This seems to be the narrative in recent years. I'm far from new from the cancer community. I have just gotten to a point where I need to either unload to random stranger who aren't my family and friends, or I'll explode. It's that simple. I just need to put thoughts down in word, because that's how I work and need to just do something I hope will be cathartic enough to get me through the rest of this bullshit. This is a super long post so please skip if that's not your style - this is more for me than anything else. I'm 29 years old. I'm was recently appointed Head of Department for Social Science at a local high school. In years long ago I had 2 grandfathers, and one grandmother die of cancer. 12 Years ago I watched my close grandmother die of bowel cancer while living with my family (mum, dad, me). 10.5 Years ago I met the love of my life (we're getting married finally next April - he waited for 'all to be well' but it never seemed to be the right time) but then... 6 years ago I had stage 1 bladder cancer at 23 years old but then... 5 years ago my close aunt (my dad's twin) got diagnosed with stage IV melanoma that spread to the brain, and died within 8 months but then...[you get the picture, I won't repeat that] 4 years ago my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer - cue 2 months of panic. It was a misdiagnosis. He has a history of melanoma himself so we were all worried. 1 year ago dad had a number of assumed melanomas cut out. 8 months ago I finally got engaged and set a 2020 date. 4 months ago dad was diagnosed with Stave IV Merkel cell cancer. 2 months ago he started Avelumab and at a recent scan actually showed significant shrinking of tumors in his lymph nodes and spine. Last week dad was admitted to hospital because of a chest infection - not pneumonia - and they don't know what the hell it is. He is spritely, and acting 100% himself - no coughing up of gunk and his breathing test was at 92%...they just don't know what. If they can't find out soon they want to pause his treatment...that is working...on stage IV cancer. In the meantime I broke my ankle and find it hard to travel in to see him in hospital, and will be pretty immobile for at least another two weeks, and am struggling to maintain my calm at work while I stress about real life issues (my philosophy is that I work to live, not live to work - so please don't think here I'm putting my work above my family). The balance is hard keeping a strong face at work when I need to lead 35 other teachers under me. I need to be the problem solver, strong. Even in my family I need to be this person. Dad is getting a test tomorrow (local, down the throat into the lungs to see what is going on). No results for 3 days following. I know people have it far worse, I know that. I know my story is among thousands with families or even on their own, going through nightmares either with the disease or with their families. Cancer sucks. I just needed to share because if I don't, I'm going to go crazy. I just can't believe I can't shake my life of it - and I know so many are in this situation. It just...sucks. Sometimes these days I feel like I can't even breathe properly. If you read this long thank you. I needed this and thank you. I just needed a virtual ear - thank you. I'm going to implode or explode otherwise.
... View more
I had bladder cancer in June, then the same day I was cleared finally, my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer, only to have a biopsy to say it isn't.
Now at his 3 month check they aren't sure again, and need to do another biopsy from a different area.
On January 1st we got a call to say my dad's twin was going downhill from her multiple cancers. The tumours in her brain at this point now meant she couldn't even communicate with us anymore. She didn't know me, my dad, or her husband, or her kids.
She died on the 5th January 2014. Her funeral is next week.
These are just the highlights of my crappy 2013 transferring to 2014. My partner and I of 5 years have decided to try to be positive. He suggested we start being more positive, so we started writing down 3 things a day each that we appreciate or are thankful for.
Most of the time this is good, and reminds me that there are good things among senseless others, and it's up to us to find them. I just feel like I have been on this emotional rollercoaster for too long, and I want off. I want everything the way it used to be and know at the same time it can't be.
Once again just venting myself to a forum who gets it - even though my parents and my partner and my friends are supportive, I sometimes need to get it out to random people who are in similar situations to me.
... View more
Thanks Emily. I find the occasional blog on here with people that know what I'm going through but aren't personally affected by my family helps. I try to stay positive with my family - but I still need this outlet to let out the angst.
... View more
Thank you for your support - it's good to be able to vent the negativity. I know I need to be as positive as I can here with my family, but I still have this outlet to whine about the unfairness of it.
... View more
Two weeks ago, my aunty was diagnosed with...well I'm not even sure. The doctors say it developed from a melanoma she had removed years ago.
She has 4 tumours in her head, and masses throughout her body. They won't give her a time or anything, just that they won't operate.
This week, Tuesday, I was checked for any return of my bladder cancer - there was nothing there, which I am so thankful for.
Because of the rise in cancer rates in my family over the last few months, my dad decided to request a chest CT because he was having similar symptoms to his twin (my aunty) and wanted to make sure he was being paranoid.
My dad has lung cancer.
I cannot believe this. Now, again, my family is in meltdown all over again. My dad is the strength of this family, and it is killing me to see him so terrified. I researched all kind of cancers when I was diagnosed, and checking symptoms, and trying to convince myself I had nothing else wrong with me. I know the survival rates of lung cancer is the poorest in the world.
How the hell are we supposed to go through this? My life has just turned into an utter nightmare -again- overnight.
... View more
I'm 23 years old - last month I was diagnosed with TCC in the bladder and had it removed.
It was Stage 1 and my future treatment is thankfully only a cystocscopy (spelling might be off on that one!) in 3 months to check if it has returned, then at 9 months, then every 12 months.
The diagnosis was a huge shock for me, as we were just ultrasounding my abdomen as a precaution - my doctors believe I might be coeliac due to some bloating and pain. This came in the midst of house hunting with my boyfriend of 5 years, and car shopping. Everything going on in my life was all about growing up, moving out. That's all come to a halt.
Now, I feel frozen. I have had many areas of my body checked since out of paranoia, and have only the colonoscopy and endoscopy to go.
Even if they are both clear, as were my other tests, I can't stop my mind from thinking, "where else is it? where will it come back? Will I notice it? Will I catch it? How old will I be when I die?"
I know this is a ridiculous mindset to those suffering from more severe cancers than mine - I know mine is trivial compared to those struggling with cancers like lung, breast, prostate etc. but I can't stop my mind from wandering.
So I guess my question is...how do you deal with that? Once you're 'over it'...then how do you move on from it? How do you talk with your family, who to them it is all over and you're 100% healthy, that you can't get those thoughts out of your head?
I still don't know what has been causing the bloating (testing for coeliac in a few weeks) and I have this huge fear - what if I buy a house with my partner, then suddenly it returns and it's so bad that I leave him struggling with a mortgage on his own in a house all on his own?
Am I just paranoid?
... View more
by now you will have been to hospital and had that pesky tumor removed from your bladder. Hopefully it was benign - or at least very low grade.
I recently turned 23, and was in the process of house hunting and car shopping with my partner when I passed blood in my urine one weekend.
As a precaution, instead of simply just passing it off as a UTI, my doctor ordered an ultrasound because of some bloating I'd had (we think now I may be coeliac) and lucky they did.
I had a similar sized TCC removed from my bladder, Stage 1. Thankfully this means I don't need chemo, just another cysto-thingy in 3 months, then 9 months, then every 12 months.
I have a colonoscopy booked to check my bowel next week due to the bloating still occuring, but I am feeling positive.
Truly, I hope that yours has been dealt with, and you are no longer as terrified as I was when I was told it was cancer - especially at my age, I was shocked beyond belief.
Hope you are feeling better!
... View more
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.