ITW n°68: Jacqueline - K breast fighter.
today Jacqueline, 72 years old, with insatiable curiosity, and passionate about sharing it, tells us about her fight against Breast K, from which she has been in remission for 15 years!!! And of course gives us a thousand tips and valuable links to discover.
Jacqueline is now retired, but her energy has pushed her to get involved for years in a “Choix Vital” support group, which she runs, as its name suggests, with great vitality, fervor and determination.
Let's get started:
Who are you ?
First name: Jacqueline
Age: 72 years old
Profession: retired + responsible for communications and development of the “Choix Vital” support group
Where do you live: Paris/Levallois
Why do you agree to share your story today?
A matchmaker at heart, I share my story in a way to show that in illness you should not stay alone.
Very curious by nature, I seek to inform myself and share my findings with my classmates.
What are your qualities (in a few words)?
spontaneous, with an open spirit, common sense dominates.
What are your passions (in a few words)?
A passion: searching for information, documentation and “making it known”
What K (what cancer - grade if you wish / stage ditto):
breast cancer in 1998 following a routine mammogram
When was it discovered? How old were you ?
in 98, so I had…..? 54 years old
Under what circumstances was it discovered?
following a routine mammogram
If you are currently undergoing treatment, or in remission (for how long?)
I have been in remission since 2001 but I continue lymphatic drainage due to lymphodoema
Can you summarize your (K fighter) story for us?
I am originally from the Dordogne but with Alsatian origins on my mother's side.
I arrived in Paris in 1963 but I lived a little in California where I met "Barretta", a pioneer of Ericksonian hypnosis.
I also had living experience in New York.
After radiotherapy, as I was very curious, I looked for all the information on the internet on what we call today supportive care and in particular "a support group".
I started as a simple member and then became one of the pillars of the “Choix Vital” association and responsible for Communication/Development.
What treatment did you have?
6 or 8 weeks I don't remember exactly
operation if you have had one (how long were you hospitalized):
lumpectomy and 8 days of hospitalization
What tips directly related to K do you want to share (your feeling with your doctor, your good plans for organizing treatment, everything that concerns you?
seems useful ;))?
I was lucky enough to come across a somewhat unusual surgeon, who took the time to explain everything to me.
I keep in memory a key sentence: before arriving in Monceau: "you will write down all your questions so that we can sweep away anything that causes problems."
When I hear my classmates talk about what they experienced after the diagnosis, I tell myself that I was extremely lucky.
1/ hospital: (e.g. contact with nurses / doc / caregivers):
I was lucky enough to have a visit from my surgeon every morning or evening following his consultations, so the worry was reduced to a minimum.
2/ “parallel” medicine, if you have done it (what disciplines, what were their benefits):
I didn't draw on other disciplines at the time. If it were today I can say that I would have liked to have acupuncture, auriculotherapy, massages, wellness treatments, whatever.
What practical “well-being/beauty” tips can you advise us?
1/ beauty: your essential products (e.g.: creams, varnishes, scars, oils, etc.)
For beauty products I happily recommend Avène and “La Roche Posay” products.
2/ look, (e.g. your favorite chemo, hospital, every day look to feel good):
I would like to recommend a fun pajama jacket that opens in the front and is long enough with a pocket to put the drain bottle in.
3/ daily (e.g. sport, food & co, meditation, reading, etc.)
During my treatment I didn't stop working, I continued to act as if everything was normal. I was going to my radiotherapy session in the evening just before going home.
How did your loved ones support you?
My family being far away, no one followed me except by telephone. On the other hand, a friend in my building had been there before, her company was very useful to me
And what advice could you give to the loved ones who accompany
a K Fighter?
Simply be present and talk normally about everything, everyday life, what's happening, TV, cinema, politics, whatever at the moment isn't great.
Do you find out about K on the internet?
I constantly provide information to the doctors who run my support group.
If so, does it make you feel good?
I am a fan of everything that is not expressed, is printed, so I applied and continue to apply this formula in my daily life.
If so, what would be the useful (internet) links that helped you during K?
at the time I didn't have much to eat
What has the K changed in your life...?
(for example: your vision of the world, your priorities, your essentials, refocusing those around you, in your work, your philosophy..?)
I experienced it as a simple illness, now I am working to help my comrades to free their speech.
Free field ;)
tell us what you want (which might not be in my questions):
As I am a fan of the health benefits of writing, I recommend the site
my Canadian friend Anne-Marie Jobin, art therapist, who became famous with her “creative journal”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jxt8XCOyhEU
I also recommend seeing the site of Laurence Bosi 's doctors of imagination!
As well as: Colors of Life workshop by Valérie B arrois
I would also like that when a person arrives at the Clinic or the hospital we could offer them a small notebook which could allow them to make their story board during their hospitalization, possibly some pencils for drawing (today the coloring books bloom);
Maybe you could make us a new kit soon????? (charlotte: I'll think about it ;)
In recent weeks I have been looking for information on “the benefits of singing”.
My latest discovery is the site of Richard Cross who we saw as a coach during the Star Academy: he is writing a book on singing and health. We must meet very soon.
To illustrate these last wishes, I would like to introduce you to the site of Margot Phaneuf, our top Canadian nurse. His articles on:
Here is my big one, a little shortened what I would like to communicate.
Many thanks Jacqueline for your valuable tips and discoveries.
If like Jacqueline you want to tell your story and share your tips, go here , send me your questionnaire and 1 photo of yourself so that I can draw you ;) to: email@example.com
Many of you send me your testimonies, thank you for your precious trust, for this same reason, the broadcasts of your interviews will sometimes be broadcast in several months, but know that I keep and transmit absolutely ALL the testimonies that are sent to me, Thank you for understanding.
Please note that I do not retouch any Interview, they are completely free, it is your freedom, your story, I just add my personal touch with the illustration, they are delivered as they were sent to me ;)
NEVER GIVE UP!!