Friends, I have some news. Some bad and some good. Most of it very good! You will think I’m strange in a second for saying that it’s mostly very good, but to me it is. The bad news is I have breast cancer and will undergo a bilateral mastectomy in a few months… But here’s all the good news:
- I have been considered very high risk for breast cancer due to several factors, and have been constantly monitored by mammogram, ultrasound, MRI and biopsy. I have had a few lumps that turned out to be benign, but still stressed me out and caused me to be on edge. After the bilateral mastectomy, I will no longer be considered high risk for breast cancer.
- My most recent mammogram showed new microcalcifications grouped together on the upper right quadrant of my right breast. I am so thankful for the technology that allowed my doctors to catch it at this early stage. I have High GradeStage 0 Ductal Carcinoma In Situ, the very mildest and earliest form of breast cancer. It’s contained within the milk ducts and non-invasive. I have known people who have died from breast cancer, but because of early detection, I most likely will not. Please, go get your mammograms! Wouldn’t you rather know there’s a problem and take care of it before it becomes grave and threatens your life?
- Although a lumpectomy combined with radiation is an option for me, I have opted for a double mastectomy instead, which precludes the need for chemotherapy or radiation. Some people may wonder why I would take the most drastic action rather than the most minimally invasive one. There are several reasons, and I’m sure I will elaborate on them as we move forward. For now, suffice it to say that I feel my breasts have served their purpose. They have breastfed my three children and given pleasure to my husband (and perhaps a few other people in their day, but this isn’t that kind of post…) They are heavy, with dense fibrous tissue that likes to hide cancers and other masses. They are 45 years old. Honestly, a new set of smaller, perkier boobs for my 45thbirthday doesn’t sound like the worst thing in the world. I may even be able to wear things I have never been able to wear before! But mostly, this mitigates my risk and doesn’t require me to be exposed to harmful radiation and chemotherapy.
- I have a wonderful support system of family and friends, and a team of amazing doctors taking care of me.
- I have an amazing God who “makes me lie down in green pastures” and “leads me beside still waters.”
- Though this will delay my nursing school journey a bit, the forced rest will give me time to finish that book, get my blog going, help Mike with real estate stuff, work on projects around the house, spend time with my family, but mostly time to rest and reflect on what I want the next 45 years of my life to look like!
- I know that not everyone is as lucky as me. If you are experiencing something heavy and need a friend to talk to, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Sending hugs and love and light to you all.
- Love, D