Member
Posts: 73
Registered: ‎22-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hello ladies,

Jem, thank you. We are still on holiday, another couple of days left. The weather has been very warm for late September so we have been lucky. It’s helped me to forget a little and it was my 60th birthday treat too. 

However I'm still popping into the forum to see how everyone is.

Jude I hope you are enjoying your week of feeling normal and have managed to so some things to make you happy. Enjoy the moment.

Lisa, you have been through a really tough time and I think you shouldn’t feel guilty at all about work. You are more important than anything and you’ve still got a bit of a journey ahead of you.

I am in awe of you all, ladies! Today you make me feel like the fraud, after what you have all been through.

I do feel as though I am on the mend now, although in just over a month I will be facing my first mammogram since February and it’s scary. Trying not to think about it.

In the meantime I’m heading out for a walk along the beach and get some exercise.

Tale care of yourselves and I’m thinking of you all.

lots of love from the south of France 😎🏖

Rosie xxx

Member
Posts: 262
Registered: ‎18-04-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Jude you sound like you are doing well on this cycle 😊when does T start? I know you are prepared with finger nails- keep them moisturised, especially at the bottom. So far I’ve kept all mine😊. I’m now 3 weeks post chemo- it felt good yesterday not starting another cycle. I started radiotherapy on Monday - 15 sessions in all. It’s ok, different to chemo. But a Lisa Marie said tears must come at some point- mine arrived on Monday😢quite unexpected - just kept crying. Think there will be more. I just feel like I got off one horrid rollercoaster to move on to a different one.
My hair is starting to come back - I was blond but now grey/white/blond/darker bits. I’ve always had fine hair but what is coming through is like fine baby hair- just hoping it won’t be curly too. Eyebrows & eyelashes - T was not good for them. Eyebrow pencil and waterproof eyeliner come everywhere with me.
Lisa Marie how’ve you started back at work yet? If so hope going well. Agree with you re putting on your face, feeling like a fraud but albeit a happier one that only people who I’ve chosen to tell will ever know . So many people have commented on my new shorter hairstyle- even asking who cut it!! Thankfully I don’t need to lie as went to a salon and had it trimmed!!
Rosie Posie hope you had a great time in the south of France
Xx
Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Lisa

It’s good to talk!
When did your chemo finish? I’m curious as to how long it takes for your hair to start growing back. I’ve had a bob of varying lengths for the last 10 years or so but did have it shorter before & always quite liked it - I’m already wondering how you get it into a style as it starts to grow & I’m only halfway through chemo!
Sorry - a wle is a wide local excision (back in the day it was called a lumpectomy), I was quite lucky in that due to the position of my tumours they used the sane incision to get the tumours & the sentinel lymph node so I only have 1 scar
I started a blog as well to try & use as therapy as well as updating everyone without having to talk to them all separately 😂
I like reading other blogs - can you send me a link to yours? Or us it just for your personal musings?

I do feel for you if you are scared, it sometimes feels like you just have to put one step forward at a time & manage the hours/days rather than looking too far forward
Regarding the tablets for ten years- people can be very thoughtless but I don’t think it’s deliberate I think it’s more because they don’t really know what to say but think they have to say something.
I like to think that when I’ve got through the rest of the chemo, the rads, herceptin & bisphosphonates that I will be a better more rounded person

Take care

Jude x
Member
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎21-03-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jude, fatique, yep that is my worse nightmare, like you when I go out I like to make the most, I dont wear my wig or a scarf anymore, my hair as started to come back, very very short, like an army buzz cut but am so fortunate it actually suits me, I may go as far as saying a neighbour says it looks sexy, but like you, if he saw me in the house, no lippy on and in my pjamas as so tired cant get out of them he may feel differently. Haha. Im very tired and when someone says I look great Im so pleased but think if you only knew how I felt, because I dont tell them, not even family. I dont say well I feel like,S*#’, I’m scared, I’m exhausted, I find it hard to look at my chest and scars, am desparate to have a good cry and get these tears out but they never come. Oh well, will have to keep going round as a fraud! What has helped though is throughout all this since being diagnosed 1st March, the chemo, surgery, and what is to come my radio, herceptin amd tablets etc I have been writing. Ive found it has helped as all my real feelings are down on paper. All kind of fruits I’ve called it seeing as my boobs changed shape so much during treatment and when had padding on them looked like melons haha. Jude you havent ONLY had a wle (I will confess don't know what that means) no matter what treatment any of us has had we have all got the same hopes, fears etc am sure. Hoping to go back to work in couple weeks, am so fortunate to have great employers who will let me take it easy and the hours I can manage. On with the lippy, no mascara yet as eyelashes not grown back but strangly my eyebrows have! Lovely to chat with you albeit on the forum. Take care. X. Oh yeh someone said to me when I told them what lies ahead, oh tablets for ten years, thats alright you can manage them. I could have throttled them!! 

