My community rallied around me. My co-workers helped with meals, and even with Christmas. Emotional support came from on-line groups, a local support group and my family and friends. I felt very cared for but I was still having a hard time with paying rent, bills, groceries. I couldn’t; afford gravel for the nausea. It was hard to get to appointments because I can’t afford the gas, insurance or pay for parking. The Breast Cancer Support provided hep and I was so grateful. This was a huge help for me and my children and I worried a lot less.
The hardest part of it all was the loss of income. We struggled but we got by while I was working. When I had to quit working and that was tough for sure.
But, the hardest about my experience was trying to balance the fine line of being optimistic and courageous, showing my kids that you are going to beat cancer and you're not dying and being honest with them that people do die from this and it hurts. My kids are teenagers and I didn’t want their life to change because of my cancer. Sometimes I felt resentful because they seemed to take for granted that I am going to get better. Sometimes I need help too.
Although the experience was tough, I learned who my friends are. My coworkers are amazing people. I am stronger than I thought. My family loves me a lot. Chemo is not so bad. I think it has made me a better nurse I don't need long hair and boobs to feel feminine.
For anyone going through this, I’d say, accept whatever help you can get. There is a lot of support out there, it's hard to know where to start and everyone and every cancer is different. I lost my best friend. I have put my boyfriend through a lot. I have gained some new friends.