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My new relationship with Newcastle RVI

by MammaMia

Reflections on Breast Cancer Diagnosis and treatment
01 November 2015 at 18:46

Radiotherapy: Ouch!!

Time for an update on my radiotherapy experience....

Last week was my first full week - Monday to Friday - of radiotherapy sessions. Not surprisingly, as the week went on, my right breast became pinker and hotter, however, I remained well and not too concerned.

Friday, I feel, saw me hit the wall. Whilst getting changed into my gown, I noticed for the first time that my bra had left a slight indentation on the front of my right breast. Left breast was unaffected. I mentioned this to the radiographers who checked my skin, mentioned that I may need a larger bra, then recommended that I wear loose clothes and don't wear a bra at all. I must have looked horrified at this as they then suggested that I remove my bra when I get back home each day. This sounded more like it. The thought of going bra-less all day, every day, was not very appealing, even if it would do me good. My 'ample bosom' is not designed for bobbing about all over the place, never mind the effect that the cold weather would have on my nipples!!

It had also been suggested a couple of times that I keep my QV cream in the fridge, which may help alleviate the soreness, so I started to do that on Friday. It does help and is such a relief when it touches my skin......

Friday afternoon also saw my first attack of extreme tiredness. After having our usual coffee and chat at Maggie's after my treatment, as soon as we got into the car exhaustion hit me. We needed to do our weekly grocery shopping at Sainsbury's so, following a break for lunch, we hit the aisles. I was walking around like a zombie and realised later that evening that I had forgotten quite a few items that I had added to my list - I didn't even look at my list that day! When we got home, I went straight to be and re-charged my batteries. So this is what an energy dip felt like? OK, now I know!

Since then I have been taking a regular afternoon siesta. Why not? It seems to do the trick and makes sense to rest when our body tells us to.

On a lighter note, I have been keeping a list of all the music played during my daily treatment sessions. The most appropriate this week was a medley by Elton John, the first song I heard one day was 'I'm Still Standing'! Quite appropriate I thought!

Maggie's continues to be a refuge following my treatment and I am starting to make friends and am becoming part of the furniture. I'm going to miss the place once my treatment ends.

So, this coming week sees my first Clinic Review following my treatment on Tuesday. Also, at Maggie's on Thursday afternoon I'm taking part in a 'Colours' workshop. Looking forward to that, especially as one of my new friends, Christine is taking part too. I'll write a report on the session afterwards.

Onward and upwards. I know that the coming days are going to be painful and that the tiredness could well increase, but this is just a phase I am going through and it will pass. On the plus side, I am meeting so may wonderful people and really feel that this entire episode has enriched my life. Strange what life has in store for us isn't it? Just make the most of whatever life throws your way. Learn from it and move on....

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