ITW n°11: Julie K fighter.
After a few weeks of well-deserved "break", I'm picking up the thread again, and we're starting this "back to school" with the interview with the sparkling Julie (Breast K at 34), or as she puts it so well with so much humor: “a cancer patient who rocks”!!
Thank you Julie for sharing your story :)
From Friday I will give you new tips, patience.... ;)
Let's get started:
Who are you ?First name: JULIE Age: 36 Profession: MEDICAL DELEGATE Where do you live: NANTES Mom of Sarah 8 years old and Baptiste 4 years old
Can you summarize your K fighter story for us ?
K breast with 5 cm tumor , I had a lump on the side of the right breast. According to my attending physician, nothing alarming, but a control echo, no worries on my radiologist's side either.... It was a doctor friend who referred me to my gynecologist. The gynecologist asked me to do a biopsy but for him it was a cyst.
In short, December 6, 2013 announced the K , I might as well tell you the balls, the descent the shock. He therefore told me the therapeutic protocol that was going to be put in place...
What treatment did you have?
3 FEC 100/3TAXOTERE
45 SESSIONS I BELIEVE
Removal of the breast because at the end of the 3rd session there were still some calcifications, I remained hospitalized for 3 days, my surgeon performed the padding, this avoids staying too long in the hospital and no drains which are in the way.
16 SESSIONS of herceptin
On tamoxifen for 1 monthWhat tips directly related to K do you want to share (your feeling with the doctor, your good plans for organizing treatment, anything that seems useful to you ;))? 1/ chemo:
The day before my chemo , I was very focused, like in a race. The first one I was completely excited (yes I'm weird as a girl, I was told about the helmet I had lots of different opinions, but I wore it, I timed it to change every 20 minutes, the ideas told me that my hair was going to fall out anyway but it held on, they were hallucinating, before each session I washed my hair without drying it and ate light, yes afterwards I was tired but it was okay, smeared but fine.
I found that under taxotere it was more complicated, more painful because of the muscle pain, it took me longer to recover...
For my tips nothing special, just wash my hair without drying it but be careful of the risk of psoriasis!!!!2 / radiotherapy:
For the radiotherapy team it was less sympathetic, I found that it was more of an assembly line.3/ hospital: nurse / doc / caregiver contact
In Nantes, I was followed at the René Gauducheau center , it is really great, the medical team was really great, the ide were always attentive, both those who took care of me in chemo and those in surgery . In my center, there is an onco esthetician Mado, who made me laugh a lot, I went to the makeup sessions, I looked at all the docs, not losing all my hair my life seemed "normal" to me.4/ alternative medicine, if you have done:
I went to see an acupuncturist and a little bone-setter grandpa without a good time, I wanted to see a fire cutter but caught up in my radiotherapy sessions I didn't find the time, I also saw a psychologist.What practical tips can you advise us? 1/ beauty:
I used the missilyn brand varnish (easy to find in pharma) beautiful colors and easy to apply, for the creams, I had fun in drugstores, very nourishing things like La Roche Posay Nutritic , otherwise Nuxe top and very quenching, serums also from the ixxi brand, a good makeup remover with Bioderma micellar water. For my hair I really took very gentle shampoo, food supplements from the effluvium brand (top) for the nails too. For my eyelashes it's the T alika brand, it's expensive but less than the 2ooeuro one. There I brush my eyelashes and eyebrows with castor oil with the brush of an old mascara, for the scar nothing special Cicalfate from Avene.2/ Look: very important the look not to let go , usual outfits, chic tunic jeans in all circumstances. 3/ Sport / food:
I joined the gym, I did aquabiking, it felt good, I was in pain but it was okay, when I had my operation it was complicated, I had difficulty undressing and went into the swimming pool.My diet is rather varied but no particular restrictions. 4/ chemo:
By feeling if you want to have visitors during your sessions say yes, bringing books is good and above all being very focused, doing session countdowns is less time consuming ;)What are the nugget phrases that someone said to you during K that could have been avoided?
1) My pizza chef when going to collect my pizzas: “didn’t you comb your hair this morning”?
2) a mother at school not knowing: “Hey, you look bad, maybe you should take magnesium.
3) “So you had your chest done” (it’s true that the prosthesis is great, I feel like I’m 20 years old…..)How did your loved ones support you? And what advice could you give to loved ones who accompany a K fighter? My loved ones literally carried me , if I was strong and managed to stay the course like that, it's thanks to them, my children Sarah 8 years old & Baptiste 4 years old. Advice I could give: listen to others What would be the useful (internet) links that helped you during K? Working in the medical field, I got all my information from my doctor friends, I didn't want to go on the internet, it was too murky, too hard... What has the K changed in your life...?
My K has changed me, that's for sure, I have the impression of having more confidence in myself, of having grown up, matured, I'm trying to take a step back but it's complicated in my professional life, I am commercial
We break down from time to time, I'm writing a book, I stayed as I am and I'm proud of myself. My priorities are to take better care of myself!Free field ;)
Yes, learning at 34 that you have a K is hard, but by taming the beast you get there more easily. I accepted the illness, it was me who was in control, not her, by staying the course and moving forward step by step we get there, now I have just finished my herceptin. I recently broke down with too much emotion, I think.... I'm entering the reconstruction phase. I got a little tattoo in November to mark the occasion!--------- Thank you again Julie for sharing your K & your valuable tips. Lots of sweet positive thoughts See you soon Charlotte <:en> ITW # 11: Julie K-fighter Or as she says: “ AN AWESOME K-FIGHTER ” ;) Hello,
After a well-deserved few weeks break, I pick up the thread of our discussion and we start with the interview of Julie, an effervescent woman, (breast cancer at 34 years old), or she perfectly and humorously says: “an awesome K -fighter”!!
