And so it begins . . . again
Updated: May 18, 2020
I'm coming up on 6 years cancer free. I'm to schedule my annual mammogram in January. I call to schedule and am told that since I am to have a 3D mammogram - it will take 3 months to get in. I'm set for the end of March but due to some issues with my mother, I miss two appointments and finally have my 3D mammogram in April. I go to the hospital in Grosse Pointe for a mammogram and I bring Riley with me. She has asked me questions prior so I want her to see there is nothing to fear. Besides we haven't lunched or explored the area in a while. 🙂 Mammogram complete. I bring her in to see the machine. The tech shows her the image of my right breast. All good and on to lunch. I receive a call a few days later. I need to come back for another look. Yep that little black cloud has just started hovering over me again. I knew then that I would be having another dance with the Big "C".
I schedule my bibosy, this time I go to the Royal Oak campus. I figure maybe a change of venue would bring me luck. I have a a female doctor and a Russian nurse. I have to climb up onto the platform, lay down and put the "tatas" into the holes. The dreaded shot to numb my breast happens and the procedure begins. This time we talk, mindless conversation. The nurse tells us the story of her mother-in-law who wouldn't accept her marriage. She didn't acknowledge her until she had her first son. She opened the door one day and there was her mother-in-law on her knees right in front of her door begging for forgiveness. Talk about dramatic! I enjoy the banter as it keeps my mind off what we're doing. We come to the part where there's a popping sound and I'm not to move. My nurse makes sure I won't move as she literally throws her body on top of mine. Biopsy completed - now the wait.
I get the call from Dr. Ruark on Friday, May 12th. It's cancer she explains in her gentle way. My response - "Okay let's talk next steps". (Looking back I can't believe that was my first response!) I make an appointment for Monday at 12:45. Now I'll be honest I didn't remember what time my appointment is because all I hear is cancer. Bob comes in and I break down sobbing. Yes, I knew I had it but there was a tiny part of me that was hoping I was wrong. I really don't want to do this again. The timing sucks!!! There is never a good time for cancer but Nick and Molly are getting married in August. Riley is scheduled to study abroad in Barcelona. Anthony is finally in his dream job. My kids are happy. FUCK! Yes I said FUCK! (There are times that that word just fits the situation and this is one of them)
Life has just stopped and stood very still. I look at Bob and apologize. I'm so sorry to put him through this again. His response - "We fought it before together, we'll fight it again." We hug and hold on to each other. Each lost in our thoughts on the journey we're about to embark on.
Bob has to leave for an appointment and doesn't want to go. I tell him I'll be fine, alone time is what I need to process this information. After he leaves, I sit by myself. and think about my future. My mind is running away with me. I find myself going to the worst case scenario. Sadness is overtaking me. I realize, I have a choice to make - have a pity party for myself or "suck it up princess" and deal with it. I decide to suck it up and dance. I go to the kitchen and turn on the tunes and dance my heart out. Playing several times over Earth Wind and Fire - September. After a while, I actually find myself smiling and feeling a little free. The more I dance, the happier I feel. Bob calls me at one point - I see his number and I hold the phone to the music - Don't Worry Be Happy is playing. Yes, we need to not let worry or let fear take over - we need to be grateful and happy just where we are. I had met with Dr. Ruark before the biopsy and we've discussed next steps if it is cancer. I want both breasts removed. I'm done with this set. Bob's response "I've always been a leg and ass man myself." God I love this man!
We make the decision as we did last time to hold off on telling our children until we have a plan in place. It gives us time to process this news incredible curve ball life has just given me. It's 2017 and I have breast cancer again. Next step getting the plan for another dance with the Big "C".