Saturday, June 30, 2007

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

As I was reading some of the booklets I picked up at the radiation oncologist’s office, I was moved by one of them that advised to keep a journal. Well, that’s what a blog is isn’t it? Well, sort of. And I intent to use this one for that purpose. So don’t be surprised by the mood of this entry.

I'm not sure I can do the rest of this treatment. I really don't. Perhaps I should quit reading about radiation therapy. I am really scared. The cautions about the effects are really nagging at me. Plus, I feel that my support system in G is dwindling. I tried to open a dialog last night, but there didn’t seem to be much interest.

I am angry that this treatment is going to take over my life for the next two months. I guess the spoiled brat is coming out - in spades! I was used to having to be available after teaching for 29+ years. But now I am used to having some Mondays free for travel.

I am worried about my eventual reconstruction surgery, and that is one surgery I really want. My surgeon left some tissue so that reconstruction would be easier. That’s great, but the problem is that extra tissue is uncomfortable - especially under my arm. I am so worried that there will be permanent damage to the skin making reconstruction impossible.

I was able to make it through chemo without considerable nausea and so on. From what I was reading, that is possible with radiation. I was able to keep mouth sores away. I have mouth full of crowns that worry me. The booklets said that dentures may not fit properly with radiation. Will my crowns be affected as well?

I just sounds like radiation is far worse than chemo. I just don’t know that I can do all this for another two months. My attitude and will have just gone terribly south. I think the best thing is to stop reading about what may happen. Ignorance may be bliss. I need some bliss.


Anonymous said...

My so-called side effects were minimal, mostly cosmetic. Yes my skin turned orangie, red and was tender but that was it....felt like a good sunburn. I know it's a drag to have to be somewhere daily and that you will be tied to another medical appointment but it's do-able. My husband had/has no interest in my treatments and I wasn't really interested in talking with him about it either. My treatment facility has a family therpist available to talk to, does yours? I stopped reading cancer material because it scared me and I figured there was little I could do about my situation after the fact. Things I learned, from my radiation doctor, was that the beam is only directed to your breast area, the beam does not go as far as your lungs/heart. I have had no problems with my teeth, wasn't sick, in fact this was simple and easy, except for getting myself to the appointments. Hope this information helps.

Anonymous said...

I gave up reading stuff when my mom was sick, it helped a lot.

She did radiation, and, was in very poor health when she started, and, she did great.

It made her a little tired, and, she got a bit of pharyngitis (her site was upper lung), but, nothing terrible.

Is there an American Cancer Society chapter near you? Sometimes they have volunteers who can help with transportation to appointments, and, they can keep you company as well.

Grandma K said...

I guess Im was really feeling sorry for myself for a while, or perhaps I was just in a snit.
LeeAnn, thanks. Your comment did help because I don't really know anyone who has had radiation for breast cancer. My best friend's husband had radiation about 20 years ago, and he had a really tough time with it. His condition was totally different from mine.
Busy Mom, thanks for your comment as well. I promised to stop reading, and that promise lasted about 10 hours. I just read "with a grain of salt" now!
Thanks to you both for stopping by and reading my rant!

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