My Dance With Breast Cancer
I got out of bed, just another normal morning and did the usual breast test which I have done every morning since I had a lump which turned out to be a cyst and about a year or two after that another lump which I waited for 6 weeks to get an appointment at the hospital. Then on the very morning of the appointment the lump had disappeared over night. Ever since then I have made it a morning routine of checking my breasts.
This morning I feel a lump that wasn’t there the day before. Maybe it is a swollen gland. I will give it a while to see if it goes down. I feel it there for the next three weeks thinking it may disappear like the previous one. But it doesn’t. I guess I had better go and see the doctor just in case. She will probably tell me it is just a swollen gland.
I go to the doctor today and she examines me and says “yes I can feel a small lump there. I am surprised you didn’t come to see me before and not wait three weeks.” So I explain about the previous times and she says “So you were hoping it would disappear again like the last one?” Yes I was. “Well I am going to contact the hospital and you should have an appointment from them in the next two weeks. If you don’t hear from them get in contact with me and I will chase them up.” I thought she would say it was a swollen gland. Still I expect she has to play on the safe side.
It is a week since I saw the doctor. I have received a letter with an appointment for a mammogram and one to see a specialist afterwards. Oh, I suppose the one for the specialist is just in case it is some sort of lump and not a swollen gland.
I arrive at the hospital and have the mammogram not giving it too much thought. After all it is probably just a swollen gland and I won’t have to keep the appointment with the specialist. I wait outside after the mammogram for the results. Then I am called and they say they want to do an ultra sound. Oh, okay I had an ultrasound before and it turned out to be a cyst. They just put a needle in and drew off the fluid and hey presto the lump was gone. It is probably the same this time. Yeah, sure it is.
I heard them say, “We need to do an ultrasound as the mammogram wasn’t very clear.” Okay, fine. When I had a ultrasound done before they just ran the machine over my breast. Now the doctor is starting to bring in below the breast, down the side of my arm, down around my back. Bloody hell what is going on? Do they think this is a cancer and that it is a secondary cancer and they are looking for where it is coming from? No, I am just being silly it is nothing. “ Well it seems as if the mammogram didn’t pick it up but the ultrasound is definitely picking up a lump, we will need to do a biopsy.” Oh shit, still it doesn’t have to be anything. Although all along deep down I have felt that this lump felt different from the other two. The doctor says “I have to warn you that there is a slight chance whether we go in from the bottom or the top, of puncturing the lung. It has never happened yet but I do have to warn you that there is that slight chance. So if you feel your breathing change and getting worse let us know straight away.” Bloody hell, that sounds great. Thanks a lot. I ask if as they have to wait for the results of the biopsy does that mean I don’t have to keep the appointment with the specialist? “Oh no, you still need to keep that appointment as he will explain what we have found so far. You must keep the wound covered for 48 hours and wear a good supporting bra for the next 48 hours non- stop.” Okay, it is probably just some sort of a lump but nothing else. Surely it can’t be anything serious.
I am now in with the specialist. “Well looking through the papers we are a little confused. We discussed your case over lunch today.” Oh that’s nice, what the hell does that mean, discussed it over lunch? “Nothing showed up on the mammogram but they put a warning on it. We have decided that in our opinion it is cancer. However the biopsy has the final word. I am sorry it is bad news. However the good news is that we have caught it early.” My husband asks the specialist, (I think as a way of trying not to believe what he had just heard) “are you sure it isn’t a cyst”?
Jesus I have to wait a week now to have the final result. Do I tell my in-laws? No I won’t say anything – my mother in law has had two strokes and it wouldn’t do her any good. I say to my husband “I don’t think I had better say anything to your mum and dad until we get the results of the biopsy” he agrees. Then later he says “I think they would be annoyed if we didn’t tell them”. Shit, how do you tell someone that you have just been told you may have breast cancer? Whatever way I tell them it is going to be a shock. I am still in shock myself. I just can’t believe it.
What about my daughter? God do I tell her she is so far away living in Korea? I don’t know what to do for the best. After thinking about it for awhile I have decided not to tell her at least not until I know the results of the biopsy. No need to worry her when I may be given the all clear. Yeah, I will wait until then and then I don’t have to say anything.
