When I first found the lump I went to my doctor and she assured me that it was probably just a cyst and to not lose sleep, but just to be sure she told me to get it checked out. “I see lots of cysts in patients as young as you”, she said. Little did I know I would be mis-diagnosed and told that everything was “fine” when indeed, I was NOT fine.
I left the doctors office with a long list of imaging places to get this done. Where I live there are two major facilities to get this done: Rose Radiology and Tower Imaging. I chose the one that would take me in the next day and closest to my work. After all, it was my 31 b-day weekend and I didn’t want to worry about it- big mistake. Fast forward through my b-day weekend to Tuesday when the results came in. The doctors office said, “I was fine” and it was just a cyst. I hung the phone up and went on about my work day. However, something didn’t sit right with me and I shared my story with a few of my friends. Two of which said that I need to get a biopsy and/or go somewhere else to get another ultrasound-STAT.
We are now in May and I made an appointment at Moffitt’s Lifetime Cancer Screening Center. I remember the day, time of my appointment, what I was wearing, and the awesome hair day I was having. On Monday, May 13, 2013 at 2pm I had my ultrasound followed by a mammogram (which was hella uncomfortable). The nurse who prepped me and also examined my lump also said it was probably a cyst due to my age and the fact that I didn’t have any family history (which later in this journey I find out that’s not so true). Again, she didn’t look concerned. As I was about to conquer a level in Candy Crush Saga the nurse came in followed by the doctor, followed by a resident who was shadowing the clinic. By the look on their faces you would’ve thought someone had died. All I heard was the doctor say, “ we need to get a biopsy on this right away-I have to tell you, I’m 90% sure we are looking at cancer.”
The next 30 minutes was nothing but hot heat coming towards me, visions of Gianna (my 4yr old daughter) and my husband who’s been my everything since we were 15. I managed to hear some of what the doctor was saying. He did say something like… “I see nothing we can’t fix”, “this looks very aggressive and we want to treat this quickly”. At this point I had to call Justin to come pick me up because the doctor said that I won’t remember anything that he tells me. I asked him about my future and if I was going to make it and he said that I need to focus on now/this week. “I see nothing we can’t fix”, he said. These words would comfort me throughout the week. I can’t believe I was mis-diagnosed.
That night we all prayed a little harder and hugged eachother a little tighter. I don’t think Justin’s hand left mine the entire night. The biopsy was scheduled first thing the next morning. Results came in a day after. I got a call from my actual doctor which was nice. He told me it was def cancer and to come by his office on Friday so he can sit down with us and review the pathology reports as well as next steps. At this point, I never asked what staged it was. I asked the Dr. to tell me those words again, “I see nothing we can’t take care of”. Ok, doctor, see you Friday.
I was never fond of the pink ribbon or the Komen foundation. For reasons that I’m sure I share with some of you. And I don’t need to get into that-at least right now. I never thought that the lump that I found in my breast would lead to what the pink ribbon stood for- breast cancer. Not only did life give me lemons, I got the pink lemons!
More prayers, and lots of cuddling that night and for days to follow.