Monday, November 16, 2015
Day 16: Pennies, Breasts and Meds
Two years ago today, I was in Washington. Last year today, it was snowing. Today, I found out that I am going to live.
It's kind of a long choppy story.....bear with me (at first I wrote bare with me.....I realize that was a totally different thing!) because I need to write it down so I remember.
I had a breast reduction on 9/29/15. Nobody knew, at the time, that the surgery was bigger than what we knew.
*The morning of the surgery....a penny flew out of my dryer. The dryer was bought used a few months ago. The penny was in the innards. Really....it was inside the dryer guts and came out when I pulled out the filter. It came out all shiny silver around the edges due to it being stuck in there. No telling how many times the drum tumbled around and around wearing on it.
Camille, bless her little heart, took me for surgery and stayed overnight with me. I am thinking that the tribe all called NOT IT and Camille was last. Anywhoooo..... The anesthesiologist got ready to put a shot in my IV. She said it was like a liquid margarita. I thought *how strange! I thought all margaritas were liquid.* Those were my last thoughts until I was at the hotel.
Camille assures me I high fived and proclaimed my love for everyone while they were wheeling me down the hall. I plead the fifth.
The surgery went great! They took off 2 pounds from each breast. My back problems disappeared over night.
*That night, I found a penny by my bed.
I had a visit with my surgeon the next morning and was cleared to go home with an appointment to come in on October 6th for my one week check up. I was told I would just see a nurse. The only problem I have with his office is everyone weighs like 105lbs and are cute and perky. Even when they wear gray, they look bright and adorable. The first time I was there, their little gray cover your bits robe did not contain me. I went happily on my way....I had a wedding to get ready for on the 10th! On Monday, the doctor's office called and rescheduled my appointment to October 7th. I'm thinking...no problemo! I will be there.
On the 7th I go in and his assistant takes out 14 stitches on both sides. Then she tells me that the doc will come in and see if she missed any. Well, in walks my surgeon. Y'all would love him. He is like 17 years old and wears seersucker suits and glass cuff links that I am sure cost more than my little Honda fit. He finds one more on each side for a total of 30. (Sue...I have not forgotten you! There is still a prize in the works.) He says....Let's talk.
Me in my head: *on no no no...that does not sound like a you won a trip to disney land talk. I thought about hopping off the table and running eat bread sticks at Fazolis. However, my balance was still sucking at this point and I did not think my hopping off of anything would end well.) *blink* *blink* *blink*
Him: We did biopsies on the tissue removed from your breast. The right is just great! But...the left...
Me in my head: *DAMMIT the left has always tried to get me* (ie lump removed 10 years ago and biopsy earlier this year...dead fat. There is a fancy word for it but I looked it up...dead fat. Just me being glamorous.)
Him: *I have never ever seen this before. The mass removed from your left breast contained several per-cancerous cells. This type of cancer cells would have never shown up in a mammogram. (Side note....I am vigilant about getting mammograms every year.) The timing of this is incredible. If you have not had a breast reduction, this would have spread. By the time you suspected you had any problems, it would have been too late. This reduction honestly saved your life. I am getting you an appointment with an oncologist. I do not know what he will do. He may feel the need to go in and remove more, he may run test or he might simply but you on meds. No matter what happens....know that this surgery saved your life.
I told y'all they were trying to kill me.
I left his office in a daze. It is 3 days before Cade and Katie's wedding. I do not want to drop this on everyone and that just be a haze over the wedding. So, I sat in my car. I called Camille. I cried out to part of my tribe. And then...I kept my mouth shut.
LOL people think that I tell everything all the time. Trust me, I can be quiet.
I cried coming home. In my brain, I begin to figure out what I would want my children (Camille, Cade and Katie) and my grandchildren (Joey, Jarrod, Vinny and Paisley) to know if I died...what did I need to teach them.
Then I thought....screw that. I have too much left to do.
After the wedding, I told Cade and Katie. I eventually told my mom. THAT went MUCH better than expected.
My tribe stopped my free fall and held on to me until I could stand steady on my feet again and wear real bras.
For reals, I had lousy balance for awhile. Those 4 pounds threw everything off.
I went to see the Oncologist. His first words were *you don't have cancer*. I instantly liked the man. He told me that it was per-cancerous cells and how the surgery saved my life and how he was going to order an MRI and put me on Tamoxifen and watch me closely.
I just grinned goofily and listened to Ellen DeGenesas singing in my head *you don't have cancer....you don't have cancer*.
She was wearing argyle socks.
Last Monday, I had a breast MRI. I laid on my tummy and my breast stuck through little especially designed holes. Seriously, the male tech started to tell me how to lay and then realized it was all self explanatory. I had headphones that blasted the oldies and there was a mirror under me so that I could see him. That was freaking awesome! I did not panic, freak out or bite anyone. The only time my anxiety almost got the better of me was when I watched the tech, another woman dressed like him and a man in scrubs, scrutinize one of the screens for a long time. They would point at something and talk. I had to stop looking at them.
I closed my eyes and pretended that their food list for their Thanksgiving party was just posted and they were discussing what they were going to sign up for and who they were going to bring.
Yes Siree Bob...be amazed by my big brain. It can turn on a dime.
Today I could not stand it anylonger and called to see if they had the results yet.
There are no cancer cells in either breast. I am to continue to take my Tamoxifen and see my oncologist in 3 months.
Sweet little 8 pound baby Jesus in the manger. Thank you.
So, two years ago today, I was in Washington...a state that I love. One year ago today, it was snowing....I do so long the snow. Today I found out I am going to live.......I love how that sounds.
I intend to make it count.
*When I need help and/or encouragement, my daddy leaves me pennies. They pop up at the oddest times and in the most random places.