodex, Zometa, Xeloda, Gemzar,Taxotere, Adriamycin,Havalen.WENT OFF CHEMO 7/20/14 Dx 9/1/2009, 3cm, Stage IV, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Sep 3, 2014 12:58PM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Sep 3, 2014 03:09PM Luvmydobies wrote:

God bless you Colt! Your wife is a very blessed woman to have such a loving and caring man. I'm sorry I just came across this post. I'm so glad that I did. I have a great hubby and he was wonderful during treatment however he just can't understand why I still worry about aches and pains and I worry when I just don't feel right. I know my anxiety and stress contribute to a lot of my not feeling right though. Sometimes I just want him to hug me and tell me it's ok instead of getting frustrated when I'm crying. He eventually comes around but it's when I'm in the moment that I need him to hold me. He says he's just trying to push me to overcome my fears. I still wouldn't trade him for the world. I know this isn't easy for him either.

Anyway, thanks for beautiful words. I feel like I just received a hug from a very genuine friend even though we don't know each other. So I'm sending a hug back to you and your wife. Glad she's doing well! 

Dx 1/16/2013, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 2/5/2013 Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 3/26/2013 Abraxane (albumin-bound or nab-paclitaxel), Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide)
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Sep 3, 2014 04:56PM Colt45 wrote:

Love going out to Blondiex46 and Luvmydobies... and all the ladies here.  

I bump this post every so often in case it gets buried.

I think we men are just scared.  We're scared for you because we love you and we're scared for us because we need you.

Desperately.

We don't always show how we feel.  I dunno.  Maybe sometimes we can't.  Can't because we aren't good at it.  Can't because we're afraid to try....because it might cause us to just fall apart.

I suspect that some men are barely keeping it together and can't really get themselves to stare this in the face-----not because we don't believe you'll be okay... but because even the thought that something dares to threaten you is too much to bear. It's not something we can fix.  In many, many cases you'll be fine despite this.  But it just exposes us to our utter lack of power in this instance and that frightens and angers us.

What is left is merely to hold, hug and support.  And I pray we all get better at that for no other reason than you need us to.

We love you.  Our means of delivering that message is often clumsy and inadequate-----but if there was some machine you could hook up to us that showed the burning desire we have that everything gets better for you-----you'd see our that our hearts are beating FOR you.  They always have.  Always will.

I pray you all get that needed warmth.

You amazing, beautiful people deserve it.

Love to you all.

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Sep 3, 2014 11:47PM blondiex46 wrote:

Colt ditto

U are so good with words, men would love 4 u to relay their feellings I am sure, u say things so eloquently.  Thank u, what a wonderful man u r

Original 8/96 - 1cm, chemo, rads. Recurr..9/09...Mets to lungs, chest wall, lymph nodes under arm & chest, cervical & lumbar spine, ribs, hip. Femera, Falsodex, Zometa, Xeloda, Gemzar,Taxotere, Adriamycin,Havalen.WENT OFF CHEMO 7/20/14 Dx 9/1/2009, 3cm, Stage IV, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Sep 4, 2014 04:01AM Lily55 wrote:

colt i so wish you would run a cancer partners workshop as you are so empathic and eloquent!

Great to hear from you x

Dx 4/2012, ILC, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 7/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 5/2/2012 Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 8/14/2012 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/18/2013 Aromasin (exemestane) Radiation Therapy 3/7/2019 External: Bone Chemotherapy Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Sep 15, 2014 11:51AM Srh242 wrote:

Thank you Colt. Great words. I

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Oct 28, 2014 07:09AM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Dec 1, 2014 08:04AM Colt45 wrote:

Bump
Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Dec 1, 2014 10:13AM Srh242 wrote:

bump

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Jan 14, 2015 03:15PM Colt45 wrote:

Bump

Husband Dx 10/9/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2012 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/13/2012 AC Chemotherapy 2/7/2013 Taxol (paclitaxel)
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Jan 19, 2015 02:07PM songbird68 wrote:

Hi Colt, thank you for this beautiful letter:)

Hope all is well for you both

x x

multifocal IDC and DCIS. Age 44 at dx. Cancer wanted a piece of me, it won't get the rest of me. Stay strong. Dx 8/7/2013, DCIS/IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 8/18/2013 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left) Hormonal Therapy 8/27/2013 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery 2/26/2014 Prophylactic ovary removal Surgery 6/18/2014 Prophylactic mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right) Surgery 8/2/2014 Reconstruction (right) Hormonal Therapy 9/9/2014 Aromasin (exemestane)
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Jan 24, 2015 02:14PM Sabel wrote:

Beautiful letter...

Dx 6/28/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Jan 27, 2015 01:34AM feelingfeline wrote:

Ditto

Dx 1/20/2012, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIIA, 3/22 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 2/7/2012 Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Chemotherapy 4/2/2012 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 7/30/2012 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy 8/5/2012 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/31/2015 Aromasin (exemestane)
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Feb 8, 2015 01:39AM KJE54 wrote:

Thank you, I have tears in my eyes from reading your letter. Twenty six years ago I was diagnosed and my husband left my two children and myself when I was diagnosed. I prayed to survive for my kids and am blessed - they are both married now with children. Now I've been diagnosed with two new breast cancers and hubby #2 left four days before this diagnosis. How wonderful to hear your love for your wife and her courage! This challenge opens up friendships and family relationships - so many blessings I cannot count! I know I can either have a pity party or a celebration of life! God bless everyone for your honest heartfelt stories, you are never alone!

Kj Elsey

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