August 26, 2013

I try

Did you know there is a direct relationship between the lack of estrogen after menopause and the development of osteoporosis? After menopause, bone resorption (breakdown) outpaces the building of new bone.

Although the results of my Dexa scan and blood works were okay. My onc gave me a call and told me he wants me to see a Osteoporosis nurse anyway. I think he wants me to be on Calcium and vitamin D supplements or something like that. He told me it's because I still have such a long road to go with the Tamoxifen and all. So it's all a precaution.

But for me it's another appointment at the hospital. Medications I have to take related to my cancer. I fucking hate it. I'm so tired. I have 4 hospital appointments scheduled in September, one at work... and this Friday it's Herceptin nummero 10/17.

Waking up in the morning is the worst. I have never been a morning person... but there are times I don't know how I'm going to cope with everything. I try. Man I try. To be positive. The stuff I tell myself... but it just doesn't always work. You're just happy to make it through another day. 

I still get so sad sometimes. About everything. But also about the lack of understanding from other people, especially when they're close to you. Words that can hurt so much. I tell myself they haven't walked in my shoes, so they don't know. They can't possibly know.

I did visit work again, which was good. It still feels weird and uncomfortable being there. But it's important for me as well. To interact with my colleagues. I get so overwhelmed though, when I'm in a room and all of a sudden six people show up and they all want to know how I'm feeling.

Of course there's lots of comments about the hair. There are days I love my hair, I love every single hair on my head. But when I look in the mirror I'm also reminded of the story and the pain behind it.

August 19, 2013

The one with the shrink

After I made the decision it was time for me to see a psychologist I had some visions of what that would be like. Yes most of them were influenced and inspired by TV and movies.

Big white offices. Interesting art. Gigantic comfortable sofas. Big tissue box on the table.

So I was a little surprised when I met my psychologist and she took me to this broom closet; big enough to fit a desk, two comfortable chairs and a small table. A boring framed beach photo. It was a little dark as well. No tissue box WTF?! But it is going to be my safe haven. The place where I can say anything, cry, scream and laugh without being judged.

That's exactly how it felt. She seemed nice, understanding, interested and at the same time she wasn't judging me. It was just our first meeting, but I didn't expect to tell her so much already. Basically we discussed what happened in my life after being diagnosed. WAY too much material to talk about when you have 50 minutes. But I think I gave her a pretty good sketch of my life right now, the girl I used to be and that I'm a little lost and sad right now.

I don't know what's gonna come from this. I don't expect miracles. But I'm hoping for some guidance, so I'll be able to finish my Herceptin. But I also think just talking to a stranger who doesn't know me at all... is a good thing. Because talking about it is so hard. Let's face it, we all have thoughts we don't share with anyone. So to be able to share them with someone without being judged must relieve some of the tension. Maybe, maybe she'll be able to help me a little bit more in the long run when I'm ready to pick up some of the pieces.We'll see how it goes.

Updated my hair diary

August 14, 2013

Here comes crazy

Exactly one year ago I had my surgery, a lumpectomy. I try not to think about it too much. What's the point?!

I'm here now.

A long road it was and still is. I think that is the hardest part. The part that other people will never understand. That cancer is always on my mind these days. Finding distraction is so hard. After a year of treatment I feel like I have barely any strength/energy left. I still have to do six months of Herceptin. And it's Her-crap-tin.

There's so many small things, it's too much. Little things. A normal person wouldn't even bother to give it even one thought. But after a year on this crazy roller coaster I can cry over almost anything now. The Tamoxifen I haven't started and I'm so scared about the side effects. All the Herceptin I still have to do. Telling my story. Answering questions. It's hard to say it out loud, "I'm not doing so good right now." The side effects from chemo and radiation therapy. Confrontations. My hair which of course isn't growing as fast as I want to. Losing a nail. You name it. I cry about it.  

Pretty Tears In Her Face

So I have some news, I'm finally going to see a psych! I will have my first appointment on Monday. Really nervous. But then again, if you can name one thing I'm not nervous about these days I'll applaud you.

Also wanted to thank those that found my blog and emailed me. I'm sorry I haven't taken the time to respond personally but it's just so hard. Sometimes I just don't know what to say... but do know I appreciate every single email. 

August 5, 2013

Follow the peace

There's lots of pain and drama I write about. I don't focus enough on the good things (I seriously could be my own therapist).

I spontaneous went to the city by myself and bought a new record and then I decided to take my hair to the hair dresser. Yes for real. The weather has been so hot, way too hot to wear hats and I decided to dye it chestnut light brown. I already feel so much better when I look in the mirror. I'm starting to look more and more like a real person. And less like a patient. Of course I still want it to grow grow grow into a beautiful curly pixie cut. But at least this is a first step. So good stuff.

I mean after all you gotta give them something walking into a hair salon with that little hair. So I told part of my story but never crossed any borders I didn't want to. Again good stuff. Progress is progress no matter how small. 

Yesterday I went to this colleague with a big garden and she held an 'open garden'. She was so surprised to see me. Even though it was a short visit it was pretty good. These visits are hard for me and I should pat myself on the back because I did it.

I have Herceptin 9/17 coming up and well it's hard. I'm nervous. I hate it. But since this was suppose to be a positive post... I'm going to tell myself to be brave. Be brave. Be brave.

There are a billion things I'm worrying about... but right now there's not much I can do about it. So gotta let it go... Let it be. (Have you tried it? It really is a pain in the ass and oh so effing hard!)  

August 1, 2013

Being brave

I talked to my onc last Thursday. Made a list with things I wanted to talk about before I went. I spent like 45 minutes in his office. He is wonderful for taking the time like that. How important is it to have a good relationship with your doctor. Seriously. I trust this man. I sit there sobbing in his office but he's still able to make me laugh.

So we talked a lot. About everything. He convinced me I'm completely normal. He also complimented me on coming to him asking for help. So he's going to search for a psychologist for me... According to him there needs to be a certain chemistry between a patient and a pshych so he's going to try and find me a good match.

Tamoxifen also came up. But since I'm not feeling so great right now... and Tamoxifen has like a billion side effects and depression is one of them. My onc decided he wants me to see a psych first and feel better. Which is quite a relieve actually. I have enough on my plate for now. The results from the blood test showed that I haven't hit menopause yet... but it's coming close.

In the meantime I'm working very hard on the being the in now and not thinking about my next Herceptin treatment. One word: DISTRACTION. I sand and paint old furniture, I draw, make cards, send out packages, take photos, I take walks, hug the bunnies, I bought a record player... that sort of things.

Today I had my first walk outside without my hat. My hair is still really short but it's too hot for a hat right now. I think it'll look better in one or two months. Maybe I can even dye it by then and get rid off the grey hairs.

I also donated 50 of my photos for Ann Marie's Bravery Bags. She's making bags filled with goodies to lift spirits of those fighting the C - battle as well. My photos feature strong and inspiring words with sweet and pretty backgrounds. So happy to be part of this project!