i am 4 days into this. I told my daughters last night and it was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. But it’s done. They made me proud. But I can see how terrified they are.
I was surprised how much relief I felt afterwards. I felt the best I had felt since the start. The sickness that I have been feeling constantly since diagnosis disappeared and I ate a small meal for the first time since Tuesday and kept it down.
This morning I have wakened up instantly feeling sick again. I had hoped that it would stop. I am learning that I need to distract myself to give me a break but can’t seem to care about anything. I am usually a news and politics nerd but I cant seem to engage with my usual online reading and twitter. I have tried watching some tv but can’t really get into it. My life is busy enough with house to run, two dogs to walk and work but that doesn’t fill all the waking hours. So I find myself thinking too much and I need to distract.
What do you all do when your mind takes you to places you don’t want to go? Is it a personal thing or are there strategies to deal with this ? I have something to calm me down from the doctor but I am afraid of feeling out of it. I have never taken that sort of thing before
I feel so selfish posting on here without responding to others. Please bear with me as I can’t bring myself to read about what comes next just yet. But I will get there.
But thank you all so much for coming back to me.
Morning Harvester. First of all, well done for telling your daughters. Not surprised u felt relieved afterwards.
I am an avid reader n find it relaxing to be in a totally different world - currently in medieval Cambridge among the university scholars, incl a physician
Have been following the cricket tho it's been affected by rain.Do u watch/ listen to sport!? Can't b bothered with news especially re Tory leadership " race". Find politics,a turn off tbh
I also write to umpteen penfriends but have to school myself not to dwell on health news - unless it's good of course lol
I'm sure other ppl will have many different ways of filling the time....
I very clearly remember that time seven months ago. Yes I felt relieved once I had told my three adult sons. Like your daughters they were shocked but glad to be told and I had to promise to keep them fully informed and not to hide things from them. Cancer invaded my every waking moment and I just couldn’t sleep. I tried everything to banish the thoughts but struggled to find anything that worked. Like you I couldn’t eat and the weight fell off me. I couldn’t even face going to work so got signed off. I found talking to anyone who would listen helped and writing down my feelings. I also listed questions that I needed to ask and did a lot of research. For me knowledge is powerful. I realised that I needed to get back in control of the ‘runawaytrain’ So I got as fit as I could and read books that took little concentration. I also tried mindfulness which helped a little. Once I had a date for the operation I felt back in control and the anxiety didn’t completely go but lessened.
Good Morning Harvester,
Well done on talking to your daughters. I think having done that you will find everything a bit easier now.
I found that to distract myself I had to either go very simple or very complicated. I also read books which I enjoyed but did not tax me too much. I went back and read a few old favourites. That had the benefit that if I did drift out of the story because I started thinking about cancer I could easily get back in as I already knew the story. The same thing was true for films and tv series. I often think that if you can think of the things you used to enjoy doing as a child, reading, colouring, playing an instrument, exploring wildlife, then you will probably still be able to enjoy them you might just have to change your approach. There are adult colouring books or mandalas, Netflix and on demand TV, tutorials on You Tube for playing instruments. Several people on the site use Audiobooks as they struggle to focus enough to read but enjoy listening to the story being read out. If you cannot cope with reading about politics why not try to find politics programmes on catch up tv.
Alternatively you can go for more concentration but in a specific area to avoid you thinking of cancer. This is where things like mindfulness where you focus totally on the here and now come in. I had told my family and friends about my situation, told them what I did and didn't want them to say or do in relation to my health and then asked them just to include me in the conversations as usual and the wide ranging discussions, jokes and occasional bit of gossip kept my interest going enough to stop me thinking of cancer.
Having to walk dogs is difficult as this is normally a good bit of time to be alone with your thoughts which is what you are trying to avoid at the moment. Again I would possibly suggest downloading an audiobook or going with someone else so you can chat as you walk.
Do you know when your next appointment is yet? As was said previously knowing what is going on makes things easier to manage.
If you have the time you might want to take a few minutes to fill in your profile. If you click on your username at the top right of the page it takes you to your profile page and the edit profile button allows you to add or remove things from that whenever you like. If you click on anyone else's username where it is underlines and appears in bold it will take you to their profile so you can see the sort of things that others have put.
Individuals respond differently to medications and whilst some people feel spaced out with it others just lose the edge of their anxiety. I know some people try taking them on a week end or in the evening to see what the impact is on them when they are not required to interact with others so they can decide if they want to keep on taking them, maybe this might work for you?
Don't worry about responding to posts, some people join the site and just read other peoples posts and find their answers and feel less alone that way, some others only post questions as at the moment they are too confused to do anything else and don't feel able to support others. Some of us enjoy the interaction and like to try and offer support where possible. It is whatever works for you.
I hope that you have a good weekend,
All the best,
I used audiobooks just after my op as I couldn't concentrate enough to read. Most public libraries lend them n some also lend ebooks n e audiobooks.
I believe there are mindfulness apps to download on the net. Haven't tried them yet, too busy reading lol. I like the adult colouring books too..Gragon's given u lots of ideas - why not have a go at something that sparks off your enthusiasm?
Enjoy the weekend x
You can listen to past radio programmes online. The app is now called Sounds I believe but once you find a programme you’re interested in you’ll be directed to it and it’s easy to use. I also enjoy looking for favourite music on YouTube. Both pass the time without needing much concentration when I’m feeling stressed.
I'm a reader too! In fact my husband just bought me a kindle for my birthday as he realised that it's the one time that I totally switch off.
I stayed at work before my op which kept me very focussed, but I know that's not for everyone.
Can you make the most of the beautiful weather? Just go for a few day trips (or longer) out with your daughters etc?I'd have a go with the meds. I hear lots of people say various drugs space them out (tramadol as pain relief being one of them, which didn't touch the sides for me) but I've never had a reaction to anything like that in my life - including anti-depressants when I was younger - they just do their required job for me. You might be pleasantly surprised - and if you don't like them you can stop, nothing lost and potentially a gain.Do you do any crafting at all? Or gardening? Or an easy exercise class maybe, water aerobics is fun and as taxing as you want it to be?
If u do decide to go on - then come off - antidepressants wean yourself off gradually .
Water aerobics sounds good. Can u do it if u wear specs?
Yes, no problem at all! I see lots of ladies who barely get their hair wet! I tend to be a bit more energetic, but only because I've swum all my life and love the water. You can also get goggles made to your prescription if you want to swim and see!
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