One year ago today, I walked into the women's imaging center at my local hospital to get the results of my breast biopsy. They called Jeff and I back into an office, where we sat across from a radiologist and a nurse. I can still hear the doctor's voice in my head "Well, it is cancer......" At first I felt like this had to be some kind of cruel joke, like I was being punked or something. It is too hard to believe even now that I was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 29.
After the doctor left the room, the nurse sat there and talked with me about what the next year would probably hold for me.....surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and reconstruction. I was most upset about losing my hair, due to chemotherapy at that point. Little did I know, I would end up losing both breasts as well (one by choice, but still).
It still seems so surreal. I feel like I've been watching someone else go through all this. I still picture myself as having long hair and both breasts.....the mirror must be lying or I'm kinda in denial.
My ordeal is still not over. I have treatment until the end of September and a long road till I am fully reconstruction.
I will always have doctors visits, scars as a reminder, and a fear of recurrence to keep me in cancerland to a degree. You see, cancer is the gift that keeps on giving....just not in a good way.
Over the past year, my eyes have been opened to fully know what it is like to have cancer. You really have no idea, until you have lived through it. The only good thing is, it will be a blessing to have that understanding when I finally enter the work force and can apply it to my patient care.
I hope that my experience will bring awareness to the people around me, that yes, young people do get breast cancer too. Don't ever let a doctor tell you that you are too young.....you are not!
This past year has changed my life forever, but I am thankful to be alive to notice.