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Lisa

Crikey you’ve had a tough time of it & you’ve still got radiotherapy, herceptin & a possible reconstruction to come! I don’t have experience of a mx but try not to be rushed into your decision as you may feel different in a few months

I find it a bit irritating now when people (who’ve not been through it) tell me how well I look when I’ve made an effort, wig on & makeup. If they saw me at home nauseous, shaky, bald & scarred (I only had a wle rather than mx) they might think differently. Not that I want to look rough when I’m out but it does all support the ‘fraud’ element. I still feel like I’m in a parallel universe at times & I’m watching it happen to me.

Saying that I’m totally with you - life is for living so I’m trying to still do the things I enjoy without totally knackering myself - this fatigue malarky is tiring!! 😂

Take care

Jude x

Member
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎21-03-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Just come across this thread, using this site as need advice regarding reconstruction. I know how you all felt about feeling like a fraud. Apart from an itchy boob there I was healthy and happily working with no aches and pains or cares in the world. Now I am bald and boobless!! Six months of chemo, double mastectomy, 10/10 cancerous lymph nodes removed, internal bleeding emergency surgery and blood transfusion etc etc... but I look so well! Everyone who sees me tells me so, its like I cant be poorly. It has wiped me out and I do feel guilty about work, only doing a few hours three days a week (at the moment not working as recovering from mastectomy). Got radiotherapy to come, a years supply of Herceptin in local chemo unit and then ten years of tablets.... along with a reconstruction if I choose to go ahead. Like a lot of ladies, Ive not been able to cry just got on with battling it, besides my husband has cried buckets for me! Ive had to laugh though, before the hospital got hold of me I was a healthy thing now am so different. We just dont know whats around the corner do we. Live each day to the fullest thats what I say. Hugs to all you out there. X

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Rosie

Thank you - that’s very kind of you

Hope you have a lovely holiday, I bet it’s still warm in the south of France - enjoy every minute

I’m just starting to feel normal so am looking forward to the next week or so before going onto T chemo & herceptin

Have a lovely weekend everyone

Jude x
Member
Posts: 73
Registered: ‎22-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Morning Ladies

 

Just popped into say hello - we are on holiday in the south of France at the moment but I wanted to see how you all were.

Jude, I’m so glad you had a great day at the races and you looked absolutely gorgeous in the photo! Beautiful lady in your stunning outfit. I can imagine that you felt tired afterwards and hope that you had a relaxing weekend to make up for it.

 

Jem, well done you for all this walking! It is very therapeutic and good for you physically too. I think you’ll find it gets easier. I realise now that I can’t walk quite a long way without feeling tired now - the old body is getting there!!! You hang on in there and continue to improve. 

 

Glad your rads are finished Yorkshire Tyke, Elaine. Hope you’re feeling well too.

Take care all of you and I’m sending love and hugs from France.

Love Rosie xxx

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Life revolving** around appointments 😂😂
Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Elaine

Thanks for the additional info on the rads process - I’ve got an appointment on Wednesday with a radiotherapy consultant from St James but I’m seeing her at Bradford Royal Infirmary so it’s possibly just to check the scar area & to discuss timescales. I’ve had a cardiac rest test today at BRI & am seeing the oncologist next week so am starting to feel like a proper patient! Life receiving around appointments!
Hope your skin gets back to normal ASAP & you can start to relax & enjoy life to the full

Go swim with those turtles 🐢

Take care

Jude x


Member
Posts: 22
Registered: ‎06-07-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jude,

 

I'm so happy you had such a fun day out, and the mental image of you sat in full war paint and no wig did make me giggle!

 

To be honest it felt like an anti climax when I finished the rads. My life is basically back to normal now. Although I applied for an got a new job in the midst of all the chaos!

 

The redness and itchy skin peeked on Friday and has now started to settle down, whilst my sun tanned armpit looks to be honest bruised but is in no way painful!

 

You will have an appointment with the nurse to check your skin on the day of your last appointment (and if you have any problems just tell them and the will refer you to the out patients ward if necessary - that how I got to the bottom of my infection) and another one 6 weeks later. Mine is with my breast cancer nurse back in Harrogate.

 

I suspect that, that is when I will find out how often I have to go to clinic for a check-up. I know the mammogram will be annual but I'm not so sure about the medication reviews.

