My oncologist likes to say that, for women in my situation, treating Stage 4 breast cancer is like treating diabetes (or any other chronic illness). It must be taken seriously and treated but it can be managed and, when one responds well, the progression can be slowed or even stopped for long periods.
This is good to hear, given the alternative. And it’s infinitely more hopeful than the initial prognosis when my cancer first returned.
But chronic illness brings its own set of challenges. While I am happy to be going for treatment only once a month, in some ways this makes it harder to face treatment. I certainly resent it more. And long term chemotherapy does take its physical toll. But it is the emotional grind that is perhaps the most debilitating.
I wrote this post for MyBreastCancerNetwork.Com and you can follow the link to read the rest of it.