Feel unable to move forward.

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I was diagnosed with grade 1 endometrial cancer in October and had a total hysterectomy in December. Everything went amazingly well and I am so lucky and grateful that I did not need any more treatment. I returned to work and felt like life should return to normal however I just feel low and anxious a lot of the time. I’ve only discussed this with my husband and a couple of close friends as I feel guilty for feeling like this. I am so lucky that my cancer was removed with surgery alone. I work as a nurse and see so many people who are having a much more challenging time than I am so I think I should just try and get on with it. But I seem to be unable to move forward. I would be grateful for any advice x

  • Hi  and welcome to this corner of the community. It is indeed challenging to get back to some sort of normality following treatment and to be able to move on.

    You are ‘only’ about 5 months out from treatment so you are still in the recovery period. When I say recovery I am thinking about trusting you body, getting your head sorted out as to what you have been through and trying to understand how to move forward.

    Talking with your family and friends can help........ but at times you need to look outside that group of people.

    What steps have you take to move this forward?….. I enrolled in a weekly post cancer focused circuits class at my local Maggie's Centre and that was the turning point for me.

    You may find it helpful to make a cuppa and have a look at this great paper After Treatment Finishes - Then What? by Dr Peter Harvey as it highlights the post treatment milestones.

    Get back to me once you have read the paper with your thoughts about it.

    Mike (Thehighlander)

    It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

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  • Thanks Mike. Reading the article makes a lot of things clearer to me. I have more of an idea now about how to move forward emotionally. In some ways it just feels better to know that the way I feel is normal. Thankyou so much for your response. 
    Best Wishes to you x

  • Yes the paper is a great tool. If you have looked through some of the other posts in this group you may well have seen me talk about the Invisible Ruck-Sack.

    I often talk about the concept that when we first get our cancer diagnosis we all get an invisible ruck-sack put on our backs.

    We then walk through our journey including our treatments, clinics, blood tests, scans, side effects……. and unknowingly, we continually throw stuff into the ruck-sack…… and the stuff builds up. It’s only when we finished our treatment (rang the bell) and look to try and ‘live’ life we realise that it’s not that straight forward.

    This is due to the weight of the ‘stuff’ we have collected in the ruck-sack pulling us down…. stuff like pent-up anxiety and stress, the ‘what if’s’, the difficulty in seeing a way forward with life, the disappointments around how some of our family and friends supported us, the silly things people said during and after treatment….. the list goes on.

    There comes a time when we hit ‘the wall’ and this is the point when this ruck-sack needs to be taken off out backs and over time cleaned out. It’s not an instant fix but a process…. but the healing process can only start when we are willing to do it and to achieve this we often need help so these are some links that you may want to follow up and see where you can find this help.

    One thing I did have to deal with was survivors guilt as I lost some very good friends to different cancers over my years and "why did I survive and they did not".......... but I got some great help through our local Maggie's Centre especially their Where Now? Course and One on One support.

    Mike (Thehighlander)

    It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

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  • Think the rucksack analogy is great and makes a lot of sense to me. Going to spend some time focusing on what’s been put in my rucksack and then see what support I need from that point. Thankyou so much for your reply x

  • Thanks Mike 

    Im awake early doors in a hotel and just picked this up. Brilliant analogy and just how I feel. 

    I remember someone one in my Bowel group saying 

    “Well you don’t have to leap out of bed every morning shouting I’m lucky to be alive” 

    That still makes me smile. I’m not sure why but at the time it struck a chord 

    Have a good day 


  • Hi Anne  sometimes it only takes some simple mental pictures to help us start unraveling the crazy mess our brain can get into over the cancer journey

    Mike (Thehighlander)

    It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

    Community Champion Badge