Said the doctor when I shared that I had more pain during week 4 of the treatment cycle.

You should’ve seen my face.

“It shouldn’t be possible, the medication stays in the body, you shouldn’t see that drastic shift during week four.”

Week four is when Pablo takes a vacation and Lolaz stares at me silently sneaking a few blows from behind.

WELL… Maybe I am closer to my body and can feel the shifts, I answered.

OR people just don’t tell the doctor because they feel it is normal to feel like that and it’s JUST the side effects.

I am a bit tired of having people telling that how I feel “SHOULDN’T” feel this or that way.

Since I am not just a complainer waiting for the doctor to give me all the answers and SAVE me from cancer doom, I researched a bit. It seems that I fall in the 0.5 to 1% of women who have some very rare side effects associated with hormonal treatments.

In my life, everything that had to do with hormones gave me hell. The Pill when I was younger made me severely sick. The doctors were like, but it’s just micrograms of hormones, you shouldn’t feel it. You will adjust.

Never adjusted… got three babies and then had a copper IUD. All was marvellous under the sun.

Then I had an hormonal IUD. It made me severely sick every month during the first year, and mildly sick for 5 years.

The doctor said… it’s micrograms of hormones you shouldn’t feel it. Your body will adjust. I never “adjusted”.

I got hormonal breast cancer.

Hum… I have pondered this one for a while. Of course, NO doctor will ever make the correlation with my messed up endocrinal system and the hormonal IUD, even though some studies showed (inconclusive) higher reports of breast-cancer while other cancer decreased with the use of hormonal IUDs. Inconclusive because there may have been other factors to consider that weren’t studied at the same time.

Still, I pondered the whole thing.

Now, I am on hormone blockers. Thank you, it keeps the cancer in check… but I have reactions.

I know my body. If I say that there is something not quite right… please don’t dismiss me. Especially when hormones are involved.

So, this time I said to the doctor… I think it’s a reaction to Lolaz, not Pablo. I may have a strong reaction to Lolaz, but it is hidden underneath Pablo and when Pablo’s on vacation, Lolaz can steal the show. Lolaz is the hormone blocker.

You should’ve seen her face. I saw the light bulb tilt for a second.

I already made the change and got another brand of Lolaz that has milder side-effects. I told the doctor. She agreed with me and we’ll see after a few months if I “adjust”. I can already feel the difference.

I haven’t talked much about advocating for yourself when your health is at stakes, but this is another example for me that standing for myself is one of the biggest lesson I learned through dealing with cancer.

I shut up when the doctors tried to convince me that “it shouldn’t be that way”, without offering alternatives.

My current doctor is marvellous. She is present and listens, and sometimes she is human. After a year of Pablo and Lolaz I should’ve had adjusted.

May I object? Let’s listen together. She is very happy that the treatment works, so she wants me to rejoice and focus on the positive. ME TOO. I rejoice every day. And still, I may choose to live 3 years without side effects than 10 years being half of myself, tired, numbed, and in pain. It is not worth it.

My body. My life. I am not a guinea pig.

Yes, I have more energy. Yes, Happy Hour is a bit more longer. YES! I feel more vibrant has the weeks go by.

It came with listening deeply to the shifts in my body and making the changes that were required. It came with telling the doctor the truth whether she is annoyed or not by the reports of my condition.

The doctor is not your buddy with whom you go for drinks after work. The doctor is your partner. If you don’t do your job of knowing your body, and speak up about what’s going on, they can’t do their job. Make them listen.

I have been dancing. I have been happy. I have looked at life and made a pact to enjoy all the hours, including the hours with Pablo and Lolaz. On some level they are my partners to VIBRANT HEALTH.

I have said yes to that treatment knowing that I would have to have life, and treatment dance together and find my center through it all.

It’s been a year now.

Happy hour has expanded to Happy hourSSSS. Thank you!

It’s still worth it.

With great respect!

A.

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