Friday, December 30, 2011

Breast Cancer Only Happens To Other Women? - Not So!

There is never a good time for a cancer diagnosis but if you're going to get one at least let it be a time when life is at its most hectic. For me, it was Christmas week 2011, still really only days ago when I got the results of my biopsy which was Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (IDC), a type of Breast Cancer.

Unlike some women who find the lump when either showering or during self-examination my discovery came when I experienced intense sharp wave-like pain in my right breast. After it eased I decided, reluctantly, to feel around (I stopped checking years ago because I foolishly thought if you look for something chances are you'll find it, how stupid can you be!!). Almost immediately my finger hit on the bump which actually felt like a very large peanut. I still remember the terror I felt, within seconds I had myself dead and buried.

When sanity returned I decided to say nothing to anyone just yet because I thought all it might be is just a cyst which could disappear within a few days, I would explain all later. This all happened on Sunday, 27th November 2011.

With no sign of my lump dissolving and my nerves completely shattered, on Tuesday, 6th December I rang BreastCheck, The National Screening Programme in Ireland where I've been having my two-yearly mammograms since I was 50. As soon as I explained my situation a mammogram appointment was made for the next day at 2.15pm. Relief doesn't come anywhere near what I felt.

Wednesday, 7th December 2011:
We have recently bought a beautiful apartment in one of our favourite locations in Dublin and as hubby was continuing to get it ready for Christmas I insisted he not accompany me for my mammogram. Always curious to know the truth I begged the radiographer to put me out of my misery. She did so by confirming my worst fears, yes there was a lump but the images still needed to be checked to decide if a call-back was necessary. I would hear either way by the following Wednesday.

Monday, 12th December 2011:
Received the letter from BreastCheck requesting a call-back for Wednesday, 14th December. Expected to hear it was just a cyst and nothing more sinister.

Next blog post..... ultra sound and biopsy to determine size of breast lump and remove cells for examination.

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