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aimees71
07-15-2007, 01:19 PM
Hi everyone... it's been a while.

I got my stitches out on Monday, almost a week ago. And, unexpectedly, it opened my emotional floodgates! I have been so sad and depressed, crying all week. I thought this whole time I had been dealing well with my diagnosis and surgery, but now I realize there was much more going on. I think I kept it all at bay so that I could get through the surgery and then when the stitches came out the physical part was really all over, so emotionally I just fell apart. Has this happened to any of you? :confused:

I realized this week how sad I was for myself, for my body, for all the life changes I have to make. The physical recovery has been difficult. I realized, too, that I feel so isolated and alone. I feel abandonned by my friends... thank god my family has been truly wonderful. But it's a weird feeling of.... I don't know.... cancer isolates you, makes you different and alone. It's very unlike me to be negative, but this is real. If anyone out there has experienced this, does it go away?

I also have a derm check this coming week, so I am getting anxious about a number of moles/skin issues I'd like to have checked. I did not realize I would have this anxiety/fear that there is more. Camille, you have mentioned feeling this way. I worry about weird looking moles and spots I assumed were psoriasis, but may not be. Now I understand better your feelings. :(

I am trying to write, to let myself rest without beating myself up for doing nothing, and to reach out for help. So, any words of wisdom would be really appreciated. Thanks to all of you for your understanding and support! I'm so glad this Health Board is here...

Ga Lady
07-15-2007, 04:59 PM
Yes Sweetie...I went through the same emotions. I felt like I neededto be making funeral arrangements while my daughter was making out Graduation Invitations. Let yourself mourn. Let yourself cry. GET IT ALL OUT! I would wake up every morning with this doom and gloom feeling. I was an emotional wreck. And I even worked WITH MY DERM then. So it's a matter of getting past it...going through it...dealing and learning to cope. It's been two years for me now. I've had 2 more removed that were nothing but OH ME the anxiety I felt when I seen the "oddity" at the time. I had so many scans and MRI and Ultrasounds that it scared me because my body had weird stuff that they thought it had metasized and I went to pieces...I finally just told the good Lord....I am letting Go...and You take control! And He did!

Not pushing religion sweetie...so dont think that...But prayer got me to the happiness that I have today! You will get to that too!

mcr285
07-15-2007, 10:36 PM
...I finally just told the good Lord....I am letting Go...and You take control! And He did!

Not pushing religion sweetie...so dont think that...But prayer got me to the happiness that I have today! You will get to that too!

that is some very sound advice! :)

hi, aimee. it sounds like you're feeling like you've lost control of what's happening to you in your life. something that might be helpful is if you spend some time learning as much as you can about all the different ways to fight this disease. it might be information that you never ever need to look at again ever, but at least you'll feel more like you're in control and prepared to face it if it did come back. does that make sense?

let me give you an example that has absolutely nothing to do with melanoma...

i was raised to be prepared for everything! in my bedroom closet, we have a spot to go in case of tornadoes or horrible storms (it's dead center of my house), and we keep emergency supplies there... some extra food, bottles of water, a 72 hour emergency kit, a weather radio, flashlights, batteries, diapers, extra clothes for my kids... every so often we go and rotate the stuff out and recheck it to make sure it's all up to date, but then when we're done with it, we put it all back and we don't think about it again. but anytime a severe weather report comes on, i keep an eye on it, i listen for those warning beeps when they give out updated warnings, i listen to the weather guy, i make my own judgements, and i feel safe knowing that even though i cannot control the weather, i have done everything i can possibly do in order for myself and my family to survive.

so what does the weather have to do with melanoma? pretty much nothing... except that we can't really control either one. only God does that, and only He knows what's going to happen with it. the best thing we can do is get prepared for it, pay attention to the warnings, listen to the experts, make our own judgements, and then give it over to the Lord. two things i can promise you are that first, He is ALWAYS there, and second, He'll never give you anything you can't handle. you're stronger than you think you are!

