November 6th… My discovery of cancer…

I posted this on Facebook and didn’t post here… from november 6th…

1 year ago today… this afternoon… for some odd reason, I plopped my butt on the sink in the bathroom and just looked at myself, which I never do… and when I looked, I found that my breast had a huge crease from the nipple to the armpit…and my nipple was pulling sideways. I took a photo, sent to it my husband and my Mom…. and they both thought it was odd. This was 7 months from the discovery of some lumps I had found in this same breast. At that time, I’d had a mammogram and a diagnostic ultrasound and these lumps were thought to be just cysts. I was in the clear or so I thought… I heard the news I wanted to hear and I just honestly stopped worrying about it. I stopped looking, I stopped checking. So this day in November…. I still didn’t think it was cancer…

The next day… I went to my family physician and she ordered me an ultrasound and another mammogram. Of course it was weeks before I could get in…. So the next day on the 8th of November, I called the radiology department and said…. “listen, I was there 7 months ago with what was thought to be cysts… and now my entire breast is caving in… can I please get in sooner.” The lady asked me to hold and came back and asked “Can you be here at 2:30 today?”

My husband waited in the waiting room…. and while I layed there and they inspected….. I knew. When she asked the doctor to come in and look… it took much longer than my last appointment and my heart just pounded. The doctor said “Dawn, we’re very concerned… the breast doesn’t respond like this unless there’s a tumor and it’s usually cancer…” he told me other things as well…. but, it was mumble. I asked him to please explain this to my husband. I knew he’d have questions I couldn’t think to ask in that moment.

When they called him back… it was different and he knew. He told my husband… it’s most likely cancer. My husband asked “could it be anything else?” and the doctor said… “no, I have never seen the breast respond like this and it be anything but cancer”…

We had driven separately to meet at the appointment. We left my car there and on the way home he said “Are you going to tell your parents and kids?”…. We went to tell my parents…. and invited the kids over to tell them… These were some of the hardest conversations I’ve ever had. The unknowns, your mind automatically goes wild.

The next few days were biopsies and appointments. November 14th, it was confirmed. Cancer…

It’s hard to believe it’s been a year… it’s felt like a whirlwind… Ladies, do not think that you are immune because you had a mammogram. Keep checking your breasts…. early detection is the best way to ensure you’re cured.

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1 year anniversary… what cancer has taught me…

November 6th marked 1 year since my discovery of cancer… and November 14th it was official and my life changed forever… Cancer has taught me so much…

This past year was tough… BUT… because of it, I met some amazing new people… who have brought me so much love, kindness and compassion. This time of year brings back some great memories and some not so great memories…. but, I’m grateful to my cancer for what it’s brought me & taught me.

Cancer has taught me who is truly there for me. Who truly loves me and cares for me..

Cancer has brought me back a restored faith in humanity. So many people reached out to me and touched my life in some way… and truly helped us to manage to get through. There have been so very tough times. I.have.not.forgotten…. ❤

Cancer has taught me what is truly important. It’s made me re-evaluate my life…. clean out, simplify and try to establish a manageable life and not one that is so out of reach and difficult to maintain, financially and emotionally… Cancer has made me re-evaluate my living style…. my profession and my stress level. It’s forced me to weed out the bad and keep the good…

Cancer has robbed me of the peace of knowing I’m healthy and living without worry is no longer possible…..HOWEVER, it has forced me to change my lifestyle and I honestly feel healthier than ever…. I no longer need to use deodorant (which I feel is a huge factor in all breast cancers,including men)… my skin on my body is smooth and flawless… I have energy…. I also have tons of aches and pains that I never had before…. but, thankfully I have a huge pain tolerance… and you take it in stride and it just becomes normal.

Thanks to cancer I have a new style… I would have never had the guts to try before… Honestly, I was always a bit overweight and it wouldn’t have carried well on me…. due to my blindness from chemo… I now wear glasses and I’ve decided to keep this “do”… the color may change as it seems my scalp and skin now have developed a sensitivity that cause it to react from the chemicals and bleach… so color may change here soon…

I have developed an allergy to shellfish… I believe my body is trying to tell me what’s bad and good… I now eat no meat, but have allowed myself to eat saltwater and fresh fish (not farm raised)… well, my eyes swell up and get all dry when I eat shellfish now…. so apparently I will no be absolutely no meat.

I am loving my job…. I love, love, love it… It’s so amazing to be a part of something so great! The response has been amazing… I love and have always loved working with brides… and my bosses and business partners are truly some of the kindest and most amazing people I could ever have had the honor of working for and with….

Life is good…. I hope it stays that way! ❤ I’ve prayed and prayed and prayed…. and God is so good.