The Boob Report – The Sun Rises After Cancer Drugs

hSunrise over Breckenridge

Shy of three weeks into 2017, I thought I’d check in and let you know how The Year of the Big Chill is going. It’s all about working hard, but playing harder. Little did I know these lifestyle changes would affect me in a different way. It banished a horrible side effect of my anti-cancer drug.

Two simple changes have made a HUGE impact. So huge, I have to tell you about it.

I meditate for ten minutes a day.

After attending the Wanderlust Yoga Festival in Whistler, I felt super chill and grounded for about a week. Then that fantastic feeling disappeared. I figured I had to go to another festival to regain it.

Meditation clears my mind for new ideas. Practicing ten minutes before I write unlocks my creative flow. It helps me focus. I’m less distracted by sparkly things. I love sparkly things.

I write for three hours (or more, depending on my groove) and then shut my laptop to go on an adventure. That may be anything from skiing to taking a hike to going to the grocery store. It doesn’t matter, as long as I get out of the house to do something.

The isolation of writing books and screenplays was a downer for me last year. I’m an adventure junkie. It’s my rocket fuel. Now I get out every day. Ideas pop into my tiny cranium out of nowhere.

The combination of both of these changes resulted in the coolest thing ever.

After my double boobectomities, my radiologist prescribed Tamoxifen. I felt a low grade sluggish, PMS, blues. It would clench my gut with anxiety upon waking and follow me like a shadow during the day. I attributed it to normal worry any cancer patient goes through. Nope. It’s a side-effect of anti-estrogen drugs. I had to keep taking it. My cancer ate estrogen like a starved pig at a Las Vegas buffet.

the-sun-rises-after-cancer-drugsWhen my doctor took me off Tamoxifen over a year ago, I went pill-free for two weeks. I was so excited!! I felt super charged upon waking!! My Susie Sunshine self was BACK!! Yes, this warrants lots of exclamation points. (My baseline normal is like other people’s most optimistic and best days.) But after two weeks on Anastrozole, that same guilty, worried, clench my gut feeling returned. GAH. 

By the way, my diet hasn’t changed, except for one thing. I stopped eating pizza. Once a month or so, I’d indulge in a pan style veggie lovers, then I would crash the next day. I mentioned it to my daughter, Courtney, who is a personal trainer. She said that pizza is the worst. With so much cheese and carbs, it becomes greasy glop in our stomachs and sends our bodies into detox overload.

I haven’t drank alcohol for two and a half years after finding out the correlation between it and seven different cancers. (Check out this post about that dirty little secret. Alcohol means any kind of alcohol, including wine.) It also causes osteoporosis. Bummer.

Here’s the good news:

After meditating and going outside every day for about ten days, I noticed that same grounded, peaceful feeling in my gut had reappeared. The anxiety from Anastrozole had VANISHED! Ten minutes to zen. How cool is that?

Okay, so the super-hopped up, excited me may have to wait another eighteen months when I’ll be off the drugs forever. But, that low grade, I must have done something wrong feeling, is history! Who knows? Maybe my over-endorphined self will return with a couple more weeks of this new lifestyle. People who know me will read this and say, “You will be even more manic?”

I wonder if Danny will hide my yoga mat?

This could help you too!

Ever feel a little down? I would think this combination of getting outside to do something away from the computer and ten minute meditation would work for others, especially mid-winter when lack of Vitamin D slows us down and causes the blues. You should try it. It truly works! If nothing else, life is a lot more fun.

What do you think? What lifestyle changes have you made over the years? How are the sunrises in your neighborhood?

100 thoughts on “The Boob Report – The Sun Rises After Cancer Drugs

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  1. This is why I love coming on to read peoples blogs, after being stressed for exams and busy with work, nothing compares to what you must have, or going through and I loved reading this!! 🙂 I love going outside and will do more of it after reading this 🙂 I will look forward to reading more of your writing 🙂


    1. Thanks so much!
      I’ve been sick the last three days and haven’t been outside, but the meditation is still kicking anxiety’s butt! I’m willing myself to feel better by tomorrow, so I can slack line… Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’d love to give up alcohol. I usually take a break at the beginning of each year for a month or two. Last year I made it to six months. Also, at the beginning of each year I try and set goals for meditation but I’ve never found anything that’s stuck.


    1. Try the HeadSpace app. I downloaded it on my phone. It only takes 10 minutes and you can meditate while sitting in your chair. It’s super easy!

      Good for you making it to six months! I couldn’t believe the peer pressure when I gave up alcohol. It’s such a societal thing to drink here in the States. “Aren’t you having a glass of wine?” When I tell them, they can’t believe wine is included in the link to cancer. Alcohol is alcohol. I had been worried sick about cancer recurrence, but this lifestyle change gave me confidence in my health. I’ve never looked back!


