Not sure I can do it alone

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Not sure I can do it alone

Hi. My name is Steve. I'm 58 years of age, and I was first diagnosed with Kidney Cancer in 2008. I had a Right Radical Nephrectomy very shortly after the diagnosis and I was told by my specialist that he was confident he'd left no trace of it behind. In 2013, routine follow-up scans showed another tumour in my left kidney, and I had a partial (golf ball sized) left nephrectomy. In September last year, scans showed several tumours in each Lung and one in my Pancreas. The biopsy showed them to be all related to the original RCC. Apparently Chemo and Radiation have little to no impact on renal cancer, so I'm being treated with a drug called Pazopanib (Votrient.)

I live alone in Littlehampton, SA, with my recently fostered four legged little friend Digby. I've been separated for around 8 years now and I'm feeling very alone in all this. Being a shy teen, I married the only girl who ever showed any interest in me, but as the years went by, I became incresingly tired of her controlling ways and eventually gathered up the courage to leave her in the hope I'd find a better life somewhere out there. I thought I'd find that happy person that I once was. I was so very, very wrong. Unfortunately, my ex, the tough, unshakeable and stubborn type that she is, ruined me financially through the property settlement (bye bye bucket list! lol) and poisoned any friendships that I had before the marriage break-up. I have four wonderful boys, and though I'm so very proud of each and every one of them, they have become incresingly distant over the past 8 years. I was diagnosed with Depression about 4 years ago and have been struggling ever since. The therapy and medication has helped keep me going, but therapy alone can't solve all my problems. It can't cure stage 4 cancer or win me cross lotto Smiley Frustrated 

I'm told Votrient will never cure me, but it can buy me time. I've had to deal with some nasty side-effects, but I had my first scans about six weeks ago and the tumours in my lungs have shown some shrinkage and the one in my pancreas doesn't appear to have grown. Great news! ... If only there was a cure for lonliness Smiley Sad

So if there's someone out there in a similar situation, it'd be great to hear from you. Everybody needs a friend. Especially through the tough times.

Regards, Steve

4 REPLIES
Cancer Council NSW

Re: Not sure I can do it alone

Hi Steve,

 

I hope you're doing well today!

 

I just wanted to check in with you and see how you're doing?

 

 

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New Contributor

Re: Not sure I can do it alone

Hi Kate

I'm doing ok thanks. I had a rough week as far as the side-effects go, but I've been improving these past few days. I've been busy today trying to sort through my spare (junk) room. I intend to sell the house and move into a small rental. I really don't need the added stress of a mortgage and the upkeep here is a bit too much to handle. My second oldest is bringing ythe Grandkids up for a visit on Saturday. Really looking forward to seeing them all :-) 

Regards, Steve

 

 

 

Occasional Contributor

Re: Not sure I can do it alone

Hi Steve,

 

I'm Jess. Sorry to hear how difficult things have been for you. I'm a cancer survivor (had endometrial cancer 18 months ago). I'm in remission now, but since December 2017 I have been rocked by the news of cancer again as my husband Tony (62 yrs old now) was diagnosed with stage T3b kidney cancer. He underwent a radical nephrectomy in March 2018 however once the surgeons opened him up the cancer was already considered stage 4 and so the operation was abandoned and kidney with the tumour in it was left inside him. Unfortunately there are no treatment options so we are just waiting to see when he dies eventually, although we were told about 6 months life expectancy around 4 months ago. So who knows how long he has.

 

Been trying to reach out to someone who's in a similar situation, as it's hard for us both to understand how this disease is going to progress and what symptoms to look out for when he gets closer to death. Hope you are as well as you can be.

 

Jess  

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Not sure I can do it alone

If this is a bad suggestion, I apologise in advance - but even with a terminal prognosis, like the kidney cancer, I'd still wave my hand around at the hospital, deliberately and explicitly asking to be included in any clinical trial for which I was a viable candidate.

 

 

The science has been making very meaningful strides in that direction just in this past decade (and few years), and if nothing else, it may add years to your lifespan, and improve the quality of life as the end approaches.

 

I know a guy in his 60s with stage 4 disease throughout his body, a real shit scenario, pancreatic, lungs, liver, he was weeks/months from death, and he got on an immunology clinical trial (back when I was first diagnosed with my own cancer, 2 years ago), and he's still alive.

 

Still expected to shuffle off and meet the maker any old time, but the immunotherapy treatments he received apparently shrunk the major tumours by as much as 80%

 

Just offering it in case it's helpful to anybody, and with apologies in case it is not.

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