Loss Is the Overriding Theme

When diagnosed with breast cancer, besides being overwhelmed, there are feelings of loss and grief. What happens after diagnosis is that what your old world consisted of — your day-to-day life, concerns, anxieties and goals — seems to be lost. A whole new world of medical interventions and dealing with breast cancer treatment options is your primary focus. Your body image as you once knew it changes, and what was once taken for granted becomes the center of the new life that develops.

There are new concerns and fears about things like losing one's hair and one's breast. Changes and losses that occur, including the possibility of early menopause and the loss of child bearing, which may have a profound impact on the life of a young woman undergoing breast cancer treatment. Feelings of a general loss of control of your health, fears about survival, and lost confidence in your body to fight off disease bring you to a place you have never been. This vulnerable place can be used to strategically put you on the offense. Knowing and recognizing the overriding theme of loss in your life now that you are being treated for breast cancer can help you place yourself in a position of strength. Think of yourself as a mountain, scarred and battered, but unmoved and standing proud. You should allow yourself to experience these feelings of loss and grief to assist you in the grieving process, but then set your mind to overcome them and move forward toward a new life.

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