if my health were determined by the love we feel from you, dear family and friends, i would be cancer free (and maybe your love would also clear up other ailments [see: adult onset acne]). seriously, we feel enveloped in the most amazing blanket of your thoughts, vibes, dances, and prayers. we keep reading and re-reading your notes and listening and relistening to your voicemails. and we can’t believe it’s all for us. it feels selfish in a way, so we’re still working on how to accept your love. we hope you find that by sharing with us, it empowers you too. circles are good that way.
i went back and forth on whether i would make this journey public. i’m so thankful that you encouraged me to do so.
several of you have asked how i caught this. i don’t fully remember. i was in nova scotia working on my MBA. i felt the lump then because i was in some pain. i’m not sure though if i felt the lump and then kept messing with it, making it sore. either way, i called my doctor and went in the morning after i got back to san francisco. it had been 6 months since my annual exam. she was concerned by what she felt. from there, i was referred to the breast clinic where i had a mammogram and ultrasound. i knew something was wrong when the technician talked me through the advances in treating breast cancer (and how if you get a mastectomy, you can get your nipples tattooed on. all i was thinking was, check please!).
they immediately scheduled a fine needle aspiration or biopsy for that afternoon. from the technician, i knew there were 2 masses. the biopsy wasn’t pleasant but those technicians and doctor were amazingly warm, talking me through happy things, like our honeymoon in africa and if i ever wanted to ride a zebra. obviously, yes of course i want to ride a zebra. every. stinking. day.
the doctor gave me her cell phone to call with any questions over the weekend. i mostly stuck to her instructions to avoid lifting anything and to boss my husband around all weekend. every other part of me was racing around the implications of what just happened.
that brings us here.
pain is an extremely rare side effect of breast cancer.
listening to your body and noticing how it changes is something only you can own.
and no matter how hypchondriac you feel, taking advantage of modern medicine and healthcare is a benefit we are lucky enough to be in the tiny fraction of the world’s 7 billion to have.
we will share more soon, after some additional doctors appointments this week.
in the meantime, our job, beyond regaining health, is to keep practicing how to accept your love, kindness, and generosity. and then we can pass that on to others in the next go round.
until then –