As I wrote in my last post, my regular, run-of-the-mill mammogram didn't look so good, so other tests were ordered. Then an ultrasound. Then a biopsy. OK, at this point, it doesn't take a Rhodes scholar (which I'm not) to figure out that sumpin just ain't right in Boobtown. And true enough, the biopsy was clear as dawn - ductal carcinoma in situ ("DCIS") which translates into "yay! you've got the very least bad form of breast cancer!" What I've got hasn't invaded beyond the duct into surrounding tissue or into the lymph nodes, but let's not kid ourselves, this is still Pink Ribbon territory.
And I'm scared.
great and things are chugging along - I have an MRI scheduled for first thing Wednesday morning and after that, I'll pick a surgeon (think of it as a really bad game show, probably airing on Fox until public outcry becomes too much to ignore) and we figure out how much of me is left and how much of my Amazonian cosplay takes on an air of true authenticity.
Time does funny things at this point. I want everything to just stop. Just. Stop. I want to curl up into a very small ball and hide under the covers, not even coming out for comfort food like pie or Chicken 'n' Stars. I just want things to stop. But things, of course, don't stop, not least of which is because I have attained the status of a Grown-Up and am expected to carry on with things. There is work to be done - papers to grade, laundry to fold, writing to do, pets to care for, errands to run - all the things that go into creating a modern life and yes, they have to be done. And they have to be done even when you're feeling weak, and fragile, and impostor-ish because with DCIS, you just barely have cancer at all, and so many other people have it so much worse, so for God's sake, buck up, girl! (You think this because your brain is certifiably crazy, by the way.) And someone gives you a hug or buys you a cup of tea and you just collapse into a shallow puddle. If you're lucky, you choke out, "Excuse me" and get to the bathroom before you begin sobbing and no mascara is really that waterproof. Screaming seems like a logical course of action, but it would scare spouses, co-workers, small children and/or pets, so that's out, unless you make an excuse and go for a drive. Then, make sure the windows are tightly rolled up and have at it.
You try not to worry people around you, but you just don't know how to answer when someone asks you, "How are you?" That simple question becomes a big, honking deal. You just get through the day as best you can with lists running through your head as you pigeonhole your life - medical stuff, insurance stuff, work stuff, family stuff - and invariably you drop something.
And you just want to curl up into that very small ball - all from a microscopic cluster of cells that don't belong there. Roller coaster of emotions? Hell, that's easy. Try a gorram Tilt-A-Whirl. But I keep being told to "feel what you're feeling" and right now, I feel overwhelmed. People are thinking about me, and praying for me, and making me gifts (gorgeous, gorgeous gifts) and being so kind to me that I feel so crappy about feeling crappy.
But I am assured that this, too, shall pass.
Leaving what in its wake, I have no idea.