I now have a plan of attack after having my MRI and meeting with my doctor. Now to face this wicked thing called cancer head on!!
I had to be at Lewisburg Evangelical at 6:45 on Wednesday, January 13th. The roads were horrendous from the snow squalls that came through the night before. It was the first time I finally got to test our Madza SUV in the bad weather. It passed with flying colors. Of course, you should have seen my husband David and Brad at 11 o’clock the previous night trying to move David’s little sports car, the Subaru BRZ out from behind my vehicle parked in the garage. Yea, his car isn’t good at all in the snow/ice. Leave it to the woman to suggest moving Elyses’s 4 wheel drive jeep out from the other side of the driveway and moving the BRZ to her spot instead of trying to get it all the way out of the driveway. Anyone who knows our house, knows our driveway is not at all steep, but it doesn’t take much snow/ice to make it hard to get out of sometimes. I have to keep my sense of humor now and looking back on this , I crack up laughing. “Brad!! It’s sliding!! Woah, don’t smash it into the wall, I’m trading the damn thing in next week!”
Well, I finally got the MRI that was scheduled for 7AM done – at 1:30 in the afternoon. They had issues with the machine and needed to call in the engineer to fix it – which he did. I joked again that day sitting in Bucknell’s Barnes & Noble bookstore trying to waste more time, that if we won the powerball jackpot that night, I would buy Lewisburg another MRI machine. The tech told us that she would keep in touch with us about the MRI problem, so she pulled the IV from my arm and we left. David & I enjoyed breakfast in the hospital’s dining room first, then we went shopping. We hit Walmart and every antique place in Lewisburg looking for a certain piece of furniture David needed for his office. We finally found what he needed in the last place. Then we went to hang out at the Starbucks at Bucknell’s bookstore after buying some t-shirts. We’re proud to represent Elyse’s future school!
I apologize to the lady whom I was curt with there. I went back up to the counter because David’s frappuccino had absolutely no flavor. As I was patiently waiting, while the lady in front of me paid for something with all pennies, nickels and dimes and then proceeded to chit -chat about something that didn’t seem important at all with the 2 young girls working, I lost my patience. The girl asked me if something was wrong with my drink and I asked her if there was a syrup they put into it, because it tasted like ice without any flavor. She immediately said she would remake it. But the lady in front of me said, “Sorry, I’m just having a problem here.” I’m thinking “Lady, tell me about problems today.”But I didn’t say anything, thanked the girl for remaking the drink and went to sit with David.
It wasn’t the way I wanted to spend time with my husband (who wasn’t able to go to work at all that day), but it was necessary.
I was just calling my doctor around 1:15 when I got a beep on my phone for another call. Yes, it was the tech from MRI saying the MRI machine was fixed and I could come and that the doctor’s office would accommodate my later then regularly scheduled 1:30 appointment. So finally, around 1:30 and another round of IV pokes I got the MRI.
It wasn’t quite as bad as I thought, very loud and noisy ( even with the country music I asked them to play). But as they were pulling me out of the tube, the one girl said to me, “It’s not the most comfortable thing to go through, you can tell a man designed it.” For anyone not aware of a breast MRI, you have to lay face down on a padded surface that your breasts can hang down. Yep, definitely a man’s design. Thankfully, it wasn’t too long – about 20 minutes.
David and I headed right over to the breast center for my appointment with Dr. Turner. He checked my biopsy site for infection and all was well there. Then we sat in the conference room along with Michelle from the Breast Center. The first thing my doctor said to me was , “I’m sorry you have to go through this.” Then he proceeded and went over EVERYTHING. He went over the entire pathology report and explained everything, plus all the options, treatments etc. Again, there was so much information to absorb. It made me feel for anyone who don’t have close people to help them and support them through this.
I have Stage 1 invasive lobular carcinoma – the second most common type of breast cancer. Invasive means the cancer has invaded or spread to surrounding breast tissues. Lobular means it started in the milk-producing lobules which empty out into the ducts that carry the milk to the nipple. Carcinoma refers to any cancer that begins in the skin or other tissues that cover internal organs.
Without getting into all the other medical lingo, I do have a lot of positives going for me. I think the biggest relief is the 98% survival rate for my type of cancer, with treatment. I also asked the doctor if this happened since my last mammogram/ultrasound in December 2014 ( both of which were normal). He told me no, it was probably lurking for 8-9 years before the tumor(s) could be seen and/or felt. Remember I didn’t feel anything! It’s a scary thought when you think about it.
So, now there is a plan.
I will have to have a mastectomy for the left breast. The right one is fine – If it ain’t broke don’t fix it! Unfortunately , a lumpectomy is not in my best interest. I have 2 tumors spaced too far apart and one being too close to the nipple, that they would have to remove too much breast tissue to keep the normal appearance. So, a mastectomy it is, with reconstruction at the same time (which I’m a candidate for). It’s a heck of a way to get a boob job.
Sorry, I’m trying to keep my sense of humor through this. I know that this is a terrible disease and there are many who are just struggling to survive and don’t care how they look. When it comes down to it, I will do anything to get the cancer out of my body. I want to survive. I don’t care if it’s through surgery, radiation, chemo, treatment drugs or whatever. I have too much to live for. I want to see my kids graduate not only from high school, but college, get jobs, get married, have their own kids. I want to enjoy time with David and be able to do some traveling. I want to spend time with my doggies, my family and friends.
It is truly amazing the people that have been in touch with me already through text messages, Facebook (yes, it can be a good thing!), emails, phone calls etc. There are people that I knew, ones that I really didn’t know well and then ones from nowhere to support not only me, but my family. I know this is tough for them also.
Now that I’m over the shock of the diagnosis and have the plan, I can face this head on and win!! I know I will have good days and bad ones, but one thing is for sure – I am lucky and blessed beyond anything that I could have imagined!