When I was first diagnosed with IT, the first emotion I felt was shock followed by lots of crying and obviously the ‘why me?’ question. I know it’s a cliché, but I did think that IT was definitely something that happened to other people, but when the unbelievable occurred and I found myself in that situation, lots of phrases like ‘that’s unfair’, ‘what have I done to deserve this?’, ‘I shouldn’t have drunk all that wine’, ‘there are far more unhealthy people out there who don’t get IT!’ and other negative thoughts arose.
After the shock, came the rollercoaster of appointments, tests, biopsies and scans which actually did help as there was no time to dwell on IT. I’m sure most people who are diagnosed with IT would agree that the months of treatment following are actually a blur and it’s only when you reflect on that time that you realise the extent of what you have been through.
I’m now at that stage where I don’t think about IT all the time, only when I have an appointment, when it suddenly pops into my mind for no apparent reason or when I am conscious of the aches and pains caused by my medication. Even now, I still can’t believe that I had IT. I feel very lucky in that my body hasn’t changed much at all as I didn’t need a mastectomy so when I look in the mirror, it’s physically still me. The only difference is my hair which is now white/grey and very short, but apparently that is very on trend at the moment so I don’t mind that at all!
The ‘why me?’ question has now faded and has been replaced with extreme gratitude for the superb medical treatment and care I received and for all the support and love I have had from my fantastic family and friends.
This piece was originally posted on Jackie’s own blog here: http://lifeafterbreastcancer.co.uk/