I'm 47, live in Sydney, studying and working part time and was recently diagnosed with ICD breast cancer in my right breast and DCIS in my left in September 09. Had a double masectomy on 15 October and started chemo last week with AC followed by Taxol and Herception and tamoxifen for 2 to 5 years after that. All these terms I knew nothing about a little over 2 months ago!!!
Anyhow have for the first time had a very short hair cut and source a wig for when it falls out in the next few weeks.
Of course a big shock, even though we know it happens to many people we all think only other people. But almost all of my friends and partner's family have been great, so has been the manager and most staff at work and trying to keep positive.
Being half way through a uni term with the diagnosis with some arrangments I've been able to complete the term and confident passed my exams (but at lower marks a pass is all I'm aiming for) and now concentrating fully on fighting this.
how is things going? No doubt your hair would have fallen out by now. I had almost waist length hair when I was diagnosed and I cried when the haem told me I would lose it. But once I told the nurse to shave it, that was it, it was one less thing to worry about. I was lucky at the time and bandanas were all the craze. I had a wig, but it was ill fitting and unflattering and I was scared it would fall off. I know a lady who is having treatment for breast cancer at the moment and she just goes bald everywhere and it doesn't seem to bother her. I felt unattractive without hair. It really is a whack to your feminity. Then my hair came back curly and I hated it. It depressed me and I would actually have dreams of having my old long straight hair back.
You are doing well with juggling chemo and doing uni and working. Wow, people like you are an inspiration.
Thanks for the good wishes. Have finished the AC chemo which was manageable with the emend, demaxasothone and pramin and have just started the first taxol (of 12 X weekly sessions) which I'm feeling tired. I have lost all my hair but have a couple of wigs now.
Yeah the hair loss is hard and I do wonder how it will grow back. Mine was about half way down my back. But I'll keep it short when it does grow back as I did get lots of compliments on the short haircut. Hopefully your hair has settled down now, it looks very nice in your photograph!!!
Have finished my uni, passed the term with good marks and now just concentrating on working part time whilst getting through the rest of the treatment.
Take care Deejay
Hi Deejay I'm a bit behind the times; I was looking for something and I saw your gorgeous cat so naturally I had to find out who (it) belonged to. Male or female (it)is beautiful. As you will see my little girl is on here too. If you have read anything about me or read any of my posts -Tulip features prominently at times - having no kids all of my pets have been my kids over the years- why not -they don't answer back but they can be as naughty as kids!
Congratulations on passing your exams - not bad when you are going through all that treatment.
About hair aaaaagh yes I've lost mine too - all I have left is what a 'lovely' friend calls bum fluff - charming!!
Fortunately my friends know I have a good sense of humor so I am teased relentlessly - I even get asked if I wash my hair - how rude!
Anyway when my hair started to fall out I was quite upset then it went beserk - now I've shed the tears and felt sorry for myself and
even though I am very self-conscious in my scarves and stupid wigs and no eyebrows or eyelashes - I keep the hope alive that if the chemo is doing horrible things to my appearance it surely must be doing horrendous things to my cancers. Hope to hear from you about your cat and anything else you feel like talking about byee meeow(sorry it has to be done)!!
Hi Cats, love the picture of your cat as well. A real tabby and very cuddly looking. My cat is called Millie and is a female, around 10 years old, got her from the pound just before she turned 6 and she is very affectionate and very eccentric. She has a whole lot of varying miaows from greetings (she always miaows a greeting when we come into the room), purry happy miaows to loud indignant ones usually when one finally has to push her off our laps to get up.
I have no kids as well so Millie is like our child.
My hair is slowly starting to grow back inspite of 2 weeks left of taxol chemo to go (less strong but weekly), it's fluff as well but pretty much spread over but to my horror is looking grey and white so I will be semi permanently dying it soon especially as a guy I worked with had his hair cut shorter than what mine is so I want to show him and compare hair lengths. But yes it is hard when it falls out even when it starts to. I agree if it's doing that to our hair and appearance may it be permanently killing the cancer cells.
When do you finish chemo? Do you have radiotherapy? I'm starting that 3 weeks after chemo finishes (nice to have a little break)
Anyhow cheers for now and take care Deejjay
Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.