The Weird Things People say.....

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Ivona
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The Weird Things People say.....

Postby Ivona » Fri Jun 04, 2010 12:00 pm

I'm sure most of us have heard some really odd or bizarre comments from friends, relatives, co-workers, care-givers, medical professionals and others on our cancer journey. So I thought I'd start a new topic here where we can share some of these 'wingers'; hopefully to laugh, commiserate or just plain vent.

I'll start.

Yesterday (at scope time) when I informed the nurse that I have very bad veins and that they may experience difficulty getting the IV in, the nurse asked me why. I told her it was from chemo for CRC. To that she looked at me, smiled..and said...."Well how about that...and you are still here!" :shock: :shock:

OK..your turn! :lol: :lol:
dx'd Oct '08 (age 48)
T3bN2Mx
9/23 LN's
resection Nov '08
Folfox Jan '09 - March '09
Xeloda March 24/09 - July 6/09

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it's called 'the present'. "

NWgirl
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby NWgirl » Fri Jun 04, 2010 12:59 pm

OMG - and from a nurse! Okay - I can't think of anything at the moment; but the other day when they drew blood for my CT, I also warned the nurses of how hard it was to get ahold of my veins. Fortunately, one of the nurses was REALLY good. When the first one couldn't find a vein, the "pro" found one - said "it's right here - it's deep - but it's a big one - can you feel it?" - the other nurse found it - but when she felt for it after she put on that band around my arm, she lost it again and asked "the pro" to do the blood draw - which she did - quickly and efficiently. I told "the pro" that from now on she was to be known as "the vein whisperer"!
Belle - "Don't Retreat - Reload"DX 10/07 Stage III Rectal
Surgery 11/07; 27 of 38 nodes
Perm Colostomy 8/11
12/10 recurrence lungs & LN's
VATS Jan 2011
Radiation Oct 2013
Chemo for Life
2012 Colondar Model

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jmarie
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby jmarie » Fri Jun 04, 2010 1:10 pm

When I was in the hospital I was having a real hard time staying hydrated due to severe diahrea. They were giving me TPN through an IV in my arm which apparently is really tough on the veins. They had used just about every vein in my arm and they kept collapsing. In this one session 2 differant nurses had tried twice and failed so they called in the "pro". It was late at night and the rooms wasn't very well lit. My husband suggested to the "pro" that they turn on more lights so she can see better, and she claimed she didn't need any more light. Well she missed twice. I think that was the closest I have ever seen my hubby come to hitting someone. He had to leave the room he was so upset. He just calmly walked over turned on every light in the room and walked out. They got a new nurse and she hit a vein on the first try. A similar scenario happened the next day and I had a PICC line by the next night.
DX Stage IV 11/25/08
mets liver lung, kras mutant
Baby 2yrs old! I am 32yrs
Too many chemo txs to count
trying to find a clinical trial
"You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

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tytiff
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby tytiff » Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:20 pm

I don't know if this qualifies but it made me think, how can you say that? As we were sitting waiting for the dr to come out and tell us how the surgery went, Tyler's Mom and Aunt were talking about how hard it is to get old and how your body hurts. I didn't say anything but in my head I was thinking, it beats dying at 42 of cancer! I know what they were meaning, and they meant no harm, I think I am just sensitive to the fact that Ty is so young and I would give anything to be 70 with him on our porch. :cry:
Tyler: pt Tiffany: crgvr
St IV
Dx 08/09 Age 41
15/15 rnds cmplt 5FU/Oxi/Avas
End chemo: neck surg
Dad of 3, teens
NED 03/10
3 New tmrs after chemo brk
New chemo 6/10
NED 8/10
3 new tmrs
Xeloda
Rad. 01/11
Clean scan 3/11
NED 6/12 no trtmt 15 mos!
NED 2/14

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karin
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby karin » Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:50 pm

wow, these nurses are giving the profession a bad name---starting an IV in the dark.........WTH??

well Bobbi's had a couple of questionable comments thrown her way:

when she went to ER with severe abdominal pain, the doctor came in, first question out of his mouth was "are you on hospice?"......mind you this is a 41 yr old woman who was only 4 months into her diagnosis!!!! I was apalled!

last week, a friendly bartender at a restaurant Bobbi hasn't been to for a long time, saw her, waved and said "Hey! You made it!!"
We just laughed it off....I mean, what can you say....

Karin
Karin
BFF dx'd June09 w CRC & peritoneal mucinous carcinomatosis @ age 40
She beat cancer for 20 months!

janeandrea
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby janeandrea » Sun Jun 06, 2010 1:31 pm

A couple weeks ago, I was in Best Buy talking to a guy at the service desk about a problem I was having with my laptop. We had some downtime while the computer booted up (slowly, that was the problem), and for whatever reason, I had cause to tell him I was only working part time because I am on disability. He asked what for (kind of intrusive in and of itself, I guess, but I opened the door), and after I told him it was for cancer, he proceeded to tell me how every single relative he's ever had that didn't die of old age died of cancer!

THEN he elaborated with the story of an uncle or cousin who was declared in remission, and then died 2 months later or something like that...his tag line was "with cancer, you just gotta think it is eventually gonna get you..."

