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Wednesday 24 July 2013
Living in a shadow
So the lovely other Debs came to see me yesterday for coffee. She was diagnosed and went through treatment before me and, being hormone receptive, is on a load of pills that have terrible side effects. She is desperate to come off them because a) she has been on them for 5 years and b) the side effects are making her life hell.
Interesting one oncologist has told her she can and another that she mustn't. The statistics are that nearly a quarter of women diagnosed with breast cancer will die within 10 years. That's one in four (ish) and the figure is rising.
We talked about our daughters and how to help them. We talked about genes and clinical trials and prevention. We discussed how breast cancer is killing more women, now that things like diptheria and tuberculosis are out of the equation, in the main.
We didn't talk about the fear. We didn't need to. For me, the fear is over, replaced by certainty. For Debs, it is there, underlying all she does.
So she will stay on the pills, she says. Good, I say. The unspoken passes between us without need for articulation.