If you read Monday’s post, you read that I had my first mammogram and that I was looking forward to getting a “follow up letter” from that appointment in the mail that would say that everything is fine and that no further follow up would be needed. Well, I didn’t get “the letter”…instead on Tuesday I got a phone call. The nurse said something like, “We need to get a few more pictures and possibly do an ultrasound, and we’d like to get you in as soon as possible.” I wanted to scream…
Didn’t Get The Letter…
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I really thought everything would be normal and I would be getting “the letter” in the mail. After hanging up the phone, my mind went into overdrive. I went to my office, closed the door and it seemed like a million thoughts raced through my mind…”I have breast cancer.” “I cannot have breast cancer!” “My life will never be the same.” “God, what is going on?” “This cannot be happening!” “This is for more tests, don’t panic.” “How can I not panic?” Then when I thought, “I want mom!”, I burst into tears.
Then I called Pastor Barb…who I call my “second mom” and friend, who is recovering from a double mastectomy. I asked her to share what she went through with her second round of screenings and tests. She shared with me, encouraged me, calmed me and reminded me that God is in this and is still in control. She also said something like, “Thank God, Julie, that you went in and didn’t put your mammogram off!” I agreed with her. I called Tina who reminded me she had to go back for a second mammogram as well last time. She also encouraged me and told me she believed everything would be fine.
I consider myself a strong Christian, but I am ashamed to say my faith has been rocked…not my faith in God, but at times during the last few days I let those haunting thoughts of breast cancer control me. One minute I would be in complete trust of God, surrendering this over to Him, and having total peace, and then the next minute I would be worried, afraid and in tears. I have been an EMOTIONAL MESS!
My second appointment was yesterday morning at the local radiologists’ office. I was expecting the best, but prepared for the worst. I guess my left side was more questionable than my right. Six pictures were taken of my left side, and only two of my right. This time around was a little more uncomfortable, but nothing that was unbearable. Next I had an ultrasound of my left side. They found two spots, each about a centimeter, which thank the Lord, ended up to both be cysts and not masts. I’m also considered “fibrous” in another area which looked questionable and could possibly be pre-cancerous, but not at this point. They want to see me again in six months, just to be sure.
I left feeling relieved, yet a little apprehensive. I wanted them to say, “Everything looks great. We’ll see you next year.” But I’m also thankful that they didn’t say, “We need to take a biopsy.” I AM VERY THANKFUL TODAY! I’m thankful that God has his hand upon me, and that I do not have breast cancer. I’m thankful for technology today that performs these tests. I’m thankful for the people that helped me yesterday at the radiologists’ office. I’m thankful for my family. I’m thankful for those special people that stood beside me, who encouraged me, and who loved me through the last couple of emotional days…that had to be very trying!!
Having gone through this scare, I’m SO on board to help fight breast cancer now more than ever! I get the opportunity to help raise money through Mary Kay in our Team Up For Women Challenge going on now through May 12. Team Up For Women is a challenge to help fund the fight for a cure of cancers that affect women and also to fight domestic violence. I am much more committed to this Challenge now than I was even just three days ago before I got the phone call from the doctor’s office! If you’d like to donate to this cause, contact me! More information can be found at the Mary Kay Ash Charitable Foundation http://www.mkacf.org/.
Please, I beg you, do your self exams and go get your annual exams done ladies! And if you’re a man, encourage the women in your life to do the same! May God bless you all!