Angelica Schuyler

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Angelica Schuyler last won the day on July 5

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About Angelica Schuyler

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  1. Angelica Schuyler

    Inflammatory Breast Cancer - Again

    Thanks again to everyone who responded. I slept the day away yesterday, and woke up this morning too anxious for work. My boss wasn’t happy - he knows about my hypo - but I sucked it up and went to see my gyno. My IBS spot is a zit. That is all. No thickening, no lumps, no color or size changes on my breasts. Just a very irritated zit that I’ve prodded too much and need to leave alone. Much like @PennyPanic said above, she told me that I would ONE HUNDRED PERCENT KNOW if it were IBC, and that disease is also ONE HUNDRED PERCENT RARE, so relax. Knowing too much is the killer, I think. Once you’ve had something rare (@lofwyr, you know this) you become so acutely aware of your mortality and the hundred thousand things that could kill you that it’s hard to remember that not everything is out to get you. An oncologist of mine once said, “Angie, you can’t live like this. You have to remember that cancer survivors get regular illnesses, too.” I guess I still haven’t absorbed that. @AndrewF, your story cracked me up because I’ve definitely been there-done that with doctors both in my mind and in real life. Everyone everywhere is promoting disease awareness but, sometimes, a little bit of ignorance (or some clarity of mind) is bliss. Anyway, TL;DR - I don’t have IBC. I have a zit. Doc says to stop prodding. I live to see another day. This is a community of rock stars.
  2. Angelica Schuyler

    Inflammatory Breast Cancer - Again

    Thank you both for responding. I want to run to the doctor, but I know that IBC is often misdiagnosed and the only definitive procedure for diagnosis is a biopsy, so I’m sure I’ll just be sent home to worry about it until it disappears or gets worse. I’ve been trying not to Google, but I peeked today and got both scared and somewhat reassured. IBC odds for a woman my age are around 1%, plus survival rates are getting a lot better. Still, my first cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, only occurs in 1% of all people, and I got that... I’ve been doing ok for awhile and I hate this. Maybe this is my anxiety looking for something more familiar to glom onto instead of worrying about politics and looking for a new job.
  3. Angelica Schuyler

    New mole has me a bit put off...

    Kind of weird how that works, right? The real problem isn’t actually a problem (to your mind), so your anxiety tries to glom onto whatever makes sense. I do the same thing. Any time there’s a moment of relative calm, my mind will find SOMETHING to fear and hyperfocus on. It’s exhausting, isn’t it? I feel you about both moles and cancer. I had cancer once and my biggest fear is getting it again - and having it not be curable the second time. Top that off with being pale AF and dotted with moles, well, yeah, freaking out about skin cancer is a given. But if you’re taking care of your skin, keeping your eye on the oddballs, and remembering that most weird skin things AREN’T cancer, you’re doing your best!
  4. Angelica Schuyler

    Migraine aura

    I get the auras once in a blue moon - black spots in my field of vision that make it impossible to read or do anything. Not harmful, just irritating. 😑
  5. Angelica Schuyler

    Scared of stomach cancer

    Hi, @seaurch7. I'm 33 and went through the whole GI cancer panic, too. Stomach, pancreatic, colon (for a LONG time). I had a lot of stomach issues over the winter, too, which I never had before. And I went to the GI and I panicked and basically begged for a CT scan - and everything came back fine. Anxiety can jack up your body in a million ways you haven't even thought of. It's hard to get that fear out of your head, but always tell that panicked voice that at your age, with your symptoms, there is no way this isn't anxiety. I hope your new medication starts working for you quickly. HA is a beast and when it's taken over your mind, it's just no way to live.
  6. Angelica Schuyler

    New mole has me a bit put off...

    I have a few oddballs myself, mostly dual-colored moles but one that has jagged margins plus multiple colors like yours. I think mine is a little bit bigger. My dermatologist once told me that the oddballs are harmless but to keep an eye on them for any more changes in color, shape, size, etc. Even then, the odds of it being melanoma are low. Skin changes all the time, and the reasons are completely benign more often than not. Enjoy your vacation. Let those intrusive thoughts roll right past you and tell 'em to take a hike!
  7. Angelica Schuyler

    Severe heaviness

    Nutmeg, what you're experiencing is exactly what panic attacks feel like. It's like what you'd imagine a heart attack to me - chest feels like it's being crushed, you can't breathe, everything hurts. It's scary as hell and it feels like you're dying, but you're not dying. I promise. I'm sorry you're dealing with these. I'm also sorry that you can't get insurance, which is complete crap and inhumane for reasons I won't get into here. I hope your situation changes soon so you'll at least have the safety net of a physician.
  8. Angelica Schuyler

