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  1. Most breast cancers are detected by the person themself, by detecting a lump or noticing a change in their breast.  If you find a lump DO NOT IGNORE IT.  Delaying seeing a Doctor by even a few weeks can make a big difference.  Would you rather have treatment and be alive OR be scared, put off seeing a Doctor and then be told it's too late????  That may sound blunt/harsh but it's a reality.

    Some breast cancers can't be felt and are detected by mammogram only - like mine.  I couldn't feel a lump - nothing at all.  There were no indications that I had cancer, although in hindsight, I'd been quite tired for a few months and also wasn't feeling quite myself.  Could that have been the cancer?  I don't know.  If it hadn't been for the routine mammogram though, I wouldn't be here to tell the tale.

    I know mammograms are not the most pleasant things on earth BUT it's 5 minutes of having your boob squished and that 5 minutes could save your life.

    BE SMART - CHECK YOURSELF!

  2. "Your hair will grow back" - well yes, it will, but how about you shave your hair off and then see if "it'll grow back" will make you feel great!  I had posted this blog and one of my friends said "Saying to someone " It'll grow back" is so insensitive, like saying to someone suffering depression " Pull yourself together"....Most of us can remember having a hair do that we hated and yes, it grows out but until it does, it doesn't matter what anyone says, you still feel awful....Well losing your hair must be a million times worse than that, plus everything else you're having to deal with at that time".  I thought that was a really good analogy so, with her permission have reproduced it here.

    "I really don't feel well" - this one really makes me laugh!  I've had loads of people who have had a cough or cold say this to me as I've been going through treatment (and they knew I was having chemotherapy)!  Well, actually cancer trumps that one lol.  I don't think you'll ever hear the words "I don't feel well" come out of my mouth again unless I'm REALLY am suffering!

    "Be positive" - this is one of my pet hates!  I can't be positive about having cancer BUT I can be brave in my fight to get through the treatment.  I'd prefer it if people said to me "you'll get through it" or "you can do it".

    "You're strong" or "You're brave" - I don't mind being told I'm strong (although I know others hate it) because I know I am strong so for me that's probably a true statement!  As for the "You're brave" well, I don't think anybody with cancer is brave.  They've had a disease thrown at them and they've got to get on with it.  Ok, I know some people find that difficult to do but it's nothing to do with bravery.

    "Poor woman" - I never go out in public without my wig and make up on now as I'm acutely aware how I look BUT the other day I had to go to my doctors and was suffering with pneumonia so I thought I'd drive there and back and nobody would see me.  However, outside the surgery there were 5 women standing and chatting.  They looked at me and looked away, avoiding eye contact.  I had my beanie on but it's very clear that I don't have hair underneath.  As I walked past, I heard a woman say "poor woman".  I KNOW she was saying it to be kind and it was heartfelt but it made me feel like a victim.  I hated it.  I cried all the way home and it really affected me.  Instead of pity, a smile and eye contact is worth a million words.

    "Have you tried [insert some weird or wacky plant or treatment here] as my friend used it and it cured her cancer" - okay, well news flash, if any of these things actually worked then the cure for cancer would have been found!

    When cancer treatment has finished "You're cured now" - this is probably one of the worst things you can say!  Once you have cancer, the fear of a recurrence is always there.  The treatment has worked but you can never say you're cured.  Even the medical profession will say you have "no evidence of disease" but they never say you're cured. 

  3. Welcome to my first blog!!!

    You may be wondering why I decided to launch this website and if I'm honest I'm not sure!  The idea started when I was telling somebody about my journey and explained how much I'd Googled and got myself thoroughly confused.  The information I found most interesting and helpful were actually blogs by "real people" going through cancer but these were normally blogs and so didn't have the general information that I needed.  So I guess that's why I decided to do it.

    Finding a name was a trauma!  All the good names were taken and I was left with Team Breast Cancer (but that sounded like I wanted to join the team rather than fight it!) or Project Breast Cancer and I suppose I've looked at this like a project so it seemed to fit better.

    Funniy enough, I was having my blood taken today and looked at the Nurses and wondered what they would think about it?  I may confess and ask them to have a look!!!!!

    In the meantime, I'd love to know if there's anything you'd like included on the website or if there's anything you think is portrayed incorrectly or needs adding.  Let me know and I'll happily look at all suggestions.

    Keep well, Michele x