Life post cancer...a heads up would've been nice.

It has been almost two months since finishing my cancer treatments, and since then I have felt like I just needed a break from really thinking too much about cancer, which included writing in this blog. During treatments I was eager to read, write, and think about my cancer...a lot...but after finishing treatments I was just a little burnt out, and felt like I didn't have any energy for it. I still feel this way, but wanted to update the people who read my blog on how life has been for me "post cancer." And to be honest, life after cancer is NOT easy at all...it's freaking hard! Why didn't anyone warn me? I have been struggling with adjusting to life after cancer immensely. One of my biggest struggles has been getting people to understand how I feel about all that I've been through...and it hasn't been easy. I feel a definite lack of understanding. Most people have the attitude that I am "done" with cancer now and should be able to move on and not think about it anymore. Those people couldn't be more wrong. I have a constant worry and anxiety about my cancer coming back, and death has been on my mind more now, than any other time during this horrendous "journey." I am still shocked sometimes to even say "I had cancer." It just seems unreal, and like it was all just a horrible nightmare. I don't want to dwell on all that I've been through, but I am still fresh out of treatments, so it's hard not to think about it. The uncertainty of future scans is extremely scary and anxiety producing for me. I feel like I am expected to just forget that I had cancer and move on with my life, and I really don't know how to do that...


From the outside, everybody says how great I look and how well I'm doing. Even my Oncologist says I'm doing great. But I feel like saying, "HOW do you know that I am doing great??!!!" I really don't feel that way. Just because I am not acting like an emotional mess in front of people does not mean that I am doing/feeling "great." I'm not saying that I am not appreciative of my "cancer-free body," but I can't seem to kick this feeling that brings a lump up in my throat from just thinking about the fact that I've even had to go through any of this.    

I'm left now with jacked up looking hair, scars all over my chest from my lymph node biopsy and port surgeries, my constant muscle aches and pains (from chemo), and the non-stop exhaustion and weakness that I feel...I know that it can always be worse, and I'm not trying to be negative, but it just sucks. I'm taking my time to heal and fully process all that I've been through, and it might take me longer than most people would like, but I can't worry about other people right now. Other than the small group of amazingly supportive people I have had in my life, I have sadly also experienced the complete opposite. There have been some who have been completely selfish. It's pretty sad and pathetic if you ask me. Having cancer has definitely taught me many things about people, and it's scary how when it comes down to it, there are really only a handful who genuinely care. In the beginning I had to deal with the initial shock of diagnosis, and then I was numb during treatments...definite survival mode, and now I am dealing with all of these different emotions and feelings after cancer. I know it will all be fine, like everybody tells me, but it doesn't make it any easier to deal with.
 
Here is a recent pic of my hair. It is growing in pretty good, just not as fast as I would like it to. I am using Nioxin shampoon & conditioner, leave in conditioner by RevitaLash, and taking hair vitamins along with extra biotin. I'm not sure if any of this is helping, but I continue to do it just in case :) A lot of people have asked if my hair is any different, since it usually grows in a different color or texture after cancer, but I can't really tell yet. So far, it seems the same to me as before.



LymphomaInfo Social