Topic: Single life after a mastectomy

Forum: Singles With Breast Cancer — Singles with breast cancer who want to connect.

Posted on: Apr 29, 2011 08:32PM

Posted on: Apr 29, 2011 08:32PM

txkari wrote:

Hello --

I'm a 47 year old single, who was diagnosed with DCIS grade 3 in early March. The affected area is quite large ... 15 cm in one direction. I have had two partial mastectomies and they still don't have clear margins, so I will be getting a full mastectomy on the left side in a few weeks.

I guess I took the Dr's assurances that I would be OK, a little too much to heart. I was ready for a little surgery and radiation. I wasn't ready to be told I needed a full mastectomy. The reality of it hit me a couple of nights ago.

I haven't met with the plastic surgeon yet, so I'm not sure what my reconstruction plan is yet. My questions are ... how did you prepare yourself to see your body after the surgery? I'm rather large breasted (DD) so the difference is going to be pretty dramatic. Have you found that men can look past the changes in your body? Do they understand? I just want to know if I need to resign myself to being alone. Is there love after a mastectomy/reconstruction?

Thanks

Dx 3/4/2011, DCIS, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/0 nodes
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Oct 6, 2014 04:20AM jazzygirl wrote:

Just had to share....

Dx 9/14/2012, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 9/14/2012, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lumpectomy (Right) Radiation Therapy 1/6/2013 Breast Radiation Therapy 2/24/2013 Breast Hormonal Therapy 3/20/2013 Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 6, 2014 05:49PM grayeyes wrote:

Sorry I've been gone a couple of days.  Too busy and awake most of the night every night finishing whatever work needs to be done.

BB & Jazzy - Thanks for the advice and feedback. 

BB - I didn't talk directly with my oncologist.  A nurse talked with her and then called me.  I took Tamoxifen for 2-1/2 years, and I was supposed to switch to the AI.  I'm expecting this next AI to lead to hair loss, too, but the nurse said maybe not... we'll see. 

Jazzy - I'm sorry you're having so much joint trouble.  Like you, I wasn't sure about the joint discomfort.  I've been assuming I'm just out of shape.  But, now I'm thinking back to the leg pain I had while on Tamoxifen - it probably was related to the pills.  They say these pills cause these kinds of SEs, so that must be what's happening to both of us.

Anyway, I don't have the money right now for the Femara, so I decided to try a little experiment: I simply stopped taking the anastrozole 3-4 days ago.  Now I'm not taking anything except a baby aspirin and Vitamin D. (I feel so FREE!)  Maybe it's my imagination, but it seems the hair strands aren't falling as rapidly from my head now.  My knees are still bothering me.  Again, the hair loss could've been an overreaction on my part.  I don't know. 

LOL @ the comics - "woman with breast cancer, man with flu" - LOL - So true!

Enerva - Congratulations on your first open house.  Smile  Sorry that you had to return to the other job that you don't like.  Also, I hope you're feeling better soon.


 

2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 6, 2014 06:36PM jazzygirl wrote:

10/6- back to work today and it went okay. Client seems grateful to have me in helping. It is a real mess there, more so than when I left at the end of June. I will do what I can to help, because that is what we consultants do.....

Life- my joint pain is much better than it used to be, especially with working out more via the personal trainer. The things that bother me the worst are my feet (which already had plantars faciitis) and elbows. It was heaven when I got to take the 6 week vacation from the AIs last year. I hear you on that feeling of freedom. Makes us feel a bit more normal, doesn't it?

Hope everyone had a decent start to the week!

Dx 9/14/2012, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 9/14/2012, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lumpectomy (Right) Radiation Therapy 1/6/2013 Breast Radiation Therapy 2/24/2013 Breast Hormonal Therapy 3/20/2013 Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 6, 2014 07:55PM - edited Oct 7, 2014 12:53PM by grayeyes

This Post was deleted by grayeyes.
2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 7, 2014 05:56AM jazzygirl wrote:

Life- hair loss can come with menopause too. I got thrown into that when I had my ruptured appendix and TAH right around the same time as diagnosis. Looks like you had your ovaries out in 2013 which took away estrogen and now we have more gone. Your photos don't look that bad to me, but did not know the before. Your hair looks very full and healthy otherwise. Since you went off the AIs, maybe watch to see if you see new hair growing in the thinning areas?

