Thursday, May 17, 2018

May 9, a story in two parts. Part 2: And then this happened.

No sooner had we started driving away from the graduation lunch, my cellphone rang. Anyone who knows me knows that, in true introvert style, I never answer my phone. I figure that's what voicemail is for. But this call I took, because I knew I needed to. It was the radiologist who'd performed the stereotactic needle biopsy the morning before, to say he was very sorry, they weren't expecting the results they got, but I have invasive breast cancer.
I won't lie, I was gobsmacked. I'd been told that the mammogram showed new calcifications that had a 20% chance of indicating the relatively safe and contained DCIS, and that small possibility I was prepared for. Not the invasive ductal carcinoma even the radiologist was surprised by. And yes, I admit I ran through the "how is this possible?" questions in my head. I'm thin, I eat a healthy diet, I avoid processed foods, I exercise, I don't drink heavily, I don't use drugs, I don't smoke. But you know what? If I've learned anything in my life, it's that fair's got nothing to do with it. Asking "why me?" is nonsensical. After all, why not me? My husband and sister and I came home and cried, and then wiped away our tears before my younger son and his fiancĂ©e stopped by to pick up his gift and have a celebratory drink with us. It was his day, and I wasn't going to spoil it.
On Mother's Day, my son and his partner invited us over for brunch and afterwards I told them what I knew so far. And then came home to call my older son and tell him. Those were hard conversations and it pains me to make my kids sad and scared. But they needed to know and also to be reassured that I plan to do everything I can to get well. So that's where it stands. I had an MRI Monday morning and have made myself a little crazy reading the path reports and learning how extensive it is. The oncology team will review my case tomorrow and then we meet with my surgeon next Tuesday to talk about what options I might have.
In the meantime, please send some good thoughts my way.
"Well, life has a funny way of sneaking up on you
When you think everything's okay and everything's going right.
And life has a funny way of helping you out when
You think everything's gone wrong and everything blows up
In your face." 

(Alanis Morrisette)

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