Seriously??? In what universe did he think those are appropriate things to say to a person with cancer??? :roll:
12/07 dx RCA3C
2/08 FOLFOX
2/08 bad rad, ER ileo
4/08 LAR
5/08 ileo td
6/08-2/10: 7 surg
09 lung mets, undx IV
9/10 failed RFA, dead 15 mins
6/12 growth, start Xeloda
8/12 add Avastin
11/12-10/13 break
10/13-1/14 xel/avast
1/14 irinotecan
2/14 Stop all

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BrownBagger
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby BrownBagger » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:04 pm

When I was in the hospital recovering from my LAR, colonic J-pouch and temp ileo, the ostomy nurse assured me that because I had a J-pouch, no more colon. I'm thinking, "Wait a minute, the surgeon said everything went as planned. All he was supposed to do was cut out the affected parts of my rectum and about a foot of colon to get at the lymph nodes." I told her that. She re-checked my chart and basically said a j-pouch is a j-pouch and proceeded to give me the spiel about the care and feeding of a conventional ileo j-pouch, how it's a major pain in the ass, and how I might want to consider keeping the ileostomy permanently. I was dazed. I was confused. I was doped up.

Apparently nobody ever explained to the ostomy nurse what a colonic J-pouch is. I tried when I went back for my reversal, but she didn't seem all that interested.
Last edited by BrownBagger on Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Eric, 58
Dx: 3/09, Stage 4 RC
Recurrences: (ongoing, lung, bronchial cavity, ribs)
Major Ops: 6/ RFA: 3 /bronchoscopies: 8
Pelvic radiation: 5 wks. Bronchial radiation—brachytheray: 3 treatments
Chemo Rounds (career):136
Current Chemo Cocktail: Xeloda & Erbitux & Irinotecan biweekly
Current Cocktail; On the Wagon (mostly)
Bicycle miles post-dx 10,477
Motto: Live your life like it's going to be a long one, because it just might, and then you'll be glad you did.

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BrownBagger
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby BrownBagger » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:13 pm

Part of what I do for a living is put on a couple of trade shows in the spring. Last year when I was in radiation treatment, I managed to participate in both shows, and while I didn't broadcast my situation, I wasn't trying to keep it a secret, so some of the people who attend and exhibit at our shows knew about my cancer dx. This year at the shows I'd run into people who would say, "So, how you been?" To which I'd give my stock, "Just fine, thanks." If they followed up with, "No man, I mean how are you?" I knew they knew, and I'd elaborate.

One of our exhibitors is a woman probably in her late '40s, always a heavy smoker. She sidled up to me during the show and confided that she'd been dx with lung cancer. After we talked about it for awhile (apparently it was early stage and her surgery was successful) I said, "Did you hear about me--is that why you're telling me this?" She didn't know about my situation--just felt the need to share that information with a near-perfect stranger. I know the feeling exactly, and I've done it many times myself. Why, I don't know. But it usually feels good.
Eric, 58
Dx: 3/09, Stage 4 RC
Recurrences: (ongoing, lung, bronchial cavity, ribs)
Major Ops: 6/ RFA: 3 /bronchoscopies: 8
Pelvic radiation: 5 wks. Bronchial radiation—brachytheray: 3 treatments
Chemo Rounds (career):136
Current Chemo Cocktail: Xeloda & Erbitux & Irinotecan biweekly
Current Cocktail; On the Wagon (mostly)
Bicycle miles post-dx 10,477
Motto: Live your life like it's going to be a long one, because it just might, and then you'll be glad you did.

jenfer71
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby jenfer71 » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:57 pm

Last October I had to have a stent put in to keep my bile ducts open. It was outpatient and by that evening I was in severe pain...doc sent me home with no pain meds. Fearing that it was pancretitis we went to the ER of the hospital I had the procedure done. After 6 hours of waiting I finally saw an ER doc who asked me why I was there that it seemed that I was a drug seeker. Mind you the only kind of drug I had taken was advil. I did enjoy watching him shrivel up when I announced that I had stage IV CRC. He THEN and only then pulled my chart up on the computer. Needless to say I got those drugs that I was "seeking".
dx 12-6-07 crc
1-23-08 chemo (folfox/avastin)
1-08-09 liver resection
2-9-09 xeloda/avastin. .9/4/09 tumor compressing bile ducts xeloda + radiation 1/19/10 new tumors in liver new mets in lungs....2/1/10 Folfiri w/avastin
38 yo w/ 3 sons (15,10,10)

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Terry
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby Terry » Sun Jun 06, 2010 7:14 pm

Oh boy, I'm so proud to be a nurse right now.....NOT!!!!

The sad thing is, is that I could be quite a compassionate nurse after all of this but I probably won't ever get a chance to do it.

These doctors and nurses need to refresher courses on compassion and empathy every hear.

I do hate to say it but I have in the past judged patients as "drug seekers" myself. Especially after being cornered in a room by a patient that had been holding up pharmacies in order to get his drugs. I did try and find out if there was a history first.
DX 7/3/07
Chemo, radiation, 20 mo. chemo, IMRT, cyberknife, 6/11 lobectomy.
1/16 resection perm. colostomy intraop. rad.
PET 2/12 nose, thyroid, liver, lngs
Folfox 3/12
Lord I know You'll keep me here until
you know I cannot suffer any longer!

