I came through the operation well, and by removing the breast, I didn't need any other treatment - lucky me! It amazes me how people adjust to travelling long distances for ongoing treatment. We live seven hours from Brisbane on a cattle property. It wasn't until I arrived home, I realised how alone I was. When pain hit there was no one to ask questions. I have a great GP an hour from home, however, GPs are always busy and I couldn't ring just because I felt down. My drain had to be removed about 10 days after coming home. The young relieving doctor had never removed a drain before - poor fellow - he was so embarrassed!
Depression and lack of confidence was terrible, I had never experienced these feelings before. I remember my husband wanting to get back into the paddock and me sitting there crying like a baby. Two of my sons just couldn't understand, because mum was always an active, outdoors, busy person this mum they didn't know. The other son continuously told me I had not looked after myself (we grow organic beef and I grow most of our vegetables). My husband, although caring, will never admit that my body just turned him off. We have not been intimate since the operation and I feel empty and sad that this has happened.
I have become active in all sorts of volunteer work within a small community taking on roles that before cancer, I would never have considered. I sit on community planning organizations, aged support and generally keep my life full. I work with my husband on the property, am 'grandma' to 5 beautiful granddaughters, help my sons on their properties, and generally get on with life. I have much more compassion, people young and old rely on me for lots of support and there is never enough time in a day to complete my goals.
I still worry about breast cancer and would love to have the other one removed to reduce the risk. However, being so far away from professional people, I can't seem to find the right person to talk through my concerns or plans for this to happen. I have tried to talk to the Clinic, however, they aren't really the people to see, I tried to talk to the surgeon, and he thinks I am a bit over the top. Sometimes I feel desperate and still very alone.