Be the Boss Over Cancer

by Elizabeth B. on January 4, 2012
I was Diagnosed with:
Stage IIB Breast Cancer
Date of Diagnosis:
October 13, 2009
Employment Status:
Full Time
Type and Description of Treatments:
Breast cancer, stage IIB. Tumor was 2.8 cm. Had a lumpectomy, followed by 4 cycles of chemo, then 35 days of radiation. Took 2 months FMLA when I was having chemo. Worked through radiation. Also had ovaries and fallopian tubes taken out, on Femara.
How do you feel today?

Okay, a bit depressed.

Since the diagnosis, what has changed in your life?

I had depression before my diagnosis, and it got worse having cancer. I have no estrogen in my body, so I am very depressed. Also, since cancer, I have been treated really badly at work.

What is going well for you right now?

Not sure

What is not going well for you right now?

Not sure

What has been the most challenging thing about having cancer?

Pacing myself through the day, dealing with people not caring about my physical limitations due to chemo - lymphodema, osteopenia, femara joint pain.

When difficulties overwhelm you, where do you go for support?

Just go to sleep.

How have your long-term goals or life goals changed since diagnosis?

I have no long-term goals. I live on a daily basis.

What is your work arrangement right now? What are your hours?

Work full time.

Since the diagnosis, what has changed in your work life?

People not caring about my limitations. Expecting a normal person, so I put on a facade.

What has helped you continue to work the most?

My husband being unemployed has pushed me to work.

What advice do you have for others trying to work through treatment?

Go through life on a daily basis.

How have you dealt with any side effects of treatment?

Take it one day at a time.

If "today's you" could give advice to "day-of-diagnosis you," what would you say?

Just concentrate on 'today'. Pace yourself. Take care of yourself, no-one else will.