We call in to see my in laws to tell them. God how do you start to tell someone that you have cancer? Mum keeps flapping around doing things and my husband says to her, “when are you going to sit down? Daphne has something serious to speak to you about”.
“I have been to the hospital today and they said that they think I have breast cancer but the final word rests with the biopsy which I have to wait for the results”. They are shocked. Then they start saying “you will be alright, you caught it early etc”.
None of my friends can believe it. They all say they are sure it will be alright and expect I will get the all clear. Anyway just because it is cancer it doesn’t mean that it is malignant.
The hospital phoned me this morning with an appointment to go and get the results of the biopsy. I don’t think it can be good news, I don’t think hospitals usually phone you with an appointment. They usually put it in the post to you. Maybe I am wrong as I haven’t had much contact with hospitals for quite a while. Maybe this is the norm nowadays, I don’t know. Anyway I have got an appointment to get the results. It is that word cancer it swirls around in my head. I try to stay positive and hope that I will get the all clear. I am feeling so cold, like ice running through my veins. I think I will have a bath to warm me up. Oh hell I can’t, I can’t take the bra off, have to wear it non- stop for 48 hours. So I decided to fill a hot water bottle and go to bed and try to warm myself up.
My friend who is a homeopath is sending me a remedy to help me and to help remove the shock from my system. My sister phones and says she is ordering me some Essiac tea. So those are on the way to help me. Also several friends have asked if they can send me absent healing. Anyway everyone is being very good to me and I am being sent lots of healing from everywhere. I have even sent lotus petals from a powerful ceremony in an ashram in India from one of my soul group.
I am being offered lots of support, love and healing from everyone. It is really very touching.
Now my family are trying to do everything for me. For Gods’ sake I haven’t become useless over night. I am just as capable of doing things as I was before this happened. For Gods’ sake would they just let me get on and do things? Ok when I come out of hospital then I will need help but not now, it just annoys me now. I feel worse when they do that. Yeah, I know they are just trying to help and they probably feel useless as there is nothing they can do to take it away. They care for me and they just want to fix it. However they can’t and doing everything for me just isn’t helping my emotions.
I try and keep my mind busy during the day. Sometimes it hits me, shit breast cancer. What do I think? It must be or they wouldn’t have said that, they wouldn’t say it and worry me without being pretty sure. Yeah but they have to wait for the result of the biopsy. Had a few tears. What if I don’t make it? What if it is cancer and it has spread? Now stop thinking like that, I know all this body mind stuff, I teach it all the time, so I know what to do. A few of my friends say Louise Hay cured herself of cancer so you can do it. Yeah I know, of course I can. Strange that I should have met her last September!
What have I missed in the work I have done on myself to create this? I look it up in Louise’s book. Cancer is resentment but breast cancer is about nurturing. Nurturing others more than yourself. I have changed a hell of a lot over the years but obviously I need to do more work and change more. This has happened for a reason and there is a bigger picture to it all that I can’t see yet. I have over the years done the releasing anger and resentment, there could obviously be more there than I haven’t hit upon yet.
Today is the day and I am hoping for the best to get the all clear. “ Your results of the biopsy are back and did the specialist explain to you last week what he thought of it?”
“Yes: I reply. “What did he tell you? “
“That he thought it was cancer”.
“ Well yes, as we thought that is the result of the biopsy.”
“So what are you saying? It is cancer?”
“Yes” we are sorry.
“Fuck, fuck, I wasn’t expecting this. One part was and another part wasn’t. I wanted to believe I would get the all clear. So what happens now”?
“Well I will make an appointment for you to come in to have an operation to remove the lump. We can’t say if it has spread until we operate. However at the same time we will remove a few lymph nodes from under your arm to test to see if it has spread. If they are not affected great, if they are then we will have you back in straight away and remove all the lymph nodes as a precaution so it doesn’t go any further. Either way you will probably need a course of radiotherapy on the breast just to make sure that all the affected cells are killed. If we find it has spread you will probably need chemo.”
