Updated: Oct 17, 2019
This summer while on vacation with my husband we found a pretty large lump in my breast. Of course, my first reaction was "omg, I'm dying and my baby is only 4 yrs old!"
After a good ugly cry, I decided to wait until we got home to see what the dr had to say. It all went very fast and in a matter of days I had a cancer diagnosis. Ductal Carcinoma In Situ, which means all the cancer cells were contained inside a milk duct. This gave me a sense of relief, knowing they were contained, and we scheduled a mastectomy because I was at a stage 3 and the lump could not be removed without removing all the breast tissue.
Over the next few weeks, I cried a lot and felt sorry for myself a lot, and also felt like this was a sign from the universe that I wasn't taking care of myself enough and thought about what changes I could make to make my body happier. I read somewhere that a very large % of women who get breast cancer have a tendency to put everyones needs ahead of their own. This was definitely me. After my youngest son was born, I was under an immense amount of stress and decided to make self care a scheduled priority. I was getting a monthly facial and massage, but my home life was often chaotic and loud. We're still working on the chaos at home, but I think where I fell short was taking care of my physical body through nutrition, exercise and proper rest.
After my diagnosis, I did all the research I could and decided to get a double mastectomy with reconstruction. This was an agonizing decision but I knew there would always be a fear of cancer showing up in the other breast and I didn't want to go through all this twice.
So here's what happened after we found the lump. First, you go to your primary dr to get the lump checked, then they send you in to get a mammogram. After that an ultrasound and a biopsy. After the biopsy, I had an MRI and genetic testing, met with an Oncologist, met with two surgeons, met with a physical therapist, had another ultrasound and then surgery to remove the cancer/ breasts.
This was all a lot for me because I don't ever go to the doctor for anything other than checkups. I never get sick or have health issues. But right now I'm 5 days post op, at home resting. I'll update this post as things move along. There's still testing to be done, final surgeries to be performed, nipple tattoo ??? not sure about that one yet. And in January, I'm going to see a highly recommended Functional Medicine Dr. and my hope is that she can help me get my health and nutrition on track. We'll also do a thermography session to make sure all the cancer is gone.
Thanks for sharing in this journey with me!
Update: The dr's found cancer in two of the four lymph nodes they took from my arm, so looks like I'm going to have to do Chemo after all.