you're in my prayers. i hope things start looking up for you soon! :)

camille2000
07-16-2007, 09:57 AM
Hi Aimee, Yes I still do sometimes and my aunt told me this week end that it takes a while. She was very down and eventually and more ups than down and now after 8 years she is doing really great. The way we must look at it is that we are not cancer patients as if we were we would receive treatment. I went to my dermatologist today for a check up and to have my husband, little boy and my 16 years old checked. We took his afternoon. Everyone is fine but my 16 years old has a mole that needs to be checked every year. The 2 othe rdaughters will go in August. he told me about other patients in same situation as me and how well they are doing so that was reassuring. He also told me that I must think "cured" as the reports are good and there is no cancer. I have to see him every 3 months for a year and then twice a year. he took pictures of my moles. Told me I do not have that many (too bad that for the fea I have one had to be melanoma...) also showed him a black dot on my face (thought it was melanoma of course...) and he removed it as it was a black head which I inflicted myself when removing a millium spot. I am looking at all my little moles everywhere and trust me I will for a long time. But don't feel sad, your SLN was good so now it is time to think NO CANCER left! Even if a node comes up it does not mean it is bad and no he confirmed that I do not have to worry each time I am sick. He mentionned a Stage 3 patient who went to see him with a swollen node and it was nothing. I also had a look at my second biopsy report and I thought Clark and Breslow but there are so many other things involved. Dont hesitate to write, I understand the feeling of loneliness but that will also go when you feel yourself again and start seeing friends. Big hug!;)

Hi everyone... it's been a while.

I got my stitches out on Monday, almost a week ago. And, unexpectedly, it opened my emotional floodgates! I have been so sad and depressed, crying all week. I thought this whole time I had been dealing well with my diagnosis and surgery, but now I realize there was much more going on. I think I kept it all at bay so that I could get through the surgery and then when the stitches came out the physical part was really all over, so emotionally I just fell apart. Has this happened to any of you? :confused:

I realized this week how sad I was for myself, for my body, for all the life changes I have to make. The physical recovery has been difficult. I realized, too, that I feel so isolated and alone. I feel abandonned by my friends... thank god my family has been truly wonderful. But it's a weird feeling of.... I don't know.... cancer isolates you, makes you different and alone. It's very unlike me to be negative, but this is real. If anyone out there has experienced this, does it go away?

I also have a derm check this coming week, so I am getting anxious about a number of moles/skin issues I'd like to have checked. I did not realize I would have this anxiety/fear that there is more. Camille, you have mentioned feeling this way. I worry about weird looking moles and spots I assumed were psoriasis, but may not be. Now I understand better your feelings. :(

I am trying to write, to let myself rest without beating myself up for doing nothing, and to reach out for help. So, any words of wisdom would be really appreciated. Thanks to all of you for your understanding and support! I'm so glad this Health Board is here...

camille2000
07-16-2007, 01:15 PM
Me again. As I am going to the mountain in August (winter in SA can be cold but it is always very sunny) and to the sea in December I asked my dermatologist about precautions (his dad had melanoma) and he told me to put sunscreen 30 protection, swim warm up a little in the sun and then a tee shirt, hat (some are cute) and under the umbrella. Not too bad I am sure you do not have to change your lifestyle so much (good glasses maybe:cool: which I will buy for all of us) but anyway to lie down in the sun too much will make us look like old prunes at 55 so let's look at the up side. Lets have a nice colour so we look healthy. South African Sun can be very damaging and my husband who hates sun cream, hats... was really listening today! You know I also feel that speaking about your melanoma to friends will not help. So do not tell them but keep speaking to your family and to people who went thru the same thing. It is what I am doing not sure it works all the time but I do not want people to think I am "sick" and for many cancer means "dying" as they do not read all facts as we do and it might frighten them (the psychologist is talking....) but just guessing. I just want to support and be there. Do not think I am super women as believe me I still have panic attacks but it is getting better.:)