Oh that fucking word, chemo. I hate the fucking thing. It ruins the organs in your body. No fucking way am I having chemo. I know that is just my opinion of chemo, my family think differently about it. I would rather take my chances. Then he made the appointment for me to go in for the operation on April 6th. Then I was sent to see the cancer nurse who talked me through the whole thing again. She gave me her mobile number in case I wanted to talk to her at any time and had any questions that came up later.
All the possible scenarios keep going through my head. What if, what if and what if. The good news is they have caught it early, yeah but what if they haven’t? What if I was right when they did the ultrasound and they think this is a secondary cancer and they were searching for where it originated? What do I tell my daughter, should I tell her? Hell she is so far away I don’t want her to be worried.
My God such a feeling of fear came over me today. Not of the cancer but what if I don’t survive the operation. I can’t believe I am feeling such fear about coming through the operation. Why am I feeling this fear? I have never had any fear about operations before. Mind you, I will be 61 this year and I have only ever had 2 operations. I have only been in hospital three times. Once when I was 12 when I nearly died and I was in there for a month or two. Then to have a cyst removed from above my eye when I was 13. The other time was when my daughter was born. Why am I feeling this terrible fear?
My family and friends are all being very kind and supportive and have been right from the start of this. However today it just got to me. I know they are just trying to put my mind at rest, but this constant saying “you will be alright, you will be alright”. It is just getting on my fucking nerves now. I told my husband that I don’t want to talk about it anymore today. How the fuck can people say I will be alright, they don’t know, they don’t have any guarantees. They haven’t got a fucking clue. So would they just shut up.
I have decided to do a Byron Katie on it (for those who don’t know who Byron Katie is I suggest you google her and find out about her) and I am just looking at the facts. The facts are that I have breast cancer, they are going to operate and can’t say exactly what is what until they operate. It might have spread, it might not. When the operation is over they can say what treatment I will need. So there are the facts. Why build a story around it all? Building a story around it all just causes stress and tension and fear. So I am just going to go with the facts. That’s it.
I still don’t know what to do about my daughter. Should I tell her or not? I will think about it over the next few days and decide. I think she would probably want to know and yet because she is so far away I don’t want to upset her. Well I am off to Liverpool to stay with a friend and do the Moonstone Festival and run an Inner Child Workshop so I will think about it then.
This fear of not coming through the operation keeps coming back and taking me over from time to time. God, I know it is only a million in one chance that I would died during the operation but if that happened my daughter would never forgive everyone for not telling her. That wouldn’t be fair on her I will have to tell her, though I dread having to tell her. She has a right to know.
Had a lovely time up in Liverpool with my friend and she gave me a lovely long treatment. It was nice to just get away for a few days and almost completely forget about it all. Now I am back I have to decide when and how to tell my daughter. I decide to send her a message asking her to arrange a time that we can talk. When I told her she went into shock which was only natural. I felt so bad having to tell her this news. I try to reassure her and tell her that they said they had caught it early. The poor girl is in a state. Later she sends me an e-mail asking me to send her all the details and exactly what they had said.
Get a message back from her today saying she felt a little better about it all after reading my e-mail. Thank God for that. I just want to put my arms around her to comfort her. She is so far away from home. Now I have become aware that the fear I had about not coming through the operation has disappeared since I told her. I realise now it was all about letting her know just in case I didn’t pull through. It wasn’t about me pulling through the operation at all but how it would affect her if she hadn’t been told.
My husband has good days and bad days but today I just told him I am sorry but I just can’t console him. I am using all my strength to deal with my own emotions at the moment. I haven’t got the strength to support anyone else just now. He said he understood and didn’t expect it from me. He wanted to support me as best he could. I know he is having a hard time coming to terms with it as well. I know how I felt when I heard the news about my father, my mother, my brother and various friends.
People keep saying “stay positive, stay positive”. The one thing I have learnt over the years is that we need to work through our negative emotions before we can move on to be and stay positive. This was really put across to me when the film The Secret came out. There were people seeing this film for the first time and it was a completely new concept to them and they actually thought from watching the film that no matter what happened to them they had to stay positive. I had people coming to me who were suddenly suffering from depression and others having panic attacks. This was all because they were suppressing their negative emotions and trying to stay positive. Bloody hell, how can someone be positive when they have just been told that they have cancer?
