Thursday, April 8, 2010

Curve Ball

You know how life throws you curve balls? Well, I thought the whole Easter Debacle was mine.

Then I got an even bigger one.

I lost my mom to breast cancer. She died at the age of 53. She lost her mother to breast cancer. She died at the age of 53. Five of my grandmothers sisters have had breast cancer. One has survived. Wish you were me? Didn't think so.

When I had a breast reduction three years ago at the age of 34 my plastic surgeon was shocked that I hadn't started getting mammograms. I told him that every year when I went to the gynecologist I would ask when I needed to start them. He would always say at age 40. I would then remind him of my family history and he'd still say 40. The plastic surgeon told me it was absolutely necessary to have one before the reduction to get my baseline. As I checked out the cashier mentioned that my insurance probably wouldn't pay because I wasn't 40 yet. When I told why I'd started she said that still wasn't enough reason for my insurance. She then asked if I had breast cancer in my family. I let her in on the 411. She said she'd have a doctor call me. When the head doctor called she asked if I'd like to join their study group. I of course said yes. Well, because of an insurance change shortly after that it wasn't possible. But I went again for my mammogram the next year I was asked again. The doctor assured me she would convince my insurance.

And she did.

Yesterday was the day for my first MRI. I have that once a year and six months later a mammogram. A week out I was thinking it was a simple climb in the tube and lie still MRI. But then I got a letter from them. I had to have an IV. Yuck. I am not an easy stick and I hate needles. I always get through it, but it's not my favorite thing. So I went in a little jittery. I had two wonderful nurses who put me at ease and after three different tries in three different places I finally had an IV. Oh, and blood drawn. That hadn't been in the letter. Because they were inserting dye into me they had to check my kidneys to make sure they could get the dye out. I passed with flying colors. I went into the MRI and spent 28 minutes listening to muffled music and horrendous startling sounds. Those things are so annoying! I did like that this one (compared to one I had on my wrist) had me lying on my stomach. It was a lot like a massage table with a hole for my head. But I've never seen a massage table with boobie holes:c)

Four hours after my appointment I got a phone call from the radiologist. That can't be good. She said there was an area that worried her. It was only my first MRI! They weren't supposed to find anything! I guess they didn't know that. She said she wanted do an ultrasound to check it out. She then asked when I was available. Hello? I would run there if needed as soon as possible. Luckily they had an 8:30 appointment today.

I'd put on Facebook that I was having an MRI and I was worried I was overwhelmed with 13 comments from friends and family supporting me. Five hours later when I put that I had to go for an ultrasound on a questionable area I had 25 comments saying they'd be praying for me. I went to bed last night with such a peace about a situation that should have had me freaked completely out. I know it was the sweet people lifting me in prayer.

This morning I was thrilled to report that I have a fatty deposit wrapped around scar tissue from my reduction. Can I get an Amen for fat?? I've never been so happy to have a fat problem! I was shocked to have 39 likes and comments on my 'All Clear!' status. I have been in tears so much in the last 33 hours and it hasn't been because I've been scared or worried, it's been because of the outpouring of love I have felt. From my Aunt Marcia who sent a text almost as soon as I posted something, to my aunt and grandmother who called as I was driving to the ultrasound...the friend who whispered across the room during a meeting today that she'd woken up at 2:45 and started praying for me...and the friend I ran into at Hobby Lobby who said she'd been so relieved to read that it wasn't bad....I have been carried. I can never thank the people in my life enough. I'd be lost without them.

And to the sweet friends here who commented on my Easter Debacle posts, thank you. I am still overdoing it daily but that's because this is the busiest time of year for me. But each night around 7 I am able to sit down and completely relax and take care of it. I am also anticipating an uneventful weekend that should be just what the doctor ordered.

Hopefully tomorrow we will return to our regularly scheduled funny, picture filled posts. If there are any more curve balls headed my way I plan to duck. Just hope I don't get goosed.

Love you all!


Robin said...

So glad everything is ok!

I've been having mammograms since I was 20 when I had a benign lump removed. My insurance has always covered because of my history (my mom died at 33). My techs have always been surprised to see someone young, but I'm guessing they won't be anymore since I'm 40 now!

Robin said...

Woo Hoo!!!

Martha said...

Way to take control of your health! Just imagine the fear you would have if you weren't having these tests done. As scary as the potential for cancer can be...knowing you have the all clear right now is so rewarding.

You are doing the best thing you can for yourself, your girls and women everywhere by taking part in this study. Way to show cancer who's boss!!!

miruspeg said...

Steph I agree with Martha by taking these steps you are showing cancer who is boss.
And be surrounded by such wonderful supportive friends is such an added bonus.

I hope you are keeping your stress down to a minimum as well because I know for a fact that is what cancer feeds on.

So whatever curve balls are thrown at you tell them to piss off because you have a whole lot of living to do.

Love you dearly.
Peg xxxx

jean said...

Catching up on my blog reading & just now reading this... SO glad that everything is okay! Now if we could just say that same thing for the rest of your body... :-)