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Breaking the ice

Discussion in 'Cancer Survivors and Loved Ones' started by trukinlady, Apr 3, 2010.

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  1. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA
    Hello everyone!

    Welcome to the group! I look forward to meeting all of you!:)

    I thought I'd break the ice by sharing a little about my experiences. I'm a 3 time cancer survivor. I lost my leg at age 3 to a sarcoma, had breast cancer at age 35, and ovarian cancer at 37. I've been in remission, and cancer free, for 9 years. Thank God!

    It is my intention to have an informal place where members can come to visit, share our stories, and just relax and have fun.

    Hope to see you on the board!:D
  2. martha1014

    martha1014 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 8, 2009
    Delhi, LA USA
    You have really been through it but glad to hear you have been cancer free for 9 years.

    I personally have not had cancer (been lucky) but my brother went through a difficult time. He had cancer of the lymph nodes. He was given 6 months to live. While at the hospital he started talking to another patient who told him he had the same kind of cancer and was also told he only had months to live but he had gone to Houston and had completely recovered. My brother went to Houston and received extensive chemotherapy and radiation and recovered. He has now been cancer free for 4 years.

    It just goes to show you should not give up. Always get a second opinion and keep fighting. Thank God he keep looking for a cure or otherwise he would have died.

    I have never heard of someone having cancer 3 times in their life. You are definitely an extraordinary person and so glad you had success in your recovery.
  3. Mary Kay

    Mary Kay ECF Guru ECF Veteran

    Apr 3, 2009
    West Tampa Fl.
    Hi, Trukin and Martha! Glad to see you up and running!
    My mother also had cancer 3 times, first cevical resulting in a total hysterectomy. 15 years later she had breast cancer.. a masectomy. Last, 6 years ago she had lung cancer and had a lobe of her lung removed.
    I think the cancer just spread from area to area but was caught early when it started to get big enough to be seen on a scan. She lived to be 85 and her thyroid began to go wrong. I think possibly she had another cancer somewhere that led to the thyroid problems..but as the thyroid was just the beginning of a 3 month long system collapse ending with her death, there was just no point in looking. Although she complained about pain in her side and demanded they do surgury to fix it..that left the Dr.s scratching their collective heads as no test or scan could find a thing wrong!
    What always amazed me wasthe fact that she never took the least bit of interest in her cancers..none. She just figured that they would cut it out and that was that!
  4. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA
    Hi martha1014!

    I'm glad to hear your brother is doing so well! :thumbs: Cancer is a terrible disease, but it can be successfully treated if caught early. I'm glad he sought another opinion, and decided to fight it. A positive attitude can make a difference in the outcome!
    Thank you for your kind words. I can't take the credit. I thank God for being there the whole way!:nun: He carried me through it all. He has a reason for my still being here. I don't know why yet, but I will someday.

    Also, thank you again for joining the group!

    Hi MaryKay!

    I'm so sorry to hear about your mother. She went through some hard times!
    It's heartbreaking to watch someone you love just slowly waste away. Did she have chemo? My doctors told me some patients develop secondary cancers actually caused by the chemo itself!
    My sister-in-law had cervical cancer, and was the same way as your mom. She had surgery and that was that. I've never understood why, but I guess each person has their own way of dealing with it.

    Many thanks to you too for helping me with the group! It is great to be up and running! :D
    See ya both on the boards!
  5. malyden

    malyden Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 31, 2008
    Just wanted to thank you for starting this group!! I survived breast cancer and have been cancer free for 5 yrs now. I have recently lost 2 cousins to cancer (one had lung and the other bone cancer - neither one smoked). My aunt who survived breast cancer over 15yrs ago was just told that the breast cancer is now in her lungs.
    As a cancer survivor I know that lots of love and support are needed, so again thank you for setting up this group!!
  6. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA
    Hi malyden!

    A 5 year Victory!! That's wonderful! Every year we have is a precious gift.

    I'm very sorry to hear about your family. It sounds like cancer has hit you and your family hard. My family is the same way. I had an Aunt who passed away from lung cancer and never smoked. Oddly enough, I'm the only one in my immediate family who has had it.

    No thanks are needed, but I appreciate it anyway. :)oops: Now I'm gonna cry!)

    I hope the group will be a unique place to just relax, have fun or vent to others who have been through it.

