Hi all im new to this but my mom has recently been diagnosed with cervical cancer at stage 3c1 and its spread and shes so scared and doesnt know what to expect, we know shes got to have both radio and cemo she has an appointment next week to discuss treatment plan ect but we all so scared and dont know what to expect if anyone has any advice for me that would be great my family are heartbroken but my mom is really struggling with it. Thank you for listening
Please try not to concentrate on survival rates or any sort of prognosis at this stage as it’s likely to bring you and your mum down mentally. Survival rates, here in the UK at least, are based on data from the last 5 years so by their very nature are out of date when they are published. I don’t Google stuff like this for myself, and asked my consultant never to tell me. I know I had about a 30% chance of long term survival after my last surgery-I’m 3 years out, so very hopeful for 5. I do try my best to keep positive.
Before any treatment starts, your mum should be signing a consent form. This will detail all the potential side effects but it doesn’t mean your mum would have all or any of them. It all depends on how she reacts to the treatment, but the hospital has to make patients aware of all possibilities.
Try if you can to have a more positive mindset to encourage your mum. Many ladies go on to have successful treatment, so encourage her if possible to think that she could be one of them.
She will probably be scared, and going into the unknown of what treatment will be like is difficult. Have you told her what Snobird has been telling you about her experience which was overall a good one?
I was in hospital last month for more than a week, and the doctor who discharged me said that my positive attitude was a huge factor in how I was coping. He said as doctors they see so much better results from people who can remain positive as much as possible. I know it’s not possible all the time and that’s ok. But try not to dwell on worst case scenarios as no amount of worrying will change anything. Try and make the focus on treatment being an option and other ladies having positive outcomes from it. My philosophy has always been to look for the silver lining in everything, and sometimes things have been very bleak for me. But there is joy in every day if you look.
Is your mum in pain? If so, that can bring you down but should be managed. Anxiety can also be managed. Meditation, breathing exercises and mindfulness are all self help techniques which can be very useful in managing feelings. You need to look after yourself too in order to help her. Cancer has a ripple effect throughout the whole family, not just the patient, so you need to keep your energy up and try your best to be calm. That’s the most important type of thing to be aware of in my opinion when you are looking after someone with cancer. I’m sure you are trying your very best, and I can appreciate how hard that is for you, but you will be helping her more than you might realise.
Hang in there-treatment should start soon after the planning scan is done.
SarahH21 thank you sarah, yes my moms in pain but the hospital gave her morphine to help with the pain, ive also told her everything you guys have been telling me and im finding it helps so much, but she doesnt seem positive and doesnt want to read anything about whats going to happen ect i totally understand that completely because its scary but when shes told by the doctor whats going to happen she gets more upset, i think its going to be a rough road but i know she can fight this i have all the faith in her to do it.. sarah i hope your well? Take care and thank you again xxx
I’m glad she has pain relief LilZoe but sometimes the battle in your head and the mental aspects can be almost as hard to deal with. I never read anything when I was first diagnosed so I understand that well. I never even opened the book I was given at the hospital until after I had finished treatment.
My own personal way of coping was to take one day at a time, one appointment at a time, and sometimes even an hour at a time, otherwise I found it overwhelming. I went alone for my diagnosis, because I had no idea it would be cancer, but took my partner to every other appointment as they were able to ask questions and pick up on things I had missed.
Yes, it’s a tough road to travel and the treatment is intense, but it’s over a relatively short period of time, weeks not months, so just get through each day as it comes and try not to look too far ahead.
I am doing well thank you-I currently have another issue to deal with but it’s nothing to do with my cancer.
Hi LilZoe..... I would like this is to be a message of hope for you and your mum. Having been diagnosed at the same stage as your mum I am now one year post treatment (the same treatment as your mum's). Last Sunday I went for my 1 year anniversary MRI scan (first one in nine months) and today I went for my appointment to get the results. A resounding all clear. No evidence of any cancer or anything of any concern! There truly is plenty of hope for your mum and Sarah has given you so much good advice. I know that your Mum will feel better once she starts treatment but there are little things she can do to help her prepare and feel in control such as healthy diet and plenty of water and as much exercise and fresh air as she can manage. Also, it is really true what Sarah says about a positive mindset, not always easy by any means but I'm glad you are feeling strong for your Mum xxx
Well Julie, this is lovely news to share in the group! I’m so pleased for you and it’s such a great encouragement for everyone. It’s great for you to be able to share such positive news which will help others like LilZoe’s mum and hopefully give her a very welcome boost. Hope you’re having a nice little celebration now!
Snobird i cant see julies comment not sure why, and thank you ladies my mom has her planning scan today and shes so scared but ive told her shes strong and can get through this, i need to put my big girl pants on and be stronger then ever for her now, SarahH21 i wish you all the best! U guys have really made a big difference for me and my thinking ect i cant thank you enough xxx
Snobird’s real name is Julie. Sorry-I’ve known her in the group for more than a year so we use our own names.
The planning scan is very straightforward so should be easy for your mum-just a simple CT scan to plan the radiotherapy. Hope she gets on ok today and it’s the last step before treatment can start. Good luck!
Hi Sarah and thanks so much. I must admit I didn't really get a lot of sleep over the last week but so so pleased with the result of the scan. I'm so sorry to read that you're having (non cancer related) issues and I hope they are all resolved very soon. My thoughts are with you xxx