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Boob news - it's not always the big C


checking boobs


So on Friday 8 Feb I went for a breast scan.

I found a lump just before Christmas, got it checked by a female GP a couple of weeks ago and was given a screening appointment at the Breast Surgery Clinic within the required 2 weeks.

I don’t think I have ever been so terrified.

It has been on my mind all the time. I’ve imagined the worst, checked survival rates, you name it. Half expecting the battle - operation, chemo, hair falling out to be part of my near future.

Thought about what would become of Mokshatrim - whether I would be able to manage to keep it going.

Friday felt like a huge crossroads - the day the rest of my life would be mapped out.

The people at the Breast Surgery Clinic when I arrived were clearly at all sorts of stages - not just people like me who were waiting for the verdict.

It’s a strange feeling looking at people who have lost their hair. Imagining their stories. Wondering what they have endured and what their future holds and whether you are going to share it.

I'd taken my husband, who had known from the beginning and kept asking me about it, while I was trying to forget.

After the GP, I had told very only close family and friends.

On the day - I went with my hubbie and best friend. I don't think either of them had much idea of how terrified I was. My hubbie had even blithely watched a programme about palliative care in the final days, while I just felt sick to my stomach.

We arrived really early and the waiting seem to last forever.

I wasn't really looking forward to the process but was keen to just get it over with. I was expecting to be felt up by a male consultant and had been joking that I should have been in training - maybe randomly whipping out my boobs at bus stops.

I was so relieved when I lovely smiley female practitioner came for me. She felt me up with gentle warm hands. I asked her whether it was likely I would know today - “oh yes" she said and then the sweetest words I think I’ve ever heard "it feels like a fluid filled or oil filled cyst”. AND if that wasn't enough she arranged a female doctor for my ultrasound.

Onto another waiting room and THE MAMMOGRAM - feeling half better after the initial impression but still cautious. Mammograms are bizarre - a woman moving your boob around like a sack of potatoes and then some weird form of yoga pose. Bum out, boobs in, look over your shoulder, hold this back, be at one with the machine - and now relax (you are kidding me!!). The squishing is uncomfortable but over quickly. She gave me no further news but we did have a lovely chat about sewing!

Back in the waiting room for a bit. Then off to the female radiologist who did a very quick ultrasound. She showed me my normal breast tissue on the screen - then the lump - which hardly looked different - she said it was slightly lighter. Then she said “it’s a fatty cyst probably from some sort of injury. It didn't show up on the mammogram. Nothing to worry about, you can go”. Well I just burst into tears!!

I can’t even begin to express the relief. It's taken me a few days to believe it and not feel the sense of impending doom.

My relief is tempered with the realisation that not everyone is so lucky. I am lucky - they tell you that most lumps are not cancer - but that doesn’t stop the worrying.

I wanted to post so I can share my experience - so YOU HAVE HEARD A STORY where a lump does not lead to a diagnosis of breast cancer.

It's so important to check your breasts - and if you find something PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get it checked out as soon as you can.

And to all those who have had the news I dreaded - my heart goes out to you all, I hope you do not find my post tactless - you are incredibly strong and I am so very sorry.

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