Life after cancer

This group is for cancer survivors and people who have finished treatment. It is a space to discuss things like the physical and emotional after effects of cancer, returning to work, or trying to move on with your life.

When will I be me again??

Lisa5757
Posted by

2012 I was diagnosed with cervical cancer, radical hysterectomy and no treatment. I was kind of lucky I guess!

2016 I was diagnosed with breast cancer, 6 rounds of chemo, lumpectomy and a course of radiotherapy. 

Ive has all my identity taken from me and still today I hate what I see in the mirror. I suffer badly with severe depression and anxiety and don’t go out anymore, I can’t work and have no friends.

is it normal to feel like this? I’m in remission for both cancers so should be over the moon right? 

Thehighlander
Posted by

Hi Lisa  and welcome to the Online Community, although I am sorry to see you finding us and so sorry to hear that you are struggling with the post treatment journey.

A cancer diagnosis can indeed bring a lot of stress, confusion and questions on but talking with people who are on the same journey can help a lot.

Can I direct you to this link to our very supportive Breast cancer group as this will open up your concerns to a wider audience who know exactly what you are going through at the moment.

Just follow the link above, hitting ‘Join the Group’ tab just under the main group name, then go to the 'Start a Discussion' tab and set up your own Discussion and introduce yourself to the group - you could just copy an paste what you have in this first post. 

What you are dealing with unfortunately is the case for a lot of people. This great paper does a good job at unpacking the post treatment milestones.

You say that you done go out anymore, but could I recommend that you have a look to see if you have any Local Macmillan Support in your area or a Maggie’s Centre as these folks are amazing. Talking one on one with folks can help a lot - you could call our Macmillan Support Line Services on 0808 808 00 00 as you could make a cup of tea and have a chat to someone.

I may not have been any help but it would be worth following up the links I have given you ((hugs))

Mike - Thehighlander

It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

Cazza169
Posted by

Hi Lisa 

Welcome to the community. Your story of how your life has been affected by cancer is a familiar one to me. I feel much the same way.  I lost a job I spent years training for as I am no longer physically fit enough to do it. My relationships with friends have changed as I cannot be as socially active as I was. It is difficult to accept that the life I had planned is not the life I am going to have or want. You have been through a life changing experience and your feelings are completely normal.

I have found this forum to be a great support system as there are a lot of people out there in a similar situation to share thoughts and experiences with and offer advice. I was advised to contact my local Maggies centre for help. It took a lot of strength to do it but I'm glad I did. They have been very helpful and offer group or one to one support. I have been given individual weekly support with one of their psychologists. It is good to talk to an outsider and to be able to be open and honest.

Cazza 
Lisa5757
Posted by

Thankyou for your reply, I’m sorry you’re feeling the way I do but glad you’ve found help. It’s two years since my treatment finished and I’ve struggled every day with normal day to day things and shut myself away. I hate looking in the mirror as I don’t see the person I was anymore. It’s got really bad and I’m ashamed to say I’ve often wished it had taken me. I’m in a waiting list to see a physiologist but could be months yet. I’ve tried a cancer counsellor but didn’t get anything from it. I’d cry my heart out and leave feeling exhausted and deflated. Talking to people that feel the same and been through what I have or similar is helping as no one else understands and say I should ‘sort myself out’ and be glad it’s over. Thankyou so much for taking the time to reply and hope you’re ok x

LisaCardiff
Posted by

Hi Lisa5757,

I am Lisa too. Sorry you're feeling so down and depressed. I feel the same too.

You're a brave lady and have been through the mill and it's unfair. I had stage 4 cancer of the cervix and thankfully I have been given the all clear but I have a colostomy and an ursotomy. My body has changed and while I am so grateful and pleased to be alive, I worry all the time over my colostomy because lately I have been having problems with it blocking or being constipated. 

I haven't many friends, well most of them live in Australia, America and South Africa and I haven't got many local friends. My parents are in their 80's and my mum is very unwell, so I feel so isolated and alone. I find this site and the lovely people on here a big help.

I am hoping to visit my local Maggie's Centre next week. I have been told they offer great support and help. I say hoping because I am having problems with my colostomy and if the constipation doesn't clear up, I will have to see the Stoma nurses.

I have too have been referred for counselling as I think I have PTSD but there is a 6 month waiting list. Great!. I feel no one understands and think I am playing up but I am not.

Anyway, I hope you are feeling brighter.

Take care and with kindness,

Lisa