I wrote a story about mammograms on October 31 to remind women to get them done annually. It was supposed to be like any other story that I wrote- with a beginning and an end. A set date that it would go to print and then I would move on to the next story.
But this story that I did for Breast Cancer Awareness Month is still going on.
To recap, they found something in my left breast when I had the mammogram done. It is so small that I can’t even feel it. They called me back for a second mammogram to get a better look at it and then sent me for an ultrasound.
This past Monday morning my phone rang. I was surprised to hear that it was my doctor. Not just my doctor’s office, but the doctor himself. He told me he wanted to send me to a surgeon. Whatever this is we need to figure it out and not wait and see if it changes in six months. Let’s stay ahead of the game he said. I agreed.
The surgeon’s office called me the next day and scheduled an appointment for me to come in tomorrow afternoon (I know- on a Saturday go figure).
I am not really nervous and really haven’t thought too much about it. The upside to having six children is that I can throw myself into staying so busy with them that I don’t have to think about the stuff that scares me. But the fear is there all the time. And I am scared. The fear seems to creep in about 1 or 2 in the morning when the house is quiet and everyone is still….everything is calm except for my mind.
That is when the thoughts start rolling through my mind, “what if I have breast cancer? would I want a lumpectomy or a mastectomy?; what if I need radiation or chemotherapy?; how will by babies handle this?; it’s probably nothing right?; it will be nothing right?”
I ask these questions and then there is silence. The unknown, the lack of answers and understanding, it is terrifying. This was supposed to be a story to help women remember to get mammograms. It wasn’t supposed to find something wrong with me. What if I do have breast cancer?
Hopefully I will get some answers tomorrow when I go see the surgeon at 1:50. Maybe this story that I started about the importance of mammograms will finally be over and it was just a scare. Maybe the story of the importance of mammograms is just beginning for me maybe it will be the story that saved my life.
One more day-I can quiet my thoughts and my worries for one more day. Then we will have some answers or at least a plan. I can do this one more day. That will be my mantra until then- “I can do this one more day.”
You can reach Blythe at firstname.lastname@example.org