I had a bit of a weep today.
I was standing in a clinic, naked from the waist up and the radiographer advised me she’d like to do a follow up shot. She’d done the mammogram, both sides, a procedure that’s uncomfortable but unremarkable really… and she hadn’t appeared too concerned at what she’d seen, or hadn’t seen. But the doctor wanted to get a closer look.
I burst into tears.
I’m 44, I’m close to the age my aunts were when they were first diagnosed, I’m close to the age my grandmother was when she was diagnosed, while she was carrying my mother.
I was unprepared for the fact that my advancing years brings the possibility that it will be my turn next just that much closer, and I was unprepared for how much the fear of it was simmering away in my subconscious.
It’s been 3 years since my last scan, I was surprised, it doesn’t seem that long ago, so when I re-booked I was more afraid given that the time between scans was so long… I’m supposed to have annual checks… time flies. So in the week between referral and booking I’ve played over in my mind what I’d do, if in fact they’d found anything untoward.
I’m reasonably confident I’d take a radical approach and go for bi-lateral (both sides) mastectomy and reconstruction all in the same hit, regardless of how small any lesions were. I would rather go through that and the medium term discomfort and associated emotional issues than wake up every day wondering if today is the day any cancer came back. It’s what my mother did, and while, at diagnosis, she was significantly older than I am today, she made the tough choice and has never looked back… it’s been 6 years for her, and there have been no new concerns about this aspect of her health.
So, I had a bit of a weep today. A weep at the possibility that in one instant my world could change radically, and another that…
… it didn’t.
SO, when was the last time you, or the girls close to you got checked? If it’s been a while, what are you waiting for?
If you’re interested about this part of my world, if you need any encouragement to get checked – well, the boob checking archives are here.