Thursday, April 24, 2014
Of all the procedures I went through - core needle biopsies, lumpectomy, sentinel node biopsy, chemo and radiation - my hysterectomy was the hardest. To this day I am still feeling the effects.
And I don't like it.
I realize that menopause is a natural state for women as we age. It's not a disease and it's certainly nothing to be afraid of or ashamed of. But when you hit menopause instantly rather than letting your body transition in its own good time, the changes can be very hard to handle. At least, that has been my experience.
I don't want to sound like a complainer here. Menopause is better than cancer any day! But I will be 50 years old in just five days and I feel terrible. I feel like an old woman. An old, FAT woman.
I have neglected this blog for a variety of reasons. Mainly, I am very dissatisfied with my new "normal." I am out of shape, forgetful and more nervous about a cancer recurrence than I was about my initial diagnosis.
I wish I could report that my life returned to normal and everything is wonderful but that would be a lie. There are many wonderful things about my life, and I am very grateful! But my life is not what it was. And it is still not what I hoped it would be once I finished my treatments.
I continue to take tamoxifen every morning. As you can see from my countdown, I am about 38% through my 5 years of hormonal therapy. My next appointment with my oncologist is in June - two years after starting tamoxifen. We'll evaluate how I'm doing and decide whether or not to switch to an aromatase inhibitor. I know these drugs are not a walk in the park either.
So I have decided that during this 50th year of my life, I need to really take some serious action to get myself to a place where I am happy, healthy and less anxious. I've read my previous posts and they all say the same thing but I've done nothing about it. I am definitely in a rut and I want OUT!
One thing I did earlier this year was consult with a local cancer survivorship program. They have support group meetings, free yoga classes, all kinds of events and lectures -- everything I need to help me rebuild my life after cancer. They also recommended a licensed clinical therapist who specializes in cancer survivorship.
I made an appointment and will see her on my birthday. Happy Birthday to me! Nothing like seeing a therapist on your 50th birthday. ha!
I will try to do a better job of posting some updates. I realize there are very few of you (if any) who read this blog. That's okay. It's meant to be my own way of documenting my recovery and (hopefully) survival.
Either way, it's time for me to stop ignoring the fact that I had cancer and start reclaiming my life.