Well I finally have a diagnosis, and unfortunately it’s not a good one. (Not that there is a good one. But if there was one, mine is definitely not one of them.)
I have Stage IV Breast Cancer. There are 3 tumors in my left breast, one of which is very large (5.6 cm) and then there are 2 smaller ones (2.2 cm and .7 cm). I also have an infected lymph node under my arm. It has also spread to my sternum and the PET scan shows a lovely pink glow in a small part of that bone on the right side. Because it has spread, there is no cure, but we will try and kill what’s there and when it comes back (which the Dr. said it will), we’ll try and kill it again.
I am having a port put in on Thursday and then will start chemo on October 21st. Sometime in the next couple weeks I’ll also need to have a heart test done, but that is not scheduled yet.
I got a call from Dr. MacAbee (my primary care Dr.) at 9am this morning. I did not expect to hear anything today and was so surprised to get her call. The biopsy came back positive and it is malignant, both the tumor and the lymph node. She said it’s Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. I was able to call the breast surgeon’s office and get an appointment for 1 pm TODAY instead of having to wait until Monday morning. 🙂 Praise God for that opening!
After workout (which I had to miss because of the biopsy on Monday), Jen stopped by with a latte and a muffin and I was able to tell her in person. We chatted about it for a bit and then more about life. We spent some time in prayer. I’m so glad she came over!
I finally made it to biopsy day. I started the day with a haircut to get ready for the cruise next week and did a little shopping. Then lunch with Tom who was working from home. Glad I had a busy morning to keep my mind occupied. I didn’t sleep well last night. This morning was full of text messages with scripture and encouragement from friends. 🙂
The biopsy hurt a lot more than I thought it would. The lidocaine they gave me for the local didn’t get deep enough into the tumor and the first needle REALLY hurt. She injected more lidocaine through the needle which took some of the pain away after a few minutes. The second biopsy on the swollen lymph node only hurt when they were numbing it. The biopsy pieces were the size of grains of rice.
It’s strange having the girls gone at school so long each day. I have a long list of things I’d like to get done and yesterday was a great productive today. However, this afternoon, I really feel like doing nothing. So here I sit on the bed, doing just that.
It was a long weekend, not because of anything that happened, but just because of the news and the fact it kept coming to my mind. Life will never be the same. Never again will I be able to go to the Dr. and answer no to all of the medical history questions like I did last Wednesday.
I felt like I was walking around in a daze. I just have this feeling of heaviness and depression. Different things keep coming to my mind and I try and get them out right away, but then a new one will pop in my head. Grrrr! I think not know the exact details of what is wrong is that hardest. I’m praying for a cancellation so I can get an earlier biopsy. It’s hard to wait this long and then know I have to wait a few days after that for the results.
I’m grateful for the texts, phone calls and emails from friends and family, just letting us know that they care and are here for us.
I’ve had a stomach ache all day. Yesterday I felt nauseous all day, and today just have this feeling in the pit of my stomach that doesn’t go away. My mind just knows something is wrong, even if I feel fine. I hope that goes away as I get used to the idea. It still seems so foreign. I find myself just walking around the house, wondering what to do. (Part of that could also be that since the girls have been back in school for 4 days, the house is cleaner and I’m more organized . . .therefore I have less to do on the weekend.)
I went to workout this morning. It always challenges me. I love the friendships I have built with the women there. But of course my mind goes straight to wondering how long I will be able to keep going to it. Even just wondering if I can go the Wednesday after my biopsy next Monday. The silly things I wonder about!! I guess there’s always modifications as I need it.
I wonder how my Dad is doing with the news. He has lost 2 parents, 2 inlaws and a wife, all to different types of cancer. And now his daughter tells him she most likely has it? 19 hours is too far to be away from him right now . . .
Finding out you have cancer is never easy.
Neither is finding out someone you love has cancer.
I will never forget sitting in the oncologist’s office in my early 20’s with my Mom and Dad finding out all the details of my Mom’s Ocular Melanoma. I remember asking the Dr. if it was hereditary and if I should be worried about getting it. He said it was not, but that 3 out of 4 people would be diagnosed with some sort of cancer in their lifetime.
I always figured one day I would get the news that I have cancer, I just never thought I would be 41 (41 and 1 day to be exact.)
In 2014, I found a lump in my right breast and had some swollen lymph nodes under my arm. I had a mammogram and ultrasound done and everything was clear. A friend told me she had similar issues but they were related to caffeine and when she cut that out, they went away. So I decided to give that a try and sure enough, they went away. The Dr. said they were nothing to worry about and I could drink caffeine and just know what would happen if I did.
I stayed off of it for a while, but eventually started drinking coffee again, as I missed having it in the morning. So a few months ago, when I noticed a lump in my other breast, I didn’t think much of it. In August I decided to ditch caffeine again so that it would go away and also made an appointment for a physical, since I hadn’t had one in a couple years.