I was practicing my yoga one February morning when I noticed it. I was coming down through chattarunga into cobra pose, and a sharp pain went through my chest when it hit the floor. I felt around and found it...a lump in my right breast. I was confused..."when did that get there?" I knew that at my yearly in January I didn't feel anything and my gyno didn't either. Weird.
Finally by about mid-April I decided to go to my doctor and have it checked out. As my wonderful husband said "Only thing we can do right now is to go to the doctor and get it figured out." So off I went to the doctor full of trepidation but hopeful it would be nothing more than a benign cyst.
My doctor checked it and said..."You need a mammogram."
The mammogram doctor said..."You need to see a surgeon."
The surgeon said..."This is nothing. Related to your reduction. We'll get it out...everything will be fine."
Would that it could...
too bad what the surgeon wound up saying in the end was "It's cancer.."
Not what you're expecting to hear at 32 years of age. Just when you're hitting your stride in your life, your job, you marriage, and your self-image you get hit with a bomb like that...nevermind the fact that I was taking a nap and was awakened with *that* news. Sheesh. :)
As the surgeon was talking to me he kept saying the same things over and over again..."Everything's going to be fine." "You're going to be fine." "Do you have any questions?...Emily?..Do you have any questions?"..."hello?"
"I'm sorry....what? The earth just shifted...let me get this straight...you're saying I have breast cancer? What stage?! What size!? What's my prognosis?! What are you/we going to do?!?!?!?!"
At least that's what I wished I said. At least what people tell me I should have said...but instead all that came out was..."Wow."..."Wow".
Going through this, in a way, with my college boyfriend's family...well let me just say I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would be the one staring chemo, radiation, sentinel node surgeries, possible mastectomy, tiredness, nausea and losing my hair (among many other *fabulous* things headed my way I'm sure...) in the face.
After I got the news, I called both my sisters and got voice mail. I then called my really good friend Dana and got voice mail and I wasn't going to call my folks at that moment in time because they were on the road to Chicago. Never was I more frustrated with technology and the fact that *everyone* has a cell phone but it always seems that when you *really really really REALLY* need them to answer it you get the voice mail! HA! It's so stupid.
My sister Julia called me back almost immediately and I actually said the words "It's cancer" out loud for the first time. Now, I will admit that I went into a very heavy and long "ugly cry" over the phone with my Julie, and I am forever eternally grateful that she endured that. I'm sure it must have been the most powerless, heart-wrenching, desperately sad things she has had to ever sit through. And for that I love her tremendously.
I then called my parents and while my dad laughed and joked about having a different phone and a different daughter up to each ear I tried to figure out an eloquent, smooth and strong way to tell my father that his youngest daughter, his baby, had breast cancer. If I remember correctly it came out as kind of a sobbing..."Daddy, it's cancer."
"Oh Dear" came the voice of my father, and the "What what, WHAT?!" of my mother in the back ground. I'm glad they didn't run off the road...I can't even imagine the shock and quite possibly the feeling that they were sucker punched when those words left my lips.
We are all still reeling from the shock a bit and have had many emotionally draining and information overloading days. I can only hope that we will begin to make some sense of this all and begin to really move forward. It's gonna be a long long year, and at times I'm sure it will be really sucky...but with the love and support of my wonderful hubby, my family, his family, all my friends, and of course my dogs Buck and Lilly, I'll make it through and be stronger for it.