The struggle is REAL!

Hi! This is my first post as the reality of what is happening continues to sink in hour by hour, minute by minute.  On October 23rd, I was diagnosed with Anal cancer after a removal of what we thought was a small hemorrhoid. My follow up that day turned into a nightmare of disbelief and stunned shock. Fast forward to today, I've had numerous doctor visits, Pet scan, Ct scans, Port installation, Chemo class and this week is Colonoscopy before my big date of November 18th when all treatments begin.  I will have Mito and FU5 - 2 Chemos & 6 Weeks of Radiation. No Surgery as it was already removed.  Radical cancer cells have invaded 2 lymph nodes and my anus.  Now there is a plan of attack however mentally I feel like I am falling apart.  I am weepy and tired. I go to bed by 9:00 and sleep... all I want is to sleep it all away. I feel like my life has been put on hold and I should hide away until I am well. I don't want to be around my friends or family too much as it makes me feel vulnerable and the look of sorry is hard to take. I started prepping right away, reading everything I could, making lists, buying items that others seem to help with side-effects, I cut my hair off so it will be easier to take when it starts to thin or fall out. I've been meditating and walking at my local park, taking more naps, slowing my business and finishing up last items so I can focus on getting better. I am at the edge of a cliff and about to do a swan dive into the scariest unknown of my life. Thankful for this space to vent as I've read a lot of survivor stories on how to survive. XOXO 

Christine, Easterly like this post.
4 people threw a punch at your cancer.
3 people sent you a prayer.
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Wow! I can ditto absolutely everything you have written. All I can say is that now almost 5 years later it is a distant bad dream. The memory goes further and further away and I feel better and better. Life will return to an almost normal place but I actually feel blessed that I had the opportunity to pause my life and I guess re- prioritize. Hang’s not an easy ride but the light will come at the end of the tunnel. Your family and friends will help you through. Thinking of you!!
Stacy, I can relate to so much of your post and my approach was very similar. I want you to know you can lean on us for support, motivation, and information! Keep the focus on the finish line, surviving and then eventually thriving. It’s a difficult 8 plus weeks but things will get better. ❤️
Hi Stacy. I'm sorry you have to go through all of this. The treatment will be quick. It's hard but doable. Try to sleep well, eat well, hydrate yourself. If you're on a skinny side, may be gain a few more pounds before starting your chemo. I've lost 40lb in the first month, but I was not skinny. A lot of us just had hair thinning not total loss. I got a new hair type after mine, better than I had before. Resently I've read that antioxidants are not recommended during the chemo because they help cancer cells to survive. Wow! I remember that I loaded myself with that stuff. Isn't the interesting info to ask your doctor? I wish you the best outcome with your treatment. Hugs!
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Stacy, just sending you a hug and hoping you can just hang in there with us! I'm a bit over 9 years out and the "new normal" is fine. (Strong hint, get good help to prevent the vaginal stenosis that can result from this treatment, key to sex life post-cancer and pain-free gyn exams!) Accept the help from family and friends - it makes them feel better, so you can think that you are helping them! You'll get through it with this wonderful blog. Please visit my website,, hope there is something there that can help you.
I am so sorry for you. We have all been there. It is not an easy road mentally and physically. Surround yourself with positive family and friends and continue to keep as much normal during this time. Prayers for comfort.
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Stacy, this is definitely a life changing occurrence, as all of us here—your new supporters and cheerleaders—will attest to! And the pre-treatment mindset can be really debilitating. What I will say is that it is do-able, and you will get through this. It is not pleasant, but I would say you have a bit of an advantage in that you sound like you’ve prepared yourself with abundant knowledge of what is to come. And in my opinion the folks here on BFAC are your best resource for info about treatment, and especially recommendations for dealing with all the aspects and side effects of treatment. We’ve all been there and will help you. Please continue to post and ask questions as you travel this new path. We’re here for you.
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Sending you all the good vibes and mojo I have!
Stacy likes this comment
Hi Stacy-all of us here can relate to what you were going through – looking back, I think I was in shock the entire time I went through treatment. While many of us had a really rough time, others also sailed through without many negative side effects – make sure you focus on the positive stories too! I’m glad you found this blog before beginning treatment-I didn’t find it until after I had finished and it would have been so helpful. Just remember we are all here ready to support you and offer you guidance as you go through the treatment. Just focus on the new year when you will be finished with treatment and don’t hesitate to ask anything along the way!
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Stacy, when you do that swan dive in your head, just picture all of us catching you in a cloud of softness. Best way I can describe this group! HUGE thanks to Jill, for creating it!
Lean on us, anytime. Someone is always on here, seems like, because I was an odd one who rarely slept, and always got an answer. I sent you a PM. X
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Yes it is a shock but you can get through it. Just go day by day. I am seven years post treatment. Was the same staging as you. Had minimal side effects - never lost my hair. Everyone has had a different reaction to the treatnent so there is every answer to any question you may have.The support here is priceless. Hugs Annabelle
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Stacy, what you're going thru is so normal at this stage. I was in shock and disbelief for days. But it sounds like you're preparing already which is great. Hang in there...just look at the number of survivors here (I'm 8 1/2 years out) and stay focused on that.