Thank you Julie for sharing your experience :)
Who are you?
First name: JULIE
Profession: REPRESENTATIVE PHARMACEUTICAL
Where do you live?: NANTES
Mum of Sarah 8 years old and Baptiste 4 years old.
Can you sum up your experience of K-fighter?
Breast cancer with a 5cm tumor. I had swelling on the side of my right breast. According to my doctor, nothing to worry yet a controlled ultrasound. Same attitude with my radiologist…It is one of my friends, a doctor, who suggested me to consult my gynecologist who requested a biopsy while thinking of a cyst.
In short, on December 6, 2013, K news. Let's just say pissed off and severely shocked. My doctor then explained to me about the therapeutic protocol to be set up…
Which treatments did you receive?
3 FEC 100/3TAXOTERE
45 SESSIONS I think
Breast ablation as after the third session, there were still calcifications. I stayed in hospital 3 days and my surgeon XXXX who avoids a long hospitalization and surgical drains.
16 Herceptin SESSIONS
Under Tamoxifen since 1 month
Which K-related tips do you want to share (good treatment organization plans, useful advises;))?
The days before chemo, I was very focused, as before a competition. The first time, I was completely excited (I know it's odd), I had heard very different opinions about the helmet but I put it. I was timing to change every 20 minutes, The nurses were telling me that my hair would fall anyway but they didn't. The nurses were not believing it. Before every session I was washing my hair without drying them and I was having a light meal. Afterwards, I was stoned and nauseous yet fine.
I had the feeling that under Taxotere, it was more complicated and difficult due to muscular pains. It took me more time to recover…
As tips, nothing special, just to wash my hair without drying them yet be aware of psoriasis !!!!
With the radiotherapy team, I would say relations were less friendly, I had the feeling it was more assembly line-style.
3/ hospital: contact with nurses/doctors/auxiliaries
I was treated at Center RenéGauducheau in Nantes, the hospital is really great, the medical team was fantastic, the nurses always attentive in both chemo and surgery departments. In this hospital, there is an onco-beauty therapist, Mado, who made me laugh a lot; I attended all make-up sessions, viewed all documentations and tutorials without loosing all my hair, my life looked 'normal' to me.
4/ alternative medicines?:
I went to see an acupuncturist and an old healer with no more results than a pleasant time. I also wanted to see a burn healer but didn't find the time between all the radiotherapy sessions. I also consulted a psychologist.
What are your best practical tips?
I used Missilyn nail polish (easy to find in pharmacy), beautiful colors and easy to apply. I pampered myself in health and beauty shops, nourishing creams such as La Roche Posay Nutritic or Nuxe, top and thirst-quenching, Serums also, from Ixxi brand, a good remover with Eau micellaire de Bioderma. For my hair, I used only very gentle shampoos and I took food supplements (Effluvium) also for my nails. For eyelashes, Talika products are expensive yet more affordable than some at 200 euros. At the moment, I use castor oil for my eyelashes and eyebrows (I apply it with an old mascara brush). For the scar, nothing special, I use Cicalfate from Avene.
Super important! Don’t let yourself go!! Continue to dress as usual with jeans and blouses, chic whatever the circumstances.
3/ sport + food:
I joined a fitness center, practiced aquabiking; it did me good, it was painful yet it did me good. When I had surgery it was complicated, I found it difficult to undress and to enter the pool.
My diet is well-balanced and I had no particular restriction.
Spontaneously, if you wish to have guests during your sessions, say yes. Plan some books, it can help, and in particular stay focused. Count sessions down, it seems less long ;)
What are the top sentences you were told during the K and that could have been avoided?
1) The pizzaiolo when picking up my pizzas: 'you didn't do your hair this morning?'
2) A mum at school (who didn't know): 'oh you look bad today, you should perhaps take some magnesium.'
3) 'Wow, you had breast surgery': it is true that prosthesis are great, I feel like being 20…
How did your close friends and relatives care for you? What would be your advice to close friends and relatives of a K-fighter?
My close ones literally carried me. If I kept being strong and holding my course this way, it is thanks to them and to my kids Sarah 8 years old and Baptiste 4 years old.
Advise I could give: listening to the other.
Which web links helped you?
Working in a medical environment, I had all information needed by my friends who are doctors, I didn't want to surf the web, it was too shady, too difficult…
What did the K change in your life?
My K changed me, for sure. I have the feeling I am now more self-confident, that I grew up, that I am more mature. I try to put things in perspective but it is complicated as in my professional life I am a pharmacological representative.
I break down some times, I am writing a book, I stayed as I was and am, and I am proud of myself. My priorities are to take more care of myself!
Free thoughts ;)
Yes definitely hearing at 34 that you have a K is hard but taming the beast you overcome more easily. I accepted the disease, I was the one in control, not her. Keeping your course and going step by step, you overcome. I just finished my Herceptin treatment. I broke down recently, an outpouring of emotions I think…Now is the phase of reconstruction. I offered myself a small tattoo in November to acknowledge the occasion.
Thank you again Julie for having shared your K experience and your precious tips.
Lots of gentle and positive thoughts,
See you soon