    Inflammatory Breast Cancer - Again

    Yes, I know I need to stop being so flaky in how often I show up and respond around here. Please forgive me. A couple of weeks ago, I wandered by with an IBC fear - a pinkish purplish blotch on the upper part of my right breast by my armpit. As everyone suggested, it was nothing and faded away over the course of the week. I forgot about it and continued on with life. Then THIS one happened. After swimming and showering on Saturday, a pink spot appeared on the top of my left breast toward the side. It doesn't itch or burn or hurt, it's just there. At first, it seemed to have a little bit of a whitehead on it, but I popped it - again, much like a pimple - and that part went away. It's about a centimeter or less in width and I can't tell if it's going away. My fiancé swears it's disappearing, but I feel like it keeps shrinking and getting bigger and going lighter and then getting darker again. I know that IBC can start out looking like a pimple or a bug bite, so I can't get this off my mind, especially if it's not going away. Has anyone else experienced this?
  9. Angelica Schuyler

    Always Something new

    I'm glad your appointment went well and you're on the path to feeling better! Going to the dentist to double-check definitely can't hurt, especially if you have a tooth that may be erupting, but I bet the salt water rinse and maybe changing toothpastes again will help a lot.
  10. Angelica Schuyler

    Having a tough week.

    Oh, hun, I'm so sorry. How's your head doing now? Are you sure you saw blood? I thought I saw blood near my stool one time, but I'd also eaten something red the night before, so it was hard to tell exactly what it was. It never happened again, either. Hemorrhoids can cause blood, too, and you may never know they're there.
  11. Angelica Schuyler

    Relapse - Breast This Time

    Pinpricks look a little bigger now. Sent a photo to my fiancé and he said he could see nothing, but I know they're there. Stared at them in the bathroom at work today, what, twice? Can't focus. I know I need to be doing my job and looking for a new one, but instead I'm panicking about dying a horrible death from a fast-moving cancer. So ironic because I can give advice to others about being logical and not worrying, but I can't take it myself.
  12. Angelica Schuyler

    Not doing great

    Nutmeg, I promise you are not dying. It's so, so hard not to think the worst when you have HA, and especially when you've experienced the worst before. I'm a cancer survivor, too, so I get it. Having a normal, run-of-the-mill illness isn't logical for a lot of survivors. If it happens once, in our minds, it can happen again - and maybe we won't be so lucky the next time. But the odds of us staying healthy are greater than the odds that we'll find ourselves gravely ill again. You're more likely to have food poisoning, or a stomach virus, or just a gut that revolted against whatever you ate than advanced cancer or a freak infection in your heart. Shoot, my last stomach virus was bizarre. My liver panel was off the chain and I was weak and barely eating for over a week. But it was just that - a virus. You have every right to be scared, but try to keep telling your panicked mind that you, too, can get a "regular" illness just like everyone else. This is going to pass and you're going to think, "Huh, I guess it wasn't a Big Bad Disease, after all. I do just get sick like everyone else." And remember that you're not alone.
  13. Angelica Schuyler

    Fever in child over a week?

    I don't think it's anything serious if the fevers have been low (100.4 is the minimum temperature for a fever per the Cleveland Clinic) and she's been acting like herself otherwise. It's so easy to jump to the worst-case scenario, especially when your mom is sick and you already have cancer on the brain, but kids are little petri dishes. They catch everything. That said, it wouldn't hurt to bring her back in and see if she has another bacterial infection or something non-viral that can be treated with medication. Keep breathing, and send all my best to your mom and your kiddo.
  14. Angelica Schuyler

    Relapse - Breast This Time

    All right, so it looks like most of the pinkness has faded. There's still some slight discoloration and two pinprick sized dots on my chest: a pink one on the edge of the breast (the original one) and a purple, bruise-like one a little further up my chest. My fiancé says he doesn't even know where it is anymore unless I point it out to him. But I can still see them and I'm checking multiple times a day to see if they're spreading. I'm also convinced there's a "dent" by those spots and dimpling is a symptom of IBC, so I'm examining and manipulating and comparing both breasts to see if the "dent" is symmetric. AND I have pain and burning around my breast which seems to feel worse when I stretch, so it's probably muscular but it also hurts when I poke or squish my breast so maybe the pain is coming from my breast, which, of course, is IBC. I'm exhausted all the time, which I also think is a symptom, and just want to go home and sleep this problem away. It doesn't help that I need to find a new job soon and that I found a roach in my apartment last night, and worried so much that my landlord would evict me over it that I wound up with chest pain and thought I was having a heart attack (at age 33). I've never had squeezing chest pain as an anxiety symptom before, and I'm still concerned about it. My fiancé, who fancies himself a massage therapist, poked around and found some very tight muscles that he believed caused the pain, but I'm not sure. There is always a reason - several reasons - to panic, and I'm tired of all of them.
  15. Angelica Schuyler

    Always Something new

    I'm glad you're going in. Are you heading to the dentist? They'll be able to tell right away if you have an erupting wisdom tooth causing the problem and get you set up to have it removed. It's a piece of cake and you'll feel so much better. Take good care and let us know how it goes.