I’m a Narcoleptic Napper

I’ve been on Letrozole now for about two months. You may recall from my prior post that Letrozole is an aromatase inhibitor. Without going into the science behind why I need to take it, let’s just say taking it reduces the chances of breast cancer recurrence and metastases. If you’re wondering what the difference is, according to breast cancer.org, a recurrence happens when breast cancer reappears in the same or opposite breast or chest wall. Metastasis is when breast cancer cells spread to another part of the body through the blood stream or lymphatic system. Metastatic breast cancer can be recurrent breast cancer if the original cancer has come back and spread to another part of the body. But most doctors use the term “locally recurrent” to describe breast cancer that has come back in the same breast/chest wall and “metastatic” to describe breast cancer that has spread to or come back in another part of the body. But I digress. Since I’ve been on Letrozole my joints have been stiff and sore, but I can deal with that. What is becoming a huge problem for me is fatigue. I don’t recall feeling this tired on Tamoxifen (what I took prior to Letrozole). It’s like I have narcolepsy you guys. I fall asleep so fast, it’s like I hear fingers snap and I’m out, like hypnosis or something. All I want to do is nap.  Here’s me at work.I know exercise is supposed to help boost energy and metabolism but I barely have have energy to walk around the block. So I need energy to get more energy. It’s like I need to put the cart before the horse, or maybe I’m the horse and cart has to pull me. I’m thinking of calling my oncologist about this but how much do you want to bet he tells me to exercise? My diet has been better but not consistent. Easter was a ten day long sugar extravaganza. The other day I was looking in the pantry for something to narf and I noticed someone had turned my Medifast shaker into a cat food scooper. I’m sure there’s some sort of symbolism there. On a more positive note I found an awesome page on Facebook called cleanfoodcrush with this chick named Rachel who posts simple clean eating recipes. They can be as easy or as complicated as you want. I’ve been slowly trying some of her recipes and they are tasty, simple and healthy. I totally recommend checking her out.

Unfortunately my foobs are in a holding pattern. I still need that little bit of extra skin removed on the right side and my 3D nipple tattoos after that. I was hoping to accomplish both of these items by the end of the year but it’s not looking promising. The Boob Whisperer is STILL not contracted with my insurance company (which is the only health insurer in Maricopa County offering an individual health plan). But I’m 95% done and I’m still very blessed and pleased with what I have. I was just hoping to be done with it once and for all and be able to move forward.

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It’s My Two Year Cancerversary but I Don’t Need Cotton or China (dinnerware not the country)

Two years ago today I got “that” call. The “you have breast cancer” call. It was surreal because one part of my brain was saying “whoops sorry big mistake, it’s not you.” Another part heard “oh my God, you are dying.” I thanked the radiologist and was about to hang up when she asked if I wanted to know what kind it was. Kind? There are different kinds? I wrote it down-invasive lobular carcinoma. I’d no idea yet what that means exactly but soon I would know more than I ever thought to know about breast cancer.

It happened on a Wednesday, my day off, and I’d been waiting for it. I don’t know how I managed to power through that day, or even that week. I was home alone, twelve year old daughter at school, husband off the grid in Nepal and he wouldn’t be home until Sunday. No family to speak of besides in-laws who live in the Czech Republic and out of state cousins who I hadn’t spoken to in years, other than on FB. I e-mailed a couple of close friends who offered to drop everything to be with me, but I needed to be alone – with no distractions, to grieve the life I knew and face this seemingly impossible challenge in front of me. I cried and prayed over the next few weeks, asking God to spare me if only for my young daughter who would have no female family member to guide her into adulthood. Tomas is an amazing father, but the thought of my baby girl losing her mommy (she’s 14 now and still calls me mommy), was absolutely the most gut-wrenching moment of my life.

I admit after two years, five surgical procedures, four rounds of chemotherapy and thirty-three radiation treatments I’m still terrified, but I have the gift of knowing the magnitude of my strength is greater than I ever imagined. And like so many of my brave pink sisters, I’m STILL kicking ass and taking names. Do you hear that asshole Cancer?!

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Scanxiety

There is a LOT of this going around, so let’s not let it take over ❤

Breast Cancer Sisters

By Kelly Nemecek

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Many fellow breast cancer survivors, myself included, freak out about scans. This is actually a thing we call scanxiety. It’s the anxiety you feel while waiting for a scan, during the scan, and waiting for the results of the scan. Before I go any further I want to point out that not everyone needs the same scans and while certain scans are appropriate for one patient, they may not be appropriate for another. Even among breast cancer patients with the same diagnosis, there may be factors that warrant a different approach to imaging studies. Having scans is a double edged sword-you want the scan for your peace of mind but in the meantime you know you’re going to get all nerve wracked and distressed.

I remember the PET scan I had after my bilateral mastectomy. I asked the technician when I might receive the results, and she…

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