Monday, August 27, 2012
I know my brother Tom is anxious to see my new hair do....I want Tom and Clyde to be able to recognize me at the airport on Thursday. My hair is growing, I am not sure what color it is. My red hair is gone, I know it cannot possible be gray. At least it is growing some of it is dark !
Friday, August 24, 2012
I copied this from another persons blog. She was having a very hard time with tamoxifen. Please read below, she is very funny:)
Thank you Beth.
Blogging my life with breast cancer, from suspicion to diagnosis to treatment. Now livin' the Stage IV Lifestyle! Terminal Cancer can be funny. Just not for very long.
Cancer Patients Laugh Too
Thursday, June 3, 2010In a previous post, I shared with you that I was experiencing a little tamoxifen rage, euphemistically called "mood swings" by my oncologist.
Let's describe some of the other side effects that have popped up since then, shall we?
Along with the aforementioned tamox-rage, I also seem to be experiencing the inability to, shall we say, STFU. I don't know what's happened, but I've turned into that little old lady who says whatever the hell is on her mind without regard to how anybody else is going to take it. My thoughts come straight out of my mouth, without any stoppage. That might be cute, even admirable, when you are 95 and non-threatening in every other way. Hearing granny say, "Hey you fucking kids, get off my lawn" is cute.
Hearing your school secretary say it? Not so much.
Speaking of a little old lady, a few months ago I was a vibrant middle-aged woman who looked younger than her age. Now, I'm a hag. Literally. The skin is starting to hang off my bones. My arms look like they are melting. The tamoxifen is sucking me dry, and I've even gotten an (ahem) lady infection.
I've aged ten years in two months and am afraid to see what will happen in another two. I used to look at old-fashioned, 50's era photos of women my age and feel pity. They dressed like old ladies, they looked like old ladies. You know that your grandma, when she was my age, was wearing sensible shoes and a baggy housedress and baking cookies. Not me. I was glad to live in this age of Kim Catrell where I could still wear 3 inch rise jeans and five inch heels and eat salads with my girls. I now can't wear heels (more on that later) and I am seriously considering a pair of elastic waist jeans.
The tamoxofin may be sucking me dry, but it's also making me sweat. The hot flashes are not really flashes of heat; what a misnomer that phrase is! I just don't feel hot - instead, my brain seems to have a complete inability to regulate my body temperature. One second I'm freezing to death (and it's 80 degrees outside) and the next second I am boiling and sweating. I've never been a sweater so it's very disconcerting to find sweat running down my plastic cleavage (and my shins, and my forearms). All day long, every 15 minutes, I switch from boiling to freezing. One second I'm huddled in a blanket and the next second I'm ripping off my shirt. (Oh, THAT'S why it's called flashes!) It's like season five on Lost, where you flash from year to year uncontrollably. Only, without Josh Holloway.
Because of tamoxifen, my poor brain won't regulate my mouth or my temperature.
Why can't I wear heels, you ask? You know how I love them. Well, I ache. I ache all over. I ache from head to toe. My bones hurt. My hips hurt. Walking in heels makes my hip bones feel like they are rubbing up against each other. Even my ribs hurt.
The muscles around my bones hurt and my back really hurts. I have one spot in my back that is particularly painful, and that seems to be the part of the spine that holds you upright. So, sitting and standing - hurts. The pain is like those growing pains you had when you were a kid - you remember lying in bed and feeling that deep, horrible ache? And, your mom would put a towel in hot water to warm it up and wrap it around your legs? I have that everywhere, all day long.
I take a hot bath each morning to ease the pain and get my muscles loose enough to move. I am still on part-time hours at work precisely because it takes me so long to move in the morning. I fear for the day I have to leave the house at 6:30 a.m.
Getting up won't be a problem though, because I can't sleep. Who needs sleep anyway? Certainly, my cat is happy with my insomnia because she gets to be petted all night. I'm sometimes so tired I fall asleep after dinner but even then, I can't get a real nap in. I wake up in ten minutes like I had a night's worth of sleep and then, you guessed it, it's hard to get to sleep at bedtime. If I do sleep, it's in brief increments and I wake up throughout the night, typically when I try to rollover and all the sheets are stuck to me because I've sweated through them.
I can't shut up, regulate my body temperature, or sleep and I hurt all over. Thank you, Tamoxifen.
Tamoxifin is an anti-cancer drug given to pre-menopausal women. It is an estrogen blocker. My cancer "feeds" on estrogen and this medicine takes away the ability of any remaining cancer cells to grow. I am supposed to take it for five years.
I can tell you after two months, that I won't make it those five years. Something is going to have to change. Dr. B, you are warned.
Link to blog:
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Fighting cancer is like a giant game of Mother May I. There are times when you take a few steps forward and than a few steps back. This is so true. I have taken a giant leap forward. I am feeling good. I have been driving and I helped Peter in the yard today. The yard though it is small has been a challenge this year. It takes a lot of work. Peter has been repairing our stone walls in front of the house. He is strong and lugs the rocks and cement around with ease. We will be heading to the beach and enjoy life with our friends and family - It has been a long year. This will be a celebration for both of us. The cancer walk is moving behind us.
A good thing:) This is the deck garden. tomato plant is not doing well.
A good thing:) This is the deck garden. tomato plant is not doing well.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
After the reconstruction surgery. I had a reaction or injury to my mouth. This included pain, bruising, swelling, my taste buds and appetite. I think this happened because who ever was in charge of the items they put in your mouth was not very careful. Otherwise the surgery went well. Very little recovery time. When they took the expander s out my leg pain departed also :) A very good thing. My new breast/boobs look marvelous!
However, this is not a good thing - I have had to deal with depression, serious depression. It appears this is common after a battle with cancer. As you start your journey towards being a cancer survivor. One more thing the Dr's should discuss with their patients.
My attitude was - great this is all behind me - everything is awesome! However that did not happen, I had no energy, appetite, was not sleeping, hot flashes, lack of interest in anything - At first I attributed this to the aftermath of the last surgery and all the trauma my body has gone through. Plus the start of my oral medication.
"Tamoxifen". Depression kind of creeps up on you. I went from I can do this to I do not want to do this. After a few weeks I called my family Dr. a nice anti depressant is helping. I am a strong woman and look forward to a long and happy life.
What is tamoxifen? I hope you never have to take this type of drug. I will be on this for 5 years :(
Tamoxifen blocks the actions of estrogen, a female hormone. Certain types of breast cancer require estrogen to grow.
Tamoxifen is used to treat some types of breast cancer in men and women. Tamoxifen is also used to lower a woman's chance of developing breast cancer if she has a high risk (such as a family history of breast cancer).
side effects may include:
- hot flashes;
- bone pain, joint pain, or tumor pain;
- swelling in your hands or feet;
- vaginal itching or dryness;
- loss of appetite
- headache, dizziness, depression; or
Peter has retired and we are hanging out together, we are heading to Panama Beach , Florida. We will be celebrating my recovery with our best friends and my brother Tom and bother in law Clyde. What could be better than partying at the beach.
MY hair is growing!
A personalized approach is best as men consider the benefits and risks of PSA screening for prostate cancer.
expression profiling for breast cancer: What is it?
Gene expression profiling is a treatment-planning tool designed to help predict whether early-stage breast cancer will return after initial treatment.