Why Me?

This question didn’t really come into my head for a few days after I was diagnosed.  Then it did. I did a lot of Googling on Breast Cancer the causes etc.etc. and this is what I came up with.   Maybe some of the things might ring a bell with some other people and they may think they could maybe change a little – who knows!   Its honest anyhow!

Genetics on my Mothers Side (Healy)

My lovely Aunty Marie had breast cancer and a mastectomy around 11 years ago actually in October – lets say she was over 60 in case she ever reads this and everyone knows her age :-)   Of course like a true Healy she came through it with flying colours and is now Cancer Clear :-)

My Uncle John seemingly (who unfortunately is no longer with us) had some lumps removed from his breast – this was sort of pushed aside as it was around 20 years ago and of course men didn’t get breast cancer.  It only came to light when my cousin Catherine did some digging on behalf of her Mam when she had it.

My Grandmother died in the early 1940s at a very young age.  It was said she died of a heart attack and this is all hearsay as it was different times and not many records were kept but maybe she had breast cancer too that went undiagnosed as what hope would you have had back then figuring out these things.

So summing the above up maybe there is a link – I really hope there is a link and then I can pinpoint it on something in particular and not blame the things below.

Smoking

Having been a smoker for many many years I was just dreading that I had brought this on myself after a lot of research it points to the fact that breast cancer is one of the things that smoking is not actually blamed on and seems to be way down the list on the reasons why people get breast cancer – this was a HUGE relief to me.

Fitness

They say that your life style can contribute to breast cancer.  This is where I was totally bad. Hate exercise the thought of going for a walk or doing any sort of exercise was just not in my mind for more than a fleeting moment.  I can honestly say that I am extremely unfit for someone my age and my parents would be fitter than me.   In fairness I did have a very promising hockey career at one stage – but of course I was the Goalie – the easy option and sure Jesus why did I need to go training as was only standing in goals and hopping over most of the balls that came my way!!   Mary Ball was not impressed with me!

Health

As for my health in a mad way I was so healthy it was unreal.   I never got sick, never been in hospital, very rarely went to the Doctors so was quite proud of the fact that someone as unfit as me seemed to be so healthy.  Went through three pregnancies never even slight morning sickness was never even a tiny big sick on any of them.   Went through a pregnancy at 41 and sailed through it again no sickness.   All three beautiful kids born as healthy as anything without any complications and I was back to health and back to normality quickly.

This sounds strange I sometimes thought to myself am I dodging something, am I just really lucky considering my fitness etc. that I am so healthy.  It was like I was persuading myself that my lifestyle was ok as sure feck it healthy as an ox.

Lifestyle

I am not someone who can sit still am always on the go – however in my own way am quite lazy love my weekends lounging in bed, reading the papers or doing whatever.  On the other hand my weeks would be manic with three kids, house to run, around 10 different jobs on the go, two companies to run etc.etc.   Not unlike most modern women these days always something to be done – never ever get a minute to myself to relax.  Never ever treat myself to anything (a hair cut every few months).  To be honest don’t really know how to relax, don’t watch much TV, would relax a little on computer and do a lot of reading before bed-time.   Even when trying to relax would be thinking shit – gotta do this, that and the other so I suppose never got any down time and don’t really have hobbies and not into sport.

Also have always been a night owl – at weekends could go to bed around 3, 4am and always have done.  Always the last to leave a party :-)    No doubt late nights as well gotta catch up with you.

Alcohol

Now lets see how honest I am.  I love a good party and a good night out, I love socializing and yes I love a few drinks.   Would I be OTT?   Sometimes yes I would be and have gone on many a fun session in me day and still do :-)    Alcohol intake maybe 2/3 bottles of wine a week not too far over the recommended intake for women but definitely over it.  Do I drink more/less than other people who knows and doesn’t make a difference anyhow!

Eating Habits

Absolutely dreadful eating habits.   Always have done and am really trying to change in the last few weeks – now I even have breakfast :-)   Hate cooking like the easy things in life like sandwiches (white bread of course), cheese, butter, chips etc.etc.    Most days would never eat breakfast, some days would be around 5pm and realise I havent eaten anything the whole day.   Vegetables (I’ve had a few!!), meat don’t eat much meat, fish maybe if out will have fish in a restaurant but not in daily diet.  Vitamins never.  Fruit only if on a diet.

Coffee

Well I suppose we all know that caffeine is not great for us – but then again what is?   Lettuce???    In a few Breast Aware ads I saw recently they have mentioned Coffee.  I LOVE coffee and can’t function without it.  Would say in last say 20 years would average around 5-8 cups a day.

Stress/Anxiety/Worry

This is one thing that I can honestly say is so NOT me – I am an extremely easy going person and really really really dont do worry!    I don’t do stress or anxiety.

However on reflection in my own mad way am quite a private person.  I have been in so many situations over the years with relationships, pressure, stress etc. that I keep so many things to myself.  Things happen in my life that are far from normal and instead of speaking about them maybe I bury them deep down inside of me like it hasnt happened.   Well not maybe I do,  I know that and I am sure that is not healthy.  Surely somewhere in my subconscious must be causing some stress somewhere?

Wow didn’t mean to write that much – just getting my own head around why I think I got Cancer – so summing it up I think its Genetics and Lifestyle really.  However with a lot of cases there is no rhyme or reason like a lot of things in life!    I like to know these sort of things and would really like to pin it down on something I think that would make me feel better about it.  I will be doing a genetics test to see if the gene is something that runs in our family.

If you got this far folks – thanks for listening!!!   Maybe its time for me to grow up and not be the Joker all the time :-)    Ah no……. :-)

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4 Responses to Why Me?

  1. nojo1 says:

    Great info! Thx Dee.
    I think my risk factors are genetics, lifestyle, stress and alcohol. I’m also a night owl, never feel I get enough sleep!
    On the plus side, quit the smokes back in ’05, cut back on caffeine a few yrs ago when I started getting heart palpitations, ride my bike 2-3 times a week (don’t like gyms) and get back on Weight Watchers whenever I feel I’ve gained weight : )
    Though you’re right, you just never know. So I make sure to get my ladies plumbing exam every year, ‘cos if there’s any cancer there it’s gonna get the shite kicked out of it!!
    xoxo

  2. Anon says:

    Read up on cancer causes a few years ago and there is one train of thought that says it is directly related to our emotions. The more we ignore things that cause an emotional upheaval the more likely we are to get cancer, unless we actually DO deal with them. Not sure how I feel about that, ‘cos like you I don’t like dealing with things, I prefer to just bury them too.