Breast Cancer Inspired Me to Live My Life- Dr.Sudesh Mukhopadyaya
Year 2016 brought me a number of challenges; may be these started before that. I did not realize under the guiding hand of the Supreme Power. After superannuation, I got my new knees in 2013. Was learning to walk when was blessed with a job in early 2014 in the Disability Sector that has been a professional commitment and passion for me for more than three decades; but first time my 100% in that sector. Somehow; decided to leave that in September 2015 as discovered that I can contribute much more if not bound by the job. But nature has carved out more challenges.
I lost my dear daughter- in- law in June 2016 during Kidney transplant. I was really upset on loosing this precious child; even today I see her smiling and brave smile with which she faced life with ailment over a decade or more.
I was diagnosed during routine medical checkup with Breast Cancer (BC) in early August with tumour at Grade III and cancer at stage II A. Within a week all tests indicated the urgency for surgery. My surgeons especially the younger one spent time with us to explain the implications of tests and what would be the future steps of treatment and likely impact on my looks and life style.
Within a month of mastectomy the chemotherapy started till end February 2017.
Doctors advised to get a wig made; but I decided to see how Nature will redesign me. My family supported me and I started my journey to face new challenges. I was lucky to have a very calm but very competent Medical Oncologist and very supportive doctors and nursing staff in chemo room.
My family stood firm with me. Husband was always there and children also came frequently from Mumbai to support us. All relatives and friends also stood by us.
Surgery and losing a breast did not bother me; I heal quickly as I have been blessed with good health and strong will power. However, first two chemos (out of total 16) posed challenges; lost weight, all hair, black nails, continuous fever, hospitalization and blood transfusion. But Third chemo onwards was back in my fighting spirit.
Started taking long chemo days of Delhi winter as outing with bed rest, hot tea, a Paneer Parantha breakfast and a royal south Indian lunch; talking to my family member and/ or friend who also needed to have this outing with me for 16 such sessions. Last eight sessions were on weekly basis.
It was after my second chemo, after reporting to my Medical Oncologist and team in my usual smiling way and saying I am well , I shared my professional background; my commitment and passion I posed the question: When will I get my stamina back? I wanted to go back to my work; read, write, travel and meet people. Interestingly, also got an opportunity to travel to a nearby country with my husband but was not allowed due to chances of infection.
My lady doctors were very supportive and encouraged me to remain active and do light household work whenever I feel up to that. This really helped as did not have many issues till date with water retention in my arm; a common occurring with BC.
“I wanted to complete my chemotherapy so that I could get back to my life.”
Hence on my last chemo Day my doctors told me with a smile, enjoy life and Sisters observed to come and meet them but not for any more chemos.
Today, I am back to my personal and professional life. Have new hairstyle with soft and lovely grey hairs and clear skin and glowing enthusiasm to do my best till my last breath.
I learnt that Life is never a straight line; it has all its curves and plateaus; it is for us with Nature’s Grace that we cover these paths and accept as Life evolves. I am ready to enter 74 year of my life on this earth. I wish all the best to the readers. I never would have penned my experience but continuous persuasion of Dr. Murthy to do so. Year 2018 November has been a rare opportunity to meet him. Thanks Dr. Murthy.