Hi Aimee, Yes I still do sometimes and my aunt told me this week end that it takes a while. She was very down and eventually and more ups than down and now after 8 years she is doing really great. The way we must look at it is that we are not cancer patients as if we were we would receive treatment. I went to my dermatologist today for a check up and to have my husband, little boy and my 16 years old checked. We took his afternoon. Everyone is fine but my 16 years old has a mole that needs to be checked every year. The 2 othe rdaughters will go in August. he told me about other patients in same situation as me and how well they are doing so that was reassuring. He also told me that I must think "cured" as the reports are good and there is no cancer. I have to see him every 3 months for a year and then twice a year. he took pictures of my moles. Told me I do not have that many (too bad that for the fea I have one had to be melanoma...) also showed him a black dot on my face (thought it was melanoma of course...) and he removed it as it was a black head which I inflicted myself when removing a millium spot. I am looking at all my little moles everywhere and trust me I will for a long time. But don't feel sad, your SLN was good so now it is time to think NO CANCER left! Even if a node comes up it does not mean it is bad and no he confirmed that I do not have to worry each time I am sick. He mentionned a Stage 3 patient who went to see him with a swollen node and it was nothing. I also had a look at my second biopsy report and I thought Clark and Breslow but there are so many other things involved. Dont hesitate to write, I understand the feeling of loneliness but that will also go when you feel yourself again and start seeing friends. Big hug!;)

Ladypepper
07-19-2007, 12:07 AM
I hope you are feeling a lot better... I think it is very normal to have a moment when it all just hits you. In the beginning you are just doing what you have to do. The tests, dr appts, surgery, more dr appts... you are just kind of swept up in this tornado and when it settles down it just kind of hits you.

I spent so much time fighting with the doctors office and insurance that I didnt even have time to realize what I was dealing with. Then one day I just felt like someone punched me in the stomach when I realized I had cancer!

Have your cry and a litte bit of a pity party and then move on. :) Don't dwell on it or live in fear. Thank the heavens above that you are here and healthy and able to tell your story! :) And keep up with your check ups!

aimees71
07-20-2007, 09:00 PM
Thank you to all of you for your responses, kind words, words of wisdom, and prayers. Really, thank you!

I am slowly healing, emotionally. I am crying less, praying a lot, and getting a lot of Reiki treatments. I am going slow, and grateful that I have the ability to go slow... I don't go back to work for a couple more weeks. And I'm reaching out to people that I know can be supportive (all of you, my family, and a select friend) and not reaching out to those I know cannot be supportive (that way I don't get hurt on top of all of this). I just had my check up... two more biopsies (I'm not too worried) and another excission of an atypical area (5 stitches, more painful than I anticipated).

I am very sad, but I am very thankful and feel so blessed all at the same time...Thanks again to all of you for lending me your memories and strength...what I wouldn't give to see all your faces and exchange hugs. :angel:

camille2000
07-21-2007, 04:18 AM
Hi Aimees. I am sorry that you are still sad. Your results are good and soon you will feel a lot better. I think going back to work will help as it means normal life again. Believe me I still think daily about the ordeal but my aunt says that eventually it becomes better. We are more at risk to get another melanoma but as my dermatologist said it will be very early stage as we are being followed. and it will be another primary. And not everyone will get it. The weather in SA is warming up a little and we will go for a pique nique tomorrow. I hope you have a nice week end and let me know how you are doing.;)

Thank you to all of you for your responses, kind words, words of wisdom, and prayers. Really, thank you!

I am slowly healing, emotionally. I am crying less, praying a lot, and getting a lot of Reiki treatments. I am going slow, and grateful that I have the ability to go slow... I don't go back to work for a couple more weeks. And I'm reaching out to people that I know can be supportive (all of you, my family, and a select friend) and not reaching out to those I know cannot be supportive (that way I don't get hurt on top of all of this). I just had my check up... two more biopsies (I'm not too worried) and another excission of an atypical area (5 stitches, more painful than I anticipated).

I am very sad, but I am very thankful and feel so blessed all at the same time...Thanks again to all of you for lending me your memories and strength...what I wouldn't give to see all your faces and exchange hugs. :angel:

aimees71
07-26-2007, 09:50 AM
Hi everyone! My last two biopsies and excission came back clean! Yeah! I think I'm done giving up chunks of myself for at least a few months! I hope all of you are doing very well.

westllen
07-27-2007, 06:36 PM
Hi everyone! My last two biopsies and excission came back clean! Yeah! I think I'm done giving up chunks of myself for at least a few months! I hope all of you are doing very well.


WOOHOOO!! Sorry to be coming to this so late, but this is why you had all those emotions running thru you ;) It's the unknown that is so scary, it makes you feel like a prisoner to it, doesn't it??

Now, enjoy life, be diligent about your check ups and WEAR SUNSCREEN :D