And please, whatever you need to ask, ask. Nothing is taboo here. :)
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Hi Stacy,

I am sure in you are shock like most of us when first given this diagnosis. Easier said than done but try not to panic. I had the same treatment as you only with surgery and my hair did not fall out. So try not to jump ahead.

Tomorrow is Veterans Day. You are now in a battle and you, the General, will determine the outcome. You have an army behind you - oncologists, radiation oncologists, hematologists, surgeons, family, friends and your supporters - to help you through this difficult time. Your are preparing for battle now with scans, measurements, molding, tattoos, ports, etc. Your weapons are chemo, radiation, surgery (if needed)and any other treatments available. Battles are won one day at a time. When you have finished treatment, you will have won the war. (Corny, I know, but I am feeling sentimental about Veterans Day.)

You can do this and don't have to do it alone. No matter what is on your mind or if you need to rant and rave, we will listen. This is the best supportive knowledgeable group I have ever found which is why I still continue to come here after six years.
4 people like this comment
Hi Stacy. So glad to see your post. You've already got friends here who will support you! So many of us have been where you are right now, so we can understand your uncertainty of what lies ahead. It's normal. Just take this one day at a time and know you can come here for advice, hugs, and just a place to vent. You will get through this!
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hi Honeybean....cute name and that's the way I got thru all of the crapola prior, during and now--going on 15 months free and clear.

I know it can be scary and all....but just try and stay as calm as possible and def stay as focused on recovery and being FREE AND CLEAR IN THE FUTURE. IT DEFINATELY DOES AND WILL HELP TO STAY POSITIVE IN YOUR THOUGHTS....hoping you people rooting for you....we here on the site will def be there for you.


remember..... u have AHOLE CANCER.....NOT FUNNY BONE CANCER.


Stacy, Olga like this comment
I'm glad you found us. Welcome. We fought a different cancer in our house, although they are different they are much the same too. I have been on the sidelines as many of my friends here have gone through treatment and all have survived. It will be very tough at the end but it's doable, just keep your eye on the goal post. As for your family and friends, they are shocked and sad for you, they are mourning the "well" you. But I agree, it is hard when people second guess what you might be feeling. Just know they are likely lost too, that's because you are so important to them.

Your life probably is on hold, but only for a short while in the large scheme of things. Wishing the best possible outcome for you!

Olga, Stacy like this comment
Thank you Deborah and I am so sorry for your loss. Your husband seemed like a wonderful man and was loved by so many. My deepest sympathies and prayers for comfort during your times of need. XOXO
Deborah likes this comment
Thanks Stacy, He was a good man taken too soon.
Stacy likes this comment
That’s exactly how I felt also. I’m sorry your going thru this. I’m a little over two years out. It was a hard journey But you can do this. Ask us any questions you have or vent if you need to. Hugs!! 💙💙
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Great job getting prepared, I was the same way it it really helped. It does actually get easier when the treatment starts. That initial period was the most stressful for me. I had some anxiety so bad I tried some meds but then took advantage of medical marijuana that really helped me get through that stress and anytime things got too much. Make sure they go ahead and get you anti nausea meds and fill them and take them as prescribed too. I'm sorry you have to deal with this too but you will get through it and it will become a dim memory soon. I'm just over 2 months after treatment and it's hard to believe how much better I'm doing already. Stay positive and just take it a day at a time I would say. Please keep us abreast of how it's going and ask anything!
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thought I already responded... must have closed without sending.
Welcome again. I'm so glad you wrote a post. This blog, is a life saver with this type of cancer. We have shared information our medical folks, can't even fathom. (or don't want to think about)
4 years post treatment, and I still rely on hearing others perspective to get through, and reassure myself. As still my HMO doesn't want to address aftercare.
Thanks to the brave ladies, here, we can get the full information, support, encouragement.
! It's a harsh treatment, but over shortly.
I just helped my sister with 6 months of treatment for Lymphoma, and the long treatment time is challenging. (more about that later)
Your on the right track!
I regret not putting those that offered to help, busy doing non health things. I think these challenges bring people together. But, because of the privacy I needed, I said no thanks. But, I should have organized them to paint the house or something.
Food is so individually specific, in this cancer as well as having people around (you want the bathroom all to yourself, and 24/7 available to only you.
You can do this!
We are here for you!
Olga, Stacy like this comment
You've come to the right place for support and encouragement. Anal cancer survivors are the most supportive of each other, and survivors of other cancers, that I've ever known. Blessings to you.
Stacy likes this comment
I will be with you in thoughts and prayers tomorrow as you start your mission to destroy this beast. I am in my second year of being cancer-free after 3B Anal Cancer. My tumor was large (5 mm) with 2 pelvic lymph nodes involved. I went through the same treatment you will go through. You can do it. Don't give up! I didn't think I'd ever get my life back to normal, but I did. You are not alone!
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Vital Info


October 28, 2019

Roswell, Georgia 30076

March 10, 1966

Cancer Info

Anal Cancer

October 23

Stage 3A



Removal of a small hemorrhoid but turns out I have anal cancer. No other symptoms


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