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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