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Living Well beyond Breast Cancer: A Survivor's Guide for When Treatment Ends and the Rest of Your Life Beginsby Marisa Weiss
Synopses & Reviews
Over, Not Over
I never forget. Cancer has become part of my consciousness, part of my society. With every cancer death, my heart turns over. I'm always amazed at how other people take their lives for granted, as if they'll live forever.
I became assertive, someone I'd never been. I had a new voice. I said whatever I felt, like a cranky old lady. I knew nobody would stop me. I took my husband to an auction, my first post-treatment outing; I bought a few things, and he asked, What areyou going to do with this junk? I exploded--I just couldn't help myself: You should be thanking God I'm interested in something again
Right after treatment I felt very old, and lost, like I was looking into my grave. I got help, and it took a while, but I came around to feeling reborn, reinvented.
First Things First
It's over. Treatment, that is. You've survived the initial ordeal. Now what? No one hands you an instruction manual as you go from under treatment to beyond treatment. From Geralyn Lucas' book Why I Wore Lipstick:
I make a list of everything I want to do. Should I quit my job, leave my husband, travel the world? I decide that maybe the most courageous thing I can do is to try to return to my regular life, with the knowledge that there is nothing regular about it. Since everything has changed, how could we remain the same?
Maybe it's been two weeks, maybe two years, maybe twenty. But no matter how little or how much time has passed, the breast cancer experience is never completely over. Active issues, leftover concerns, and reminders can dog you every day or pop up just once in a while.
When it's all over, just when you think you should be celebrating this huge accomplishment, you may feel worse than you did during treatment. How confusing and disorienting. It starts to make sense when you realize that all parts of your life have beentouched by the breast cancer experience. It may have taken over your life: bills, taxes, job, vacation, housework, and even children were put on hold.
Now, with the end of treatment, you have to adjust back to normal. But is that really possible? The fact is, life changes after breast cancer treatment. Normal will never look and feel exactly the same. The only thing you can do is to go forward with therest of your life, one step at a time. You have to find and create your new normal. Many of you speak of how changed you are, almost renewed. This is my hope for each of you as you read my book: a chance to renew your life, one that brings you comfort, meaning, joy, fun, and hope.
Throughout this book, I will help you understand the challenges and identify the solutions to help you live well beyond breast cancer. We'll start by looking at the issues you'll begin facing immediately after treatment.
You can cope with this new life. Countless women have done it and are doing it. When you feel as wobbly inside as a new toddler or as stiff and creaky as a little old lady, draw strength from these other survivors. They understand that your cheery frontis covering up the vulnerable, exhausted you. And unlike ma
What do I do now? Why am I still so tired? Am I really cured? How do I reduce my risk of recurrence? Is it safe for me to get pregnant? How do I get rid of the hot flashes so I can sleep?
This fully revised and updated second edition contains crucial information about these issues and more—including the revolutionary medical advances in follow-up testing, ongoing treatments, and recovery. With answers for everything from how to deal with hair loss and weight gain to finding online support groups and understanding healthy foods and supplements, Living Well Beyond Breast Cancer contains a greater depth and breadth of information in its enhanced chapters—plus all-new chapters that cover current treatment options and preventative tips for those at high risk for developing breast cancer.
• Tests: Peer, Poke, and Prod
• After Mastectomy: Re-creating a Breast with or Without Surgery
• Intimacy, Sex, and Your Love Life: Relieving Discomfort and Increasing Libido
• A Child in Your Future: Fertility, Pregnancy, and Adoption
• Reducing Your Risk: Living Well
• Pre-Survivors: Risks and Prevention
• Thinking and Remembering: Clearing the Fog and Sharpening Your Mind
• Bone Health: Weakness Explained and Strengthening Exercises
• Sleep: Restoration and Renewal
With this book as your guide, you’ll have the tools not just to live beyond breast cancer, but to live well and well beyond this challenge in your life!
Table of Contents
Treatment over, on with your life — Additional care beyond treatment — Coping with side effects of treatment — Caring for your new self — Preventing and managing recurrence.
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Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Cancer