Triple-negative breast cancer survivor seeks answer to recurrence fears


Jeanie recently posted a comment to Susan's blog (Finally good news for triple negative breast cancer patients), which was posted several years ago. I'm not sure if many other TNBC survivors will see her message on the older blog, so I wanted to repost it. Hopefully someone out there can help Jeanie and give her some advice on living with the fear of recurrence. I was diagnosed in 2/2011 with triple negative invasive ductal carconoma. In May I opted for a bilateral mastectomy because I also had some abnormalities on my right breast opposite from the left that had a tumor the size of 3.6 cm who seemed to have appeared over night. I am 36 years old, divorced with two children and having a dificult time with all this. I have become severely depressed and self conscience, leading to rarely leaving my house beacuse of the way I look. I have no hair and only have one expander in due to the other becoming infected and replacement was not an option at the time. I have never been much to crave any type of attention nor pity and I don't handle it well. I am about to get my last chemo tomorrow. TC is my regimen ... But I am sooo scared I dread a recurrence. How can I go on with my life if no one can tell me it's gone because they checked and don't see any. How do they know 4 cycles was enough? I know about how they base it on studies and all but I am not a study. I am an individual. We all are. And I think since no one can tell me where it came from or if it will be back for sure, they should at least be able to give me a clear answer now as to what we have done so far to me, the individual, is working or worked. Something that says there are currently no cancer cells present after chemotherapy... something, anything. I am tired of all the suprises and I don't want to live the next three to five years of my life thinking "is today the day?" because my head hurts or my hair is falling out, I'm starting to feel sluggish and fatigued again... I'm really scared, and I can't seem to overcome this fear, I got no warning signs the first time, and I know if there was to be a second there won't be any either. I wish everyone the best health and healing. And I pray that the lost find their way again and the one who have found their way to show us the way. God bless us all.

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