"Faites que le reve devore votre vie afin que la vie ne devore pas votre reve"
Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Friday, October 1, 2010

a personal boob story

As October is national breast cancer awareness month,
I feel it is a good time to share my story.
Seven years ago, I had surgery to remove a mass
in my right breast.
It turned out to be just fat tissue and
other things but it left scars,
emotional and physical!

Here is a picture of the physical scar, 7 years later!

But to get a better understanding,
we need to travel back through time....

When I was a baby, my maternal grandmother got
thyroid cancer, she was fairly young,
and in the early seventies, the survival rate was low.
She fought and won that battle,
she was even studied as a success story.

Fast forward to my late high school years,
my same grandmother was diagnosed with a double breast cancer!
This time she was less young, the prognostic was better but not great,
and she made it!
By then, her scars were quite impressive,
once again not just on her body.

She celebrated her 10th survival anniversary
and all was good.
Well, just before the 15th anniversary,
her breast cancer was back, or she got a new one
but none the less it was there.
(she is still alive....I am about to make some detours!) 
My mom was sent right away to the doctor
as fear sprayed trough the family.
(my mom had always been checked since
her mom's first encounter with breast cancer).
Well the doctors were unsure about my mother,
she seemed fine (and she was and still is!),
but more tests were done for safety.

About that time, Mon Cheri and I were thinking
about making another addition,
Brick Master was almost 2 1/2 and we felt it was time.
To make sure it was all good,
I went to get check by my doctor,
and told her about what was happening in my family.
Out of safety and because pregnancy is not a good time
for cancer treatment, a few tests were run.
Well something was found.
It was decided to wait 2 months and redo mammograms
and other delicacies to make sure.
Those 2 months were long, I was pretty grumpy!
I went back, and that thing was still there,
it was hard to tell if it was the same size or if it had changed.
So we had to decide: wait some more, then make a decision,
or remove it and test it.

Since those 2 months had been so much fun
and we wanted a new baby, we went with number 2.
We lived in a very small town, with only one surgeon, and a tight schedule.
The part nobody mentioned was the needle localization
without anesthesia and the mammogram that goes with it, after insertion!
( I am not a total wimp, my children were born without pain killer!)
Well it did not go totally as planned,
my friend was deep inside my breast,
and when the needle was inserted, my lung was almost pierced!
Yep it hurt! After that no mammogram for me! or any moving!
I have a better understanding for what being stabbed must feel like,
and I do not recommend it!
The surgeon was good and everything went well.
I walked around, for the next few weeks, holding my breast as it hurt pretty bad,
the guys at work looked at me a little funny
( I was the only woman in my team)
but as they were all married men, they understood the peril of making fun of me!
(and I knew their wives!)
The diagnostic came back, a cube of about 1 inch had been removed
and all was good!
Happiness and Joy!
My grandmother was so happy, she always felt so guilty as it had been her fault!
Her first great grand daughter was born about 9 months after that news!

Now my grandmother has been once again diagnosed with another version of the same cancer...
she is now an old lady, and the best course of action seems
to do nothing as any treatment will diminish her quality of life.
She is still very active and complains when she needs help with her garden,
not a little 8 x 8 section!
yep, she feeds herself from the garden,
so always busy with potatoes, green beans, tomatoes, strawberries, peaches, pears!
She is a quite a lady! (not pearls or fancy tea here!)


Good Luck Grandma,
I love you!



2 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for sharing your story. We should all remember it can and does happen to anyone. I wish you and your grandmother the best.
    Lindy

    ReplyDelete

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