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Trying to be patient with stage 4 cancer
HereAndNow
4 Posts

Hi everyone. My mom was diagnosed a couple of months ago with stage 4 breast cancer that had spread to the lungs and the brain. She was treated with surgery and radiation and now she has regular checks to see if there are any new growths. I felt confident we weren't going to see any new growths for a couple of years, but at her last check they found a new spot in her brain. Luckily they treated it with radiation - but it just put me in a really bad place. She has another scan coming up this month and I guess maybe I was naive before, thinking it would all be alright, but now I realize it can be more bad news. I just don't know how people deal with this waiting game.

I'm trying my best to be in the moment and appreciate the time I have with her right now, but its so difficult when in the back of my mind I recognize she most likely won't be around for as long as I'd wish. It's hard to think about all the things she will miss in my life (marriage, kids, accomplishments). I also worry about my dad and how he will handle this loss. I'm not sure how I'm supposed to not worry all the time.

Thanks for reading.

9 Replies
ACH2015
2545 Posts

@HereAndNow

Hi, I read your post and wanted to offer some thoughts. It's only been a couple of months since your mom's diagnosis and you are likely still processing this alone. It's tough to accept and takes time to come to terms with all that a cancer diagnosis brings with it. Finding that balance to stay in the here and now is something that we all struggle with when faced with a situation that is new and still developing. Find that balance as best you can to accept, learn, be in the moment and help your mom and dad with any needs they may currently have. There is no right or wrong way to deal with what is on your plate, so follow your heart and instincts toward doing what you can here and now.

Keep well

ACH2015

Whitelilies
2745 Posts

@HereAndNow Hello and welcome from ON! So glad you connected here with us, and already posted! I am sorry, to hear of your moms' diagnosis….it is truly challenging, on the entire family….

As was just shared…..try, to focus on the “Here and Now” (your screen name - makes a LOT of sense)….Enjoy making dinner together, tonight….enjoy a walk this afternoon….just keep busy, keep together….perhaps you can accompany mom to an appt, if needed, less stress to not be driver/take notes,etc….

Yes, for everyone, waiting is a challenge (and not knowing, what is next)…..but we simply “learn” to wait….we must! We carry on! We must!

Why not ask your mom, what she wishes? A mini getaway with you? A hike on the weekend? A shopping excursion? Make her smile, with her choices!

Let us support you both!

Welcome Again

Whitelilies

#Newmember

p.s. If you need to talk more/chat….reach the Oncology social worker, at your moms' hospital, they are a wealth of knowledge, resources and even a support group or two; they will see family members too!

HereAndNow
4 Posts

@ACH2015 thank you for replying. Your words helped me remember how fresh this is and to be patient with learning to accept it all. I will try my best to follow my heart and instincts. Thank you again

HereAndNow
4 Posts

@Whitelilies thank you for replying. Reading your post brought me a moment of peace, so thank you for that. I love your advice, and I didn't know about the social worker… I might check that you. Thank you again.

HereAndNow
4 Posts

@Runner Girl @Mammabear just read her story. Really gives hope, amazing and happy for you :)

Mammabear
348 Posts

@HereAndNow sorry to hear your Mom is experiencing brain mets. I am going to tag @KTA who has had 9 I think. One removed the rest radiated. She has been on a new drug for the past year and has seen great results - no new and rest shrinking. KTA also has liver and bone mets. All doing well on this new drug. KTA and I are both triple positive so our drugs target the HER2+ nature. It would be good to know if your Mom is ER+, HER2+ or neg to all.

CCS helped me create my digital story. Show it to your mom. I was diagnosed stage 4 Aug 2019 (same with KTA).


Trillium
2372 Posts

@HereAndNow - glad you found us and are comfortable sharing with us too. Sorry your mom has been recently diagnosed with lung cancer that has spread to her brain. I don’t think you can help but worry about your mom and your dad. The thoughts of her not being there for your future marriage and children and all the joys that come from that can be so hard to imagine.

There are other young people who are here coping with a parent diagnosed with cancer too. I will try to find them for you tomorrow.

You may find this guide for young folks and the discussion topic for those supporting a parent helpful:

https://www.cancer.net/coping-with-cancer/caring-loved-one/young-adults-caring-parent-with-cancer

https://cancerconnection.ca/discussions/viewtopic/35/57052

A big warm hug for you❤️‍🩹

Sadie12
298 Posts

@Mammabear Such a beautiful, inspiring story even though the reason for it…well, sucks. You are amazing.

I've been loved by and loved German Shepherds in my life…loved to see the photos of yours there. Your family photo is lovely.

Your story is balm for many hearts here. Keep up the fight!

Sadie12

KTA
31 Posts

@HereAndNow
Hi there, as mentioned by @Mammabear I also have mets in my brain (or had) that have been removed surgically (1 of them) and by radiation (two other rounds of treatment to each address a few mets. It might not help, maybe it will - but it's always good to remember that as long as there are treatment options there is hope, and as long as there is hope you are not done yet. Brain mets can undergo multiple rounds of treatment if needed, depending on their location. So don't give up yet. Your mom probably has many of the same thoughts about her treatment and life-expectancy and all that she will be missing. Maybe try talking about these things with her? In any event, figuring out how to not worry, well on that I don't have much to day otherwise than keep a hopeful view on life. It's not over yet and spend the time you do have left doing the things that you and she love doing together. Best of luck!

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