Thursday, August 9, 2012

Call me, maybe!?!

It's been 66 hours since I had my annual Mammogram/MRI.  This is what the inside of my brain sounds like:

Why haven't they called me?  Is something wrong?  Why does the hospital run so many commercials during the Olympics?  Is it to keep reminding me that they haven't called?  Is not calling yet good news or bad news?  Google "Mammogram Photos."  Should I call them?  Again, with the damn commercials.  Maybe I should read the Message Boards on FORCE.  No, that'll just remind they haven't called.  Maybe no call is good news, if it was bad news they would want to talk to me right away, right?  Why haven't you called me yet?  Google "Breast MRI Photos."  Nope, no missed calls.  Okay, think about something other than boobs.  God, my bra is really annoying me right now. Ah!  Bras and boobs!  Okay, phone's ringing.  Not them.  Why haven't they called me?  Read the news, yeah the news.  Damnit!  Another Beaumont ad!  Stop advertising and just call me!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

A (stolen) diddy about Mammograms

For years and years they told me,
Be careful of your breasts.
Don’t ever squeeze or bruise them.
And give them monthly tests.
So I heeded all their warnings,
And protected them by law.
Guarded them very carefully,
And I always wore my bra.
After 30 years of astute care,
My gyno, Dr Pruitt,
Said I should get a Mammogram

“OK,” I said, “let’s do it.”
“Stand up here real close” she said,
(She got my boob in line),
“And tell me when it hurts,” she said,
“Ah yes! Right there, that’s fine.”
She stepped upon a pedal,
I could not believe my eyes!
A plastic plate came slamming down,
My hooters in a vise!
My skin was stretched and mangled,
From underneath my chin.
My poor boob was being squashed,
To Swedish Pancake thin.
Excruciating pain I felt,
Within it’s viselike grip.
A prisoner in this vicious thing,
My poor defenseless tit!

“Take a deep breath,” she said to me,
Who does she think she’s kidding?!?
My chest is mashed in her machine,
And woozy I am getting.
“There, that’s good,” I heard her say,
(The room was slowly swaying.)
“Now, let’s have a go at the other one.”
Have mercy, I was praying.
It squeezed me from both up and down,
It squeezed me from both sides.
I’ll bet SHE’S never had this done,
To HER tender little hide.
Next time that they make me do this,
I will request a blindfold.
I have no wish to see again,
My knockers getting steam rolled.
If I had no problem when I came in,
I surely have one now.
If there had been a cyst in there,
It would have gone “ker-pow!”
This machine was created by a man,
Of this, I have no doubt.
I’d like to stick his balls in there,
And, see how THEY come out!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Family Onset Age - Insert horror movie soundtrack here!

Well, I'm in the weeks leading up to my annual exam.  This year we're doing the mammogram and MRI at the same time.  Why?  I'm not sure, but it's what my NP and Dr ordered.

Every year I'm stressed out, high anxiety, on full alert in the weeks, days, and hours leading up to my appointment.  This year you can multiply that by a kajillion because this year, I've reached my family onset age.

I'm hoping my ability to only compartmentalize my feelings kicks into overdrive and calms my crazy ass down!  I've been able to only think about the big BC once a month when I do my SBE, let's see if I can make that compartment even larger for this looming day.

T Minus 23 days till I spend a thousand bucks to not have cancer!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011


So, I haven't blogged in a while.  Which is a good thing, because I wasn't allowing my risk to take over my thoughts and my life.

Then I discovered my ex, THE ex's, wife (whom I adore) was diagnosed with BC AND is High Risk only to further learn she is BRCA+.  Talk about close to home.  Then I became curious:

  •  is she on as strict of a surveillance regimen as I am?
  • did her doctors inform her of her options?
  • did they know the severity of the gene?  
Then I became pissed thinking she might not have received the same severity of surveillance that I receive and that all women, every woman, especially THIS woman should receive that same level of attention.

Then I received my pretty pink postcard letting me know they're scheduling January.  And I still haven't called.  Why?  Because I'm scared.  Because this shit never ends.  Because every once in a while it feels better to put my head in a hole and act like I know nothing.  But her response echoes my reasoning for testing even if my risk is lower:
Knowledge is power and as scary as it is being in the driver seat beats being taken down the road by cancer.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Surveillance is a lot like Prostitution. . . .

At the end of the day we're both paying someone else to fondle our goodies and keeping our fingers crossed for negative test results ;).


Monday, June 20, 2011

Update: Surveillance-versary!

So, I'm a big fat loser.  My surveillance-versary was June 10th!  I guess in the midst of not obsessing over my high-risk, I stopped thinking a little too much about it!

Here's the other part I realized:  I haven't met a single goal I laid out for myself since my initial meeting with Heather.  Not a one.  I haven't lost weight. I haven't stopped eating red meat. I didn't start taking vitamins. I didn't change my diet. I didn't drink less . . . well, let's not get ahead of ourselves here, I never did promise that one!

So at the risk of being accused of having a defeatist attitude (again) here is what I have accomplished:
1.  I had one Mammogram
2.  I had one MRI.
3.  I had one Biopsy.
4.  I performed at least one self breast exam each month (probably 2 realistically)
6.  I tested for the BRCA gene
*these are important because early detection saves lives
7.  I told my story.
8.  I started going to local FORCE meetings.
9.  I met other young, high risk women by telling my story.
10. I finally walked in a breast cancer walk that I raised money for
11. I tried to reach out to my extended family about our risk
12. I had researched enough and learned enough to help my sister begin her journey.
*these are important because many women who are high risk do not know it, or do not know how to proceed
13.  I quit smoking (I hope, it's only been a month so I'm afraid to brag).
14.  I limited my weekly red meat intake, for the most part:).  Hey, I'm a sucker for a cheeseburger!
15.  I joined a gym and partake on occasion.
and most importantly . . . 

Here's to an even more successful year 2!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

It's my Surveillance-versary!

So, I just realized, it's nearly July.  July to many people is Independence Day, summer vacation, barbeque's, camping, 90 degree weather, boating, ridiculous air conditioning bills.  To me July is my annual mammogram. 

My annual mammogram also marks the completion of the first year in my life as a high risk woman.  So I survived year one.  With me I take at least 12 self breast exams, an uninformed negative test result, one tiny scar on my right boob, a lead marker near said scar, nearly $1,5000 in related bills and enough tears shed to flood the entire Metropolitan area.

And, because my first MRI (aka, January) came back with an area of suspicion that needed to be biopsied, I need to run the MRI again.  Hopefully on the same day.

The average person may not think this deal sounds so bad; 2 tests a year, 6 months apart and a doctors office visit in between.  What the average person doesn't realize is I finally feel like I got my head back on straight again.  I don't think about my status weekly, daily, hourly, any longer.  I wasn't researching everything boob related.  I stopped dreaming up my eventual PBM or RX.  I stopped practicing the speech I would have to give my friends, family and co-workers. 

But now.  Now that July is staring me straight on, I feel the beginning pangs of dread, of terror coming back.  They get caught in my throat late at night.  They subconsciously make my hands linger longer over my breasts suspicious of every change.  They haunt me.  They whisper to me.  They follow me.  It's a disease you can't see, that dread.  And it's back, just like it promised.  Six months later.