I went for my annual mammogram.
Yes, as simple as that.
Feeling very healthy, just back from a week at the beach. I had been exercising and eating well and feeling the best physically I had felt for several years now. Then wham.
The initial bad mammogram report came through about 3 weeks ago...note it will be known as the bad mammogram from here on out.
It was a Friday afternoon when I received the call. I could not leave work so I asked to have the report faxed to me and I scheduled the extra views for the following Thursday. When I received the report I knew I would not dodge this bullet. Both breasts had "worrisome" and "suspicious" places. I shared with 2 nurse friends and 2 doctor friends but other than that I went about my normal weekend business.
I hosted our neighborhood supper club and a Sunday lunch group. I continued to read my book club selection The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment, which was challenging with my current circumstance, but VERY timely. I spent the weekend finding contentment and reveling in time with friends. I looked at the gatherings around our table with different eyes as I basked in the richness of community.
Finally, late Sunday evening, I told my husband. He didn't understand why I hadn't told him sooner. He would have changed his plans and stayed home. Exactly. I did not want to change his, my family's, or my friend's weekend. Also the bigger reason is that I had to let this settle in my soul and I had to be settled by God. No matter what the future held He had to be enough.
So, here I am. Three weeks later with enough mammogram views of both breasts to last a lifetime, two sets of ultrasounds with gel smeared from armpit to armpit, an MRI and two different types of biopsies in both breasts.
It appears I am very blessed to have found a very early cancer growing in the left. Just nestled there silently. Not making any fuss that is obvious. No lump that can be felt. The right looks clear but still has areas that are indeterminate short of a trip to Duke with MRI guided biopsies.
With this information it is enough for me to decide to have a double mastectomy. This will greatly reduce my recurrence risks which is a big goal! It will also eliminate radiation. Unless the doctor finds evidence of invasive cancer during the surgery I won't even need chemo!
Now you are pretty well caught up. Surgery is scheduled for October 5th. I will know more after that.
Last thing...ladies get your mammograms! Maybe don't do it around your birthday though. It did make the birthday a little less festive for myself and my twin BUT knowledge is power. Go. Be empowered.