Today I went to the Shady Grove Fertility Center. The ladies there were super nice and I'm glad to have them on my side. My doctor here is Dr. Paulette Browne, and she taught me the ins and outs of how they were going to try and hijack my cycle with birth control pills after I got my stupid Mirena IUD removed that afternoon (I'm not totally unconvinced that the IUD didn't cause or accelerate my cancer), then I will start injecting myself (haha, yeah right, this is where my friend Elspeth comes in) with fertility drugs to plump up my eggs, and when a good amount are ready I will be put under for about 15min while they go in and 'harvest' them for freezing. Usually the fertility drugs cost anywhere from $10K-$20K, but I am happy to say that Walgreens has a program where they donate them all, free of charge, to cancer patients. I do still have to pay the $5K for harvesting and freezing though. I have insurance, but I'm starting to get worried about where I'm going to get money for everything. I still have my normal bills, mortgage, and five animals to feed. I wasn't expecting all these medical shit.
Today I went to see a Surgeon, Dr. Sara Bruce. She seems to be very knowledgable and nice. We went over a lot of information, all of which is overwhelming. I think I'm in shock. I can't believe that this is happening to me. I keep wondering what I did to deserve this, which I know is the wrong attitude to be having, but it lingers in the back of my head. Dr. Bruce went over Lumpectomy's vs. Mastecotmy's, Estrogen positive/negative (ER), Progesterone positive/negative (PR), HER2 positive/negative, what Invasive Ductal Carcinoma meant, and I met a couple other ladies who would be helping me make future appointments with Dr. Bruce and elsewhere. So far we know that I am ER negative, PR positive, which seems to only happen in 1.4% of Breast Cancer tumors. She thinks the lymph nodes under my right arm may be a little swollen, either due to the biopsy done last week, or because of the cancer, so I'm scheduled to get a breast MRI on Thursday (4/17/14). She has also suggested that I speak to a Fertility clinic about freezing some of my eggs because I am most likely going to need Chemo, and that will mess with my period and can bring on menopause earlier than I would have gotten it. I feel like a lot of information has been thrown at me and that I need to make some really important life decisions instantly...
Just got a call from my doctor as I'm driving back from Hell City... I have Breast Cancer :(
I'd like to tell you all what has been going on in my life over the last 36 hours or so, not to get pity, but to hopefully educate at least one person... The last two days have been a whirlwind of emotions for me. While I was sleeping Monday night, my hand brushed across my chest, about 2 inches to the right of my dermal piercings. Normally a movement like this wouldn't wake me, but I instantly woke up because something was different... Wrong. There was a lump. And it wasn't small either. I began to panic and think the worst. When did this show up? How the hell did I miss this? Needless to say, I didn't get much sleep. Of course that morning I was already getting up earlier than usual to go back to the dentist so he could remove the stitches from my gum graft surgery 2 weeks before. Which he did, but my mind was so preoccupied, and it was still so early in the morning that I hadn't told a single person yet.
As soon as I left there I got in my car and called my primary care doctor, but they weren't open yet, dammit! I figured I should just go to work and call my doctor from there, they had to be open by then. Thankfully I did notice that Zephi had commented on some photo on IG so I knew she was awake, so I texted her before I drove to work. I needed to talk to someone, even for just a second, to calm myself.
By the time I got to work, the doctors office was open and I was able to schedule an appointment for 11:45am that day (4/8/14). I then proceeded to call my mom, even though she is currently visiting her sister in CA and it was 5:30am at that point. She calmed me down and told me that my grandmother had two cysts biopsied back in the day, so that it may just be that. It felt good to talk to her, but it's a very scary thing to go through alone and I began to cry.
At the doctors appointment, my doctor thought she found another lump in my other breast. Now I really started to panic because I hadn't felt that one! She sent me immediately to have a mammogram and ultrasound. Neither of which I have ever had. Luckily, I did get to choose where I went for them, and I happen to have a friend who is a Radiology Tech and Mammographer at a reputable place. I texted her that I was coming and she looked out for me (the one blessing of the day). I'm not going to lie, the photos taken by both seem very scary to someone like me who knows nothing about cancers, tumors, cysts, etc. It was a VERY large, dark mass measuring at 3.1cm. The Radiologist there that day labeled it a 'complicated cyst', which has a 90% of not being cancer. Things are looking better. The little lump in my left breast is solid and also doesn't look cancerous. She is not certain about either though, so she wants biopsies. And since I am planning on going to Hell City this weekend, I opt to do it the next morning (today, 4/9/14, 7am). Well, it's been done, they actually drained the large one with a gigantic needle and it proceeded to refill with whatever nasty fluid was in there. The left breast was NOT biopsied because the Radiologist today told me that in fact nothing was there (phew). It only looked like there was because I'm on my period and all the extra hormones ALWAYS make your breasts a bit lumpy. So never do a breast exam while on your period ladies!
I'm still scared, but nearly as much. The earliest I will know results will be Friday (4/11/14), and the latest will be next Tuesday (4/15/14).