    Welcome to the group!:)
  7. Kate51

    Kate51 Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Mar 27, 2009
    Argyle Wi USA
    Hi all, and thanks to you Truckinlady, this is a very good idea.
    I want to talk about my sister-in-law, she is putting together a story line for me to post later. She is also a breast cancer survivor. Her name is Jo.
    My step daughter, Joanne, also known as "Jo" or Josie", was not quite so fortunate.
    She had a mole removed from her neck, which was a melanoma, about eight years before she left work one day, her stomach was hurting her terrible.
    She thankfully went to Dr., and they did a sonogram. They saw a spot of something on her stomach, also one on her liver, and sent her right away to another hospital for an MRI. And then another, and yet another a day or so later. By the time she got her first appointment, just a couple days, the spots already were larger, and more were found. This is a gal that thought she didn't need health insurance, a "self-payer", she liked to say.
    To make a long story short, by the end of about five days, her hospital bill was already over $20,000, and she did thankfully qualify for Wisconsin's Badger Care coverage, since she had a dependant son, our Grandson, who was only not quite 10 years old.
    She went into the hospital on day 20 from her first symptoms, and instead of her final PEP scan before Chemo got started, she was pronounced dead in the ER about an hour before her appointment. The whole time she was sick she was in horrible pain, she was becoming terribly dehydrated all the time, had to have many IV's for fluids, lots and lots of pain killer patches, couldn't eat but just drank like a fish, everything from water to soda to icecream shakes, but went down so fast it was frightening. Yes, she'd been a smoker, tired so hard so many times to quit, but smoking was allowed without a word from anyone! She said they really helped her be able to relax, eased her a lot.
    We of course were heartbroken, her Dad was uncharacteristically emotional, but we really all said the same thing ~ we were glad she didn't have to spend untold time with chemo or surgeries...that was just not meant to be. She went quietly, as if sleeping. Nine days after her 40th Birthday, which was duly celebrated!
    Just the weekend before she got sick at work, Josie and her sister came to help their Dad and me split wood, and we had a blast! A little over three weeks later she was gone.
    That was 3 years ago, now. Jo is always in our hearts, unspoken sometimes, spoken of lots! Her son has had some behavioral issues, was always a very strong-willed child, obstinate, but is doing ok. His Mom spoiled him to death! Literally. He just turned 13 in January.
    He's with his dad close by, so we do see them a little, everyone working hard it's not easy to visit a lot.
    We have to appreciate every single day, don't we, even some BAD days, we should still say Thank You Lord for this day.
  8. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA

    I'm so sorry for your loss!! How traumatic to lose someone you love so quickly! God Bless you and your family!

    It seems to hurt so deeply when we lose someone so unexpectedly. Maybe its just because we don't have time to prepare for it. It hurts just as deeply to see loved ones wasting away in pain.

    I'm glad you were able to celebrate her life even after she passed. It seems to bring a sense of closure, and maybe even a little peace to those of us left behind.

    Thank you for sharing your story, Kate. I'll bet she's up there smiling down on you!
  9. beecee

    beecee Super Member ECF Veteran

    Thanks for the sub-forum and I'm very proud of those who are survivors. It takes a lot of strength to get through it.

    My history is a long one with cancer but not myself personally.

    negative things...miss them all dearly:
    My father lost his battle to lung cancer in 2002. I miss him dearly, he was a sweet, caring and loving father.

    My grandmothers on both side both had been devastated by lung cancer with one and the other lived in Panama so by the time she was able to go to the Dr it was too late as it had spread to every organ. She was a great woman and taken far before her time, of course.
    I have also had many aunts and uncles pass from cancer as well.

    Now for the positive
    My mother has non-Hodgkins lymphoma which she is expected to do well with treatment. They say she can live another 20 years as long as she keeps on it. She is my hero

    A girlfriend of mine has just battled and is a survivor of breast cancer. She is my hero as well. Being in your 30's and dealing with cancer is it is at any age.

    I really never look forward to going to the doctor and I find myself constantly worried about cancer since a lot of my family has it or has passed away from it. I recently had a scare but it turned out to be nothing, thank God.

    I appreciate all your stories and have you all in my thoughts.

    Be well.

  10. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA

    I'm very sorry for your loss. You've done a remarkable feat in finding the positive in such painful experiences. Thank you so much for sharing.
  11. Nighthawk

    Nighthawk Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 4, 2010
    Southeast Texas
    I have not had cancer myself, but every single person from my father's side of the family has. and most have died from it. First it was all my aunts and uncles, now it's starting to eat my cousins as well.
    My Granny on my mothers' side had breast and colon cancer, but she was over 80 before she got them.
    There is also a lot of heart problems on both sides, which I have developed early. As crazy as it may sound, I hope my heart gets me before the cancer does.
    I admire you all for your courage and strength.
  12. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA
  13. Nighthawk

    Nighthawk Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 4, 2010
    Southeast Texas
    thank you so much! Our family is also viligent about getting early testing and screening done. the cancers just go so fast, starts as one little spot that they take out and treat, then it's like a wildfire and too late to cure. I started having heart problems with my first child, but it didnt get caught because I was only 20 at the time. After my 5th child, I had a lot of complications, emergency hysterectomy ect... and I just couldn't seem to get over it. I thought I was tired and had pneumonia. so I went to my excellent dr and she checked me out. turned out I had conjestive heart failure, enlarged heart and weak heart muscle. She put me on lasix and I lost 20 pounds of fluid in one week. Then I could breathe again! I had to quit my nursing job because it's very physical, so I lost my health insurance too. Now I can't afford to go to the dr, so I can't get treated, so I can't work.... catch 22. I'm doing ok most days. I pace myself and manage. :)
  14. trukinlady

    trukinlady Resting In Peace ECF Veteran

    Feb 24, 2010
    Missouri, USA
    I know how scary that can be. I'm glad your family takes precautions. I'm so sorry to hear about your heart! I know how frustrating it is not to be able to do the things you're used to doing! Have you considered applying for Disability? I had to swallow my pride, and apply for it myself after I was unable to work anymore. I really struggled with that decision. But then I realized all the money I had paid into Soc Sec over the years was what I was being given back. Medicare doesn't pay much, but it's much better than nothing. I had driven a semi with my husband for 12 years, and had to quit because I couldn't handle the physical demands of the job anymore.
    I hope things will get better for you, Nighthawk. I will keep you in my prayers!
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