Just wondering if anyone else has those down days. I finished treatment in November last year, 2010 and returned to work in Feb 2011.Today was just one of those days, where everything seemed to go wrong, or maybe I was just more vulnerable today.It is strange returning to the same things but I feel a shift in myself, a restlessness. Perhaps because I experienced something so confronting I feel like everything needs to change. I find myself assessing everything from friends to work to family. I suppose I just want things to go back to how they were. Does anyone else feel like that?
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Regular Contributor
Hi rachel, welcome to the world of the "new normal"! i am by no means bring flippant. I finished treatent in April 2008 and returned to work 4 weeks later - much too soon and there have been days when it is all too much. But they do become fewer and have more space between them. The assessing is an intereseting phenomenon and you may find that you find the trivial events in the lives of others, just that - trivial. I found that I just kept quiet and stepped back as a way of managing. I'm sure that others deal with it differently. We manage the situations very individually. I too experineced a a shift - wanting to tick off the items on my list incase I don't manage to achieve them. My problem was/is, is that many around me don't feel the same way. But their experinces have been different to mine. I think that, in answer to your question, there are many who feel the way that you do. Samex
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Contributor
hey there i knw how u feel.. my boyfriend got told he would only have a temp colostomy bag now they said its permanant.. it feels like we've been cheated and although im grateful for his life, it just seems so unfair.. 😞 i guess we learn to adapt and cope with this... its the new normal just sucks coz of what we've been thru!
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Hi Rachel, I finished my treatment for head and neck cancer 12 months ago and after a long recovery time am only now getting used to the new me.What I went through has changed me as a person and I feel differently about a LOT of stuff.Not having to get back into work quickly has meant I can access my situation and I feel like I am heading off into a whole new tangent.Relationships have changed too,people who have not been through what we 've been through don' t get what we get so that can affect how we relate now.But all in all I am now embracing these changes for I feel I have a far greater understanding of the preciousness of life and that to me is an amazing thing to have realized. Good luck with it all Rachel ,you will grow into the new you and like her and your new life so much more than before. Mandy
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Occasional Contributor
Hi Mandy,You are so right about feeling different about things. I also feel different about certain people. Things that would not normally have worried me seem to affect me differently. I also see how fragile and precious life is and hope I can get to a place where I don't worry as much about my future. Maybe this will take time and patience, things I have to learn about. I am looking forward to growing into my new life. Thanks, Rachel
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Occasional Contributor
Thanks Samex,I worry about my future and I almost feel an urgency to do the things I want in life It is good to be back at work. I used to work 4 days a week and at the moment I am working 3 days a week. I lost my hair after the chemo and stem cell transplant and returned to work with a wig. Just last week i went to work with my very short new hairstyle. The new me is new in every respect. When I look in the mirror I see a very different person. I too have become a lot quieter almost not wanting to draw attention to myself, I don't know if this is good or bad. I think after this experience we become more introspective and begin to see things very differently to other people. Rachel
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True Rachel about being more introspective.I am finding I need more time by myself to process stuff.I get anxious about dealing with things that may lead to a confrontation of sorts ie issues with my teenage son before the fact, more than I normally would have.My tolerance level to stress of all discriptions is very small so am finding that spending more time alone helps as I too am more introspective than before but then I am dealing with things from a place of more thoughtfulness. Take care Mandy
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Occasional Contributor
Hi Mandy,I know what you mean about teenage sons. I think they find our situation very confronting and they are probably very anxious about their mum's being sick. I try to pass the buck to my husband as I get very stressed with the all the issues. It is almost too much too handle. Whereas I have found my daughter to be quite mature and able to handle the situation better. Maybe being on our own helps us to think things thru and then we can slowly heal.
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Hey Mandy, hope things are travelling Ok for you, it is hard sometimes to stay focussed as we try to get used to the new us ( i use the we as i am also a Head and necker ) I tend to want my own space more these days and can get a bit grumpy if i don't get it..all in the adjustment process with having to change the food we eat and the constant drinking of litres of water with the dry mouth,lol. my diet mostly consists of pureed stuff but i am stubborn and tackle bread with the crust on and things like that....yes u guessed it i have not teeth to put back in as yet...haha...my humour hasen't changed since the OP and i am 4 mths out of radiation and fairing OK. well Mandy stay positive and good luck on your journey. Dave
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Super Contributor
My op was last April and radiation lastJune and July Both changed me and I can't bring myself to return to work .I only did relief teaching .If I had still been permanent I think I could have returned but don't think I would like to explain my altered appearance to different people all the time.So my life has further changed, I also agree with others thst things take on a different level of importance now. Faced with our immortality our priorities change even if we try yo live normally and get on with life.
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Occasional Contributor
Hi I was very nervous about returning to work as I did not tell anyone, apart from close work associates, that I was going for cancer treatment.I started only in Feb this year with a wig, some said my hair looked nice,a bit different then I quickly changed the conversation. Just a couple of weeks ago I went in with my new very short hairstyle, no wig. Everyone commented again, and I was really nervous about their reactions. Once again I said I felt like a change and changed the subject. Nobody asked me any questions about my changing hairstyles, and I believe they would have suspected cancer, but they all respected my privacy. Only one person said,it has grown back really well. Now nobody mentions it anymore and it is the new me. I am still the same person but with a very different hairstyle.
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Super Contributor
My face is altered, one eye one side of nose ,loss of half an eyebrow and some eyelashes and bruises and redness to parts of face. All this is permanent. Sometimes people ask about my eye as it's so obviously not right.Many just wonder, as you found and they do not say anything.I'm talking about people I've just met.I tell them a short,longer or very short version depending on the situation. I know I don't have to tell anything.They usually expect me to tell about my sore eye ,not expecting a cancer story. I wish I didn't have a cancer to tell. I don't think I appreciated what I had till it was gone. I suppose that is true or most people who get a life- changing condition.
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