Is it for me?

Thank you all for your lovely replies regarding the 'someone like me,'programme, I am concerned though because my problem isn't so much with the cancer (discharged from Oncology 3 March 2014 and 2 clear mammograms since), its more that I haven't fitted in back at work and I'm getting no support for people I work with, and I feel that 2's company jennys a crowd up there, there's only the 3 of us, so I'm trying to find someone who had been through a situation like this, hope you all have a good weekend x

12 Replies

  • Such a small work group can be a negative. I strongly suggest you get another job. A fresh start with new people. I did that after my treatment and it was brilliant.

  • Hi Jenny, you are a few steps ahead of me at the moment. I was diagnosed in October last year. First lot of chemo has been done, surgery, both breasts removed, residual cells found, now I'm nearly half way through second lot of chemo, still have radiotherapy to go too. I teach, and as soon as my diagnosis was given to me I let my principal know. As schools carry lots of bugs and viruses naturally, I was signed off immediately. I have found that living with cancer has changed me, changed my outlook, changed the Way I view the world and the people in it. I have popped in to visit on a couple of occasions, and yes there is a difference. Some give pitting looks, two bade a brief "hi how are you" and shot off not knowing what to say, those who keep in touch made me so utterly welcome. I watch the world closer now, I feel things that I didn't before. To be honest I am not going to rush back. I can't afford not to work, but I'm using this time to look at what I want to do. My treatment ends in July. I am not going back in September, I am remaining on the sick to build up my strength both emotionally, physically and psychologically in order to return to work. This year will have been one of a tsunami of appointments after appointment, treatment after treatment. I personally need time to get my head around what has happened to both myself and the Ripple effect it has had on my family. I am doing a lot of contemplating, and think that this may be my time to change what I do, how, I don't really know, but just from the visits, the way someone can just fill your boots when your not there, that really life goes on with or without you was a reality check for me. They have moved on without us because of the curve ball we were thrown that halted our 'flow'. I am nearly 50, I'm not fussed on playing catch-up, but I am putting happiness and less stress ahead of chaos and deadlines now. If I return to work it will be on terms that I can manage, none of us know what is around the corner. As you And I both know only too well, but I going to make sure that whatever it is, it's going to be met with happiness, positivity, and on my terms. Im currently looking at working from home, my hours leaving me time to enjoy my family, hobbies and life, one that can so easily be snatched away from us. I hope things work out for you. xx

  • Reading your reply I can relate to so much of it. I work within a Prison and also due to bugs, infections, diseases I am not allowed to work (their words) as it's not safe to my immune system. I want to return once treatment is over and maybe attend the monthly meeting depending on how I feel but I have found since diagnosis the I didn't have a 'Sara'. I was either giving 100% as a single mum or 100% at work. I had put 'me' completely on hold and I wasn't happy, I was actually quite low and lonely. I I am now trying to think about getting my happy back and carve a life for 'Sara' as well as loving being a mum and worker. I wish you well on your journey. How is your Chemo going? I hope not too many affects with this lot x

  • I'm holding up ok at the mo thanks SaraLouise. My husband was taken into hospital Yesterday with Crohns and had surgery so we have that to deal with, but as with all of the other hurdles, we will get over this. Just another blip. I took my two sons out last night for a meal which was relaxed and had an early night. I am relaxing now, coffee with a pal later today. I'm finding in this chemo I have a fairly good appetite, better than on my first chemo. But if I over do things I tend to get a fierce dose of the shakes. Just taking five before I head out for a coffee. Then it's feet up for the afternoon :-) it's not an easy journey is it, but we will get there xxx

  • So sorry to hear about your husband, but wow you sound like you handle it all in your stride. I have my second FEC Tuesday morning, a little anxious but also can't wait to get this journey over. Good news this chemo is being kinder to you, how many do you have left to come? Enjoy your coffee, I am taking my son to the seafront for a walk, cuppa and meet up with a friend. Thank you for sharing. X

  • Hi Saralouise, I've chatted with people at my local MacMillan Centre whilst this has been going on, of the top of my head without thinking I just said to the lady one day 'I'm the same jenny as I was before the cancer, but I'm also very different', which, I was told was a very powerful statement, you are Sara, just different to you were before the cancer, priorties change etc x

  • It is great that you have two clear mammograms and now getting your life back. Re work, they probably just dont get it, what youve been through etc. It is ignorance on their part and they maybe feel awkward that they dont know what to say to you. Hopefully you are gettig lots of support from those around you outside work. Not sure if you have a Maggies centre nearby or other local support group that you can join...i found them a great source of support.

    You should feel proud having come through what you have... Keep positive x

  • I totally agree that going through what we have been through changes us and our out look on life. I have been off since April last year with no sick pay. It has been such a difficult time financially without having to deal with the cancer treatment both physically and emotionally. I only had a part time job but have decided I am unable to return back to it due to the type of work it is. So I have decided to take my situation and turn it into a positive by having a career change. Not sure how yet, still working on that one :-) Good luck in your journey xx

  • Do you have The Haven anywhere near you??? I have found them great with the therapies they offer - I can recommend Emotional Freedom Therapy. McMillan offer counselling or one-to-one chats which can be helpful. I hope things improve for you, this can be a very lonely journey xxxxx

  • Hi Jenny I too work in a small unit with only ever 2 of us on duty at anyone time (midwife in neonatal unit) so we have to work well together and be mind readers at times! I was off for 4 months and have just returned on a 'phased' return doing just 1 or 2 split shifts a week. I know this is to cushion me but the lack of continuity makes it harder. My colleagues have all been wonderful and very supportive throughout and made a rota to take me to my treatments and appointments if my daughter wasn't available which was great. I'm finding now that they're being a bit over protective of me at the moment and will take on the heavier tasks to save me or go without a break to make sure I get one. As lovely as that is and I know I sound ungrateful, it's like being killed by kindness and it's not letting me move on as quick as I'd like. I'm sure this will resolve itself as time goes by and they get used to me being around again. One thing I have decided having seen the May off duty when I am back up to my full time hours, if I find it too much and too tiring (we work 12 hour shifts in heat of up to 30 deg), is that I will cut my hours down and go part time. You look at life differently when you've been on a journey like this and mine was a relatively simple one. Life is too short to waste and I want to enjoy my time and do things I probably wouldn't have previously. I hope things work out for you Jenny it must be very lonely at work for you. In my life experience 3 is always a difficult number. I wish you well, great news on the mammograms x

  • Hi I think you can phone to see if there is just anyone to chat to about returning to work as it's another stage of the breast cancer journey that we are all on x

  • Some people will not know how to deal with you post diagnosis because of their own fears and frailties. Forgive them (I have) but don't forget. Your friends are the ones who stuck by you and gave you encouragement and support when you really needed it. The others are superfluous and you don't need to be nice to them. It's hard to be 'at work' after cancer as so much will have changed for you. Unless you truly love your job you may consider a change, or maybe go self employed? Time to please yourself now! Good Luck and hugs. xx

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