Off to work, wishing everyone a good day.

Dx 9/14/2012, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 9/14/2012, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lumpectomy (Right) Radiation Therapy 1/6/2013 Breast Radiation Therapy 2/24/2013 Breast Hormonal Therapy 3/20/2013 Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 7, 2014 09:20AM grayeyes wrote:

Jazzy - Thanks - yes, my hair looks fine for now.  I always had enormous hair, though.  For most of my life, I wanted to have thinner hair.  And I expected early menopause and ovary removal to lead to some hair loss. 

But, last month, hair strands were falling as rapidly as they did at the start of chemo.  It was out of the ordinary.  So, I'm looking for a solution before the hair loss increases. 

The AIs do seem to speed up hair thinning - but not for all women!  So, to anyone else out there reading this - don't fret - you might not experience hair loss at all on AIs.  Smile

You have a good day, too, Jazzy!

2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 8, 2014 06:52AM jazzygirl wrote:

In the backyard this morning! Will have some better pics from the week will be coming with time. 

Hoping everyone here is doing okay. Made it through the first two days on the contract. So far, so good.

Dx 9/14/2012, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 9/14/2012, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Surgery 11/14/2012 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lumpectomy (Right) Radiation Therapy 1/6/2013 Breast Radiation Therapy 2/24/2013 Breast Hormonal Therapy 3/20/2013 Arimidex (anastrozole), Aromasin (exemestane)
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Oct 8, 2014 11:35AM grayeyes wrote:

BB - Thanks for the tips.  I wish the AIs would take the hair from other parts of my body - like my underarms and legs.  LOL.  I posted a photo above but deleted it later because I realized it really didn't show the diminishing hairline that I'm seeing in the mirror.  So, I'm going to keep a photo journal of my hairline for myself, just to see if there's really any difference as the AIs continue.

Like you, I wouldn't care as much about vanity if I were married to a good husband.  But I have a suspicion that those types of men are few and far between, anyway.  I have another suspicion that I'll admit right here, just between all of us:  I suspect that even the good husbands aren't exactly what they appear to be.  (I was married to one who appeared to be a good guy.) 

Meanwhile, being a single woman does have its benefits - if only we could become completely independent of the exes.  That seems to be the key - financial independence.  How to achieve that at this point in life...  I don't know, but that's my goal.  Somehow, some way.

2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 8, 2014 04:23PM grayeyes wrote:

BB - I hear ya'.  I'm in a bad place, too, financially.  If only I knew I'd be in this situation... I would've held onto some kind of paying job... just to keep my foot in the door somewhere.  I also wish I'd held onto my savings instead of wasting it on college courses.  I should've hidden my own money, instead of handing my little paycheck over to the husband when my children were little and I was working part time.  Several years ago, I took money from a very small pension I'd had at one job (it was only $2,000), and I spent it on family expenses - activities for the kids, gifts for the husband and my family.  I wish I still had that money - I could've used it to pay off my own medical bills.

Oh, well, there must be a solution to our problems.  If I find one, I'll let you know about it.  If you find one, I hope you'll let me know, too.  ;-)

2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 8, 2014 05:21PM juneping wrote:

jazzy - what a nice view you got there.

happy hump day everyone!! our office started banking hours (a weeks hours) so we'll have the holidays off for two weeks. so working some extra hours. just finished a deadline last friday and working towards the next one. boy....i am tired but i am also happy.

BB - it gets me upset everytime i read about your ex. what an a$$hole. take care of yourself.....living well is the best revenge. (((hugs)))

juneping.wordpress.com/ Dx 11/15/2013, DCIS Dx 11/15/2013, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 2/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-

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