 

I hope you had a restful weekend

 

Elaine

 

 

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jem

Well done on the walking, I’ve been trying to walk a little everyday, last weekend before chemo I got up to 5.5km so am trying to build myself up. My plan is to do couch to 5k running by end of next March!! I love a plan!
Sounds like you have a busy weekend - have a great time, try not to overdo it
I’m having a settee day today

Take cate

Jude x
Member
Posts: 262
Registered: ‎18-04-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jude
So pleased you had a great day- well done you 😊
You made me smile with you say there bald, make up on 😆
I too have dark blue nails - docetaxel can effect your nails. My fingers hurt but nails all intact so far. Had a discussion with my nurse about how long to keep the dark nail varnish on - we decided about 6 weeks post- no scientific reason but if nails lifted would be gutted. So I’m now deciding which colour next? I will need to keep covered as ridges across showing surgery and each chemo cycle!!!
I hope you can rest over the weekend.
I walked just over 6km today😊 amazing when Wednesday 500 m and my legs aches ! Busy weekend here- off to help parents in the morning and meeting friends in the New Forest for walk & Bbq, Sunday equally busy- lunch with friends and afternoon out. Just hoping no one has an infection.
Rest now xx
Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jem

Thank you very much - very kind of you - yes I’m in the blue hat, have had an absolutely lovely day but now pooped!
Apparently the T chemo which I have next time can effect your nails but dark polish (mine is shellac) is supposed to help against them getting brittle & damaged? And as they are not growing anymore they should last a while
To give you a laugh I’m now sat at home in my dressing gown, bald, still with my makeup on & I look like Terence Stamp in Priscilla Queen of the Desert!!

Hope you are ok?

Take care

Jude x

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Elaine

Good to hear you are doing ok
I do find the blogs to be quite cathartic so if nothing else it’s keeping my head together!
I did get to the races & had a fab day but am absolutely pooped now - will have to have a very quiet day tomorrow!

Thanks for all the info re the radiotherapy- I’ll bear in mind the extra time needed to get parked & thanks for the directions & info that will be really helpful
Well done on getting through your rads with no major discomfit - how are you feeling now it is complete? Or do you have some further follow up appointments. Hopefully you can gradually get your life back together

Take care

Jude x
Member
Posts: 262
Registered: ‎18-04-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Jude you made it 🎉😊😊🎉 you look amazing beautiful lady- even matching nail varnish (that is I think you are the one in blue hat?!)
Hope you have a fab time xx
Member
Posts: 22
Registered: ‎06-07-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Morning Ladies,

 

Jude I hope you feel a bit better today and make it to the races! I've been reading your blogs and they've made me laugh and shed a tear. I read the blog about the wig fitting whilst at the hair dressers. If I'd gone down the chemo route that would have been the day of the chop but instead it was the normal application of dye to hide the white roots! Besides I doubt very much that they make wigs to fit my natural hair style which is less chic bob and more long haired, slightly dishevelled poodle!

 

My radiotheraphy completed last Thursday. It was both a relief and an anti-climax. So far my skin has gone a bit red (you would have to be up close and personal to see it) and feels mildly itchy. I'm still drinking loads of water (about 2 litres per day) and applying moisturiser (Avene - RosePosie recommended and Aveeno - which is on offer in Waitrose). I had a bit of a rough day on Sunday (that could have been the red wine!) but otherwise I've felt fine and the rest of my skin looks much better thanks to all the water!

 

My appointments pretty much ran to time but I'd recommend that you give yourself some time to find a slot in the hospital multi-story. You will find one, it's just very busy with cars coming and going so you often have to wait to go up to the next floor or for someone to park. You don't have to pay and you exit via Floor A0. Just walk across to the main entrance then on to the "Green Lifts" and down to -A2. The opposite set of doors to the one you entered through will open and the toilets are on the right and reception to check in for your appointment on the left. When you go round to the waiting area to the machine you've been allocated there are more toilets. If you drink the amount of water I did you'll need them!

 

Radiotheraphy itself is just like having an xray. The majority of the time is spent lining you up with the marks to make sure they get the best coverage they can. My skin felt a bit warm afterwards but I was never in any pain.

 

Once again enjoy the races Jude!

 

Elaine

 

 

Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Rosie

Feel loads better today just background nausea rather than full blown! Ufortunately the steroids had me fully awake at 4am but dud have 2 walks today -so think the races will be a goer!

If you get chance have a listen to the older podcasts- well worth a listen

Have a good week

Lots of love

Judy


Member
Posts: 73
Registered: ‎22-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud

Hi Jude

I hope by now you are feeling a bit better and not so nauseous and that you slept ok too.

Hope you’re taking it easy again today - feet up , good book.

Just read your blog - I loved it, and to think you were thinking of not writing this time!!

I’m so pleased you are making plans to go to the races soon, I’m sure your lovely friends will look after you!

Sounds like you’re going to be prepared with the meds too.😉 You’ll have a great time.

Everything you said about Rachael Bland rang true!  I listened to the podcast yesterday ‘About our Rachael’ and it was very sad but also, I felt uplifted by it, talking about the big c in such an informative but realistic way. It’s gotta be good!!!

Keep up the good work.

Sending hugs to you.

Lots ove love 

Rosie xxx

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Member
Posts: 236
Registered: ‎23-06-2018

Re: Feel like a fraud