Everyone hates going to the gynecologist…it’s never much fun to have someone poking around between your legs (okay well almost never, LOL…couldn’t resist that one!) and asking you highly personal questions. And even though I work in a gynecology office, I am no exception to this rule. But it is one of those things that you have to do. So yesterday off I went. Everything was going swimmingly…and then she mentioned the dreaded “L” word…
Midwife (no I’m not pregnant…but I used a midwife when I delivered Coen and it just stuck!) as she is doing the breast exam – “So do you do monthly self-exams?”
Me (proudly) – “uh-huh…but I guess I don’t really even know what I’m looking for…a pea shaped thing? an irregular mass of some sort?”
Midwife, guiding my hand over my heart – “Well this is a lump here.”
Me, waiting for her to say something like “but it’s normal to feel this kind of lump” or “this would be one that you wouldn’t worry about”
Midwife, silence for a while…finishes the exam – “So I want you to go get this checked out.”
Me, starting to really freak out – “okay…”
Midwife, pulls out a referral slip…you know the one with the ridiculous drawing of boobies on it…and marks the spot with a big dot. This is where I start to lose it…then she writes in the comment section “Breast mass”…okay now I’m just doing everything I can think of to try and remain calm and not let the tears that have filled up my eyes pour over onto her paper. – “So I want you to go get an ultrasound…and a mammogram…and I would also recommend that you get a second opinion…whatever the result of those tests are. ”
Me, I really can’t say much at this point, I take the referral and leave, walking to the sanctuary of my car…where I promptly start hyper-ventilating.
Even though nothing is really known at this point and I know that many women find lumps and are totally fine…I can’t help but think of a girl I know…who was pregnant at the same time I was, same age, a mother…who is battling breast cancer. I drive home crying, luckily Coen and Dave were out having dinner together so I had time to collect myself…I didn’t want to freak either of them out.
I turned on the computer and googled “breast lump” then shut it off after I read 80% of breast lumps found turn out to be nothing” so 20% turn out to be something?? I decided I really didn’t like those odds and spent the night trying not to think about it (yeah right!) and trying to believe my husband when he said it was nothing and that I’d be fine.
So I was lucky enough to score an appointment for today after work with the ARNP consultant for all the breast surgeons where I work…she did a thorough exam…sat with me through the ultrasound and was very reassuring. I am young, I don’t have any risk factors for breast cancer…and they didn’t see anything worrisome on either of the tests. She wants be to come back in three months just to make sure there are no changes…but she said she literally didn’t see anything, no mass or lump…so is positive that everything is fine.
The last 24 hours have been a rollercoaster of emotions…and I’m glad to get of that ride for awhile.
Phew!!!!! Well if you stayed with this post long enough to get to the bottom you deserve an award! So I will give you one…go give your wife/mom/sister/daughter/friends a great big hug…and make sure they are doing everything they can to stay healthy.