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beccab1
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby beccab1 » Mon Jun 07, 2010 8:35 am

Days after my husband was diagnosed (we knew next to nothing at this point) he was scheduled for an endoscopic ultrasound. One of the nurses at the hospital repeatedly commented on how aggressive my husband's cancer must be since he is so young. We were already terrified and she sure wasn't helping. She went on and on about how we needed to do everything that the doctors told us and finished up by saying she was sure she would be getting to know us. Happily, we haven't seen her since.

Something else I will never forget... When my mom died (16 years ago) after a long 10 year battle with breast cancer, I was shocked at the number of people who commented "At least you knew it was coming." One woman said this to me at the viewing. I will never understand why anyone would think that knowing it is going to happen somehow makes it easier. Different yes, easier no!!

I know that people genuinely just don't know what to say in many situations - I often don't. However, I just tell people that I don't know what to say rather that saying something rediculous :D
My husband, Eric, dx @ age 35
Stage IIIb RC (T3N1M0), 3/10
Finished 6 weeks rad/xeloda 5/10
Surgery 7/10, Lap LAR, Colonic J Pouch, Temp. Ileostomy
ypT2N0M0
Xelox (5 rounds)
Takedown 12/13/10
Clear CT - 2011-2015

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EdFromCT
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby EdFromCT » Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:42 am

I think that some people tend to react with almost random free-associations when confronted with unexpected or awkward situations. About 1/3 of the way through my chemotherapy, I met a friend of my wife who hadn't seen me since before the cancer diagnosis. Her immediate remark upon seeing me was "You look pretty good now, but it's going to get MUCH worse!"

How's that for a conversation non-starter? I was so surprised that I very nearly began laughing, but fortunately I didn't. It was explained to me later that her husband had died of CRC some years ago, and that she still isn't comfortable talking about things that remind her of this.

-Ed
DX 2/24/09, age 53
Stage III, T2N2M0, 19/33 LNs positive
right hemicolectomy 3/10/09
started FOLFOX on 4/22/09, switched to XELOX on 7/6/09 due to Port-A-Cath failure
CT scan on 11/5/09. NED! Again in Nov. 2010, Nov. 2011, Dec. 2012.

janeandrea
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby janeandrea » Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:52 am

Actually, the last post made me think of something my Mom said when I visited last year (when I was still going thru chemo). Since my hair had thinned so much, I got it cut short just before I went to visit her. When I asked her what she thought of the cut, she said "I liked it when it was longer." Now I absolutely KNOW my mom would never deliberately say something hurtful, but still what first zinged through my mind was "well yeah, me too, but chemo kinda took care of that."
12/07 dx RCA3C
2/08 FOLFOX
2/08 bad rad, ER ileo
4/08 LAR
5/08 ileo td
6/08-2/10: 7 surg
09 lung mets, undx IV
9/10 failed RFA, dead 15 mins
6/12 growth, start Xeloda
8/12 add Avastin
11/12-10/13 break
10/13-1/14 xel/avast
1/14 irinotecan
2/14 Stop all

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starbuck30
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Location: Milwaukee, WI

Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby starbuck30 » Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:00 pm

Oh yes. I've had my gems. My personal favorites:

-When I was about to get my NG tube in the hospital to relieve a blockage (before dx and I was scared to death and in pain), the nurse told the nurse's aide they'd be putting in the tube and the aide brightened up and said, "OH! Can I watch?! We just did those in lab last week but on dummies and I'd LOVE to see one done on a PERSON!" I'm laying RIGHT THERE. Awesome.

-I've been having trouble getting my weight up since dx (but at least I'm maintaining my current weight, right?) and when I went in for an RN check and stepped on the scale the nurse said, "Wow! A buck fifteen, I would NOT have guessed that. I thought you were MUCH lighter." Thanks honey.

-Same nurse (absolutely LOVE this chick) says during chemo, "You know, working with cancer patients really gives me great perspective about my own life!" So glad to be of assistance. Wonder if it'd change her perspective if I smacked her with my IV pole. (I know, I should probably work on my anger issues. :twisted: )
2/26/10 Dx'd colon cancer
3/12 complete colerectomy, temporary ileostomy
3/19 pathology came back Stage IIIC CC
4/2 started FOLFOX
Chemo "precautionary", last CT showed NED PLEASE God let's keep it that way
9/16/10 FOLFOX finished! Woo hah!

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joeyooser
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Re: The Weird Things People say.....

Postby joeyooser » Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:07 pm

I almost always get sonething like "Oh yeah, my aunt so-and-so died of that" before they realize what they're saying and cringe.
Tim
Stage IIIc - 9/23 lymph nodes, poorly diff, 35yo father of 2.
Lap resection Jul 28 09 resulted in near-deadly leak
Finished chemo Feb '10; Takedown March '10;
Nov 2010 - carcinomatosis
May 2011 - Clinical Trial, failed out of trial, in hospice care


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