    1. Thanks so much, Ann! I thought I’d be stuck with that low-level anxiety for another 18 months. Whew!

      Most of us jumped on the alcohol, anti-oxidant band wagon. The truth is finally coming out. I read about the link in my newspaper recently, but it’s been on for a while now. If I’d known about the correlation, I’m sure I would have quit a long time ago, since I’m such a health nut!!! My cancer was probably caused by a perfect storm of factors. I’ll never know.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s the thing with cancer. You never know. I’ve heard of many who lead a very healthy lifestyle of no cigarettes, alcohol eating healthy food with a regular exercise routine. Then BAM! Cancer… 😦


        1. It’s so sharklike. I also have a strong suspicion that soy is involved, big time. I reacted to it after drinking soy milk. When I cut it out of my diet a year later, I didn’t realize it was in my veggie burgers and every processed food including peanut butter.


          1. Oh wow! That is such a revelation. I wouldn’t have thought about soy for a second! I’m being reminded of food elimination process with breastfeeding a while back, and I cannot imagine the process you go through.
            All in all though, the good news is, you did find something! Hurray! 🙂


  3. getting outdoors and being active always has a positive impact on my productivity.. but sometimes I don’t follow through. I re-joined a fitness club in October having quit four years before because my monthly membership fee was more a donation. I can definitely feel a difference between then and now. I am going to have to sneak out and get a work out in today. I need it, I can feel the need to get up and move. It makes a huge difference and I always feel better mentally and physically. Have a wonderful week. Peace.


    1. Thanks for reading, Clay!
      It’s funny how leaving the house is the hardest part sometimes. I like cocooning, but there’s nothing like fresh air or the challenge of a good workout. The effects are lasting. 🙂
      I’m sick with the flu, so I’m not going anywhere for few more days. Gah!


    1. I don’t think I could ever completely go vegetarian even though I don’t eat as much meat as I used to. I love the yoga+meditation combo and plan to keep it as an essential part of my daily routine.
      Thanks so much for swinging by to read, Gulliver!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post, Susie! I’m so happy for you that you found a “way back” to your previous joy!

    I’ve also found I have to get “out and about” and I do meditate, have gotten back into it nearly daily. and, yes, all these things DO help! I’d also gotten back into amateur photography and am finding it fun to PLAY again! Something I totally do for fun that I don’t have to fret about having to document and write things off! But it gets hard trying to do this stuff every day, for many reasons that we all have, but I try my best to keep up with them and find them greatly enjoyable! And I’ve come up with several new short stories this year! I haven’t written so many new short stories in YEARS!

    So, congratulations, and I wish you continued success with your new “protocol”! I now understand your “warp speed,” and you have my permission to “gear up” (not that you need it ;-] )!


    1. Thanks Frank!
      I’ve fought off the flu this last week and am starting to feel human again, so striving for warp speed may have to wait a few days.
      I’m stunned at the benefits of meditation. I wonder what else I could be doing to unlock my brain.

      I’m glad to hear you’re back to playing. The photo you took of that cougar is amazing. Even more amazing was it wasn’t taken in a bar in downtown Colorado Springs. Sorry, I have to make up for a week of clogged brain syndrome. 🙂 And so many exclamation points tell me how happy you are, Frank! It’s all good and the effort is well worth it.
      Thanks for reading.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow, sorry to hear about your illness, but you must have needed the downtime, Susie!

        Capturing those images was SO incredible and wonderful! I was smiling and chuckling to myself that I had this beautiful cat all to myself! It was stunning! Thank YOU, and thank you for reading and commenting! Take the needed rest and regroup!


  5. I’m so sorry you have to take these drugs that make you feel so awful. Your lifestyle changes are making a wonderful difference for you. My plan this year is to become completely vegan. I’ve been vegetarian for about 3 years now. Want to go all the way. I already feel better. Need to get out more, I don’t have that need that you feel but I know it’s good for me, so I am determined. Alcohol, now I’ve never heard that it is cancer causing, but I don’t doubt it. None for two months, so I’m trying that too. I wish you well.


    1. Thanks so much, Barbara!
      You are the bomb of wellness! The Alcohol correlation has been a dirty little secret for years. Check out the link “the dirty little secret” above. It will take you to The word is just coming out. It was in Women’s World magazine recently and a big article hit our local newspaper a month ago. It raises estrogen levels and does a caustic number on throats and other organs. The interesting thing is it doesn’t always take much. We’re all different and some bodies can totally handle it.

      You should live to be 100!


  6. Thank you for this wonderful post. Thanks for the information about Anastrozole, which my oncologist put me on, I thought I was still dealing with depression and anxiety from the diagnosis. Bummer about the wine, I guess I’ll have to wean myself off of that pleasure too. I gave up Yoga after my surgery but it looks like it might perk me up. Great post and take care.


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