Today I went for my pre- op. More forms to fill in and then wait to see someone. Called in and had history taken. Had blood pressure on right arm and then on left arm. Then had pressure in ear taken. Then blow into a container to test my lung capacity. Weighed, height taken, and then for MRSA a swab first in my mouth, then up my nose and then in the groin. Bloody hell, I didn’t think that would be done. Shows how little I know about hospitals these days. Then was asked if I snored. “Yes” I reply honestly.
“Very bad” I answer even more honestly.
“How bad is very bad?”
“Well let me put it this way, when I sleep with friends they get up and go into another room”.
“Oh that isn’t very nice”.
I think to myself, “yeah it is alright for you to say that but you haven’t slept with me!”
Then back to the waiting room until I get called and have a blood test done and an ECG. More waiting until I see the doctor. History taking again and lots of questions etc then checked over and finally listened to my chest while I breathe deeply. Then I can go home, yeah.
A friend phoned me while I was still in bed having a lay in. My voice was quite hoarse and she thought it was my husband who had answered.
I joke, “now it is a breast operation I am going in for not a bloody sex change”. Today hasn’t been so bad emotionally.
Spoke to a friend today who is recovering from cancer and she said that having cancer is a lonely place to be. She understood that sometimes you just want to tell everyone to sod off and leave you alone. Her words were to ‘shut yourself away on a desert island’. No one really knows what you are feeling. I realise I was experiencing one side of my emotions when my father, mother, brother and several friends had been told that they had cancer. Now I am on the other side of the emotions and experiencing it from that point. Yes, a big bloody difference.
My emotions have been all over the place today. Started off the day well and then saw a programme on television about cancer. One man was talking about his wife who had breast cancer and she was giving the all clear and then two years later she died. It had been in her spine and they didn’t know about it. That really set me off and I had a good cry on and off for the rest of the day. So much for me thinking I had come to a place of acceptance. That’s a laugh. Calling this journal my dance with breast cancer sounds about right. I didn’t want to call it my fight with breast cancer as there is enough fighting going on in the world without me adding to it. Dance is about right thought, some days it is a waltz, others a fox trot, others a quick step and then other days the tango. More like a bloody tangle of emotions.
Received a package from a friend today with some of her home made chocolate truffles. Ahhhh they are delicious. Just what I needed some comfort food.
A friend came over to see me today and she gave me healing and some other therapy. Unlike me, I didn’t really drift off during either of them. Although I am not consciously thinking about the situation it is obviously playing on the sub-conscious mind stopping me from relaxing fully. Another friend called in and offered to take me tomorrow to see Steven Turoff the psychic surgeon. One part of me would like to go and the other part of me just feels so exhausted I can’t be bothered. So I have decided not to go. Whether it is the right decision or not I don’t know but it feels like the right decision at this moment in time. Received a package today from another friend with some remedies and some Cd’s with music that I like, a crystal and a nice card with one of her special affirmations. That was nice. Friends are being so nice sending me cards, crystals, cd’s and remedies.
The day for the op is getting closer. In one way I feel that is good as it is the next step. Then another part of me thinks “Oh God I then have to wait for the results from the tests on the lymph nodes. What if they are infected and the cancer has spread?”
I arrive for the operation on Tuesday morning at 7.00a.m. Mr Frecker the surgeon came to see me with some students. He explained to them that I had found the lump and that this was a case where the mammogram had not picked up the lump but that there was something there and so they did an ultrasound. They said they wanted me down in theatre by 9.45am. So when I got down there I thought “well this is it”. However they got me on a very narrow bed underneath a very large camera and took pictures of my breast from above and then with my arm outstretched from the side after injecting in a dye which seemingly highlights the area where the cancer is. It took about 20 minutes. I had a quick glance at the screen which was over at the side and I saw two blue blobs. I thought maybe one is the nipple and the other one the cancer. I thought I was then going for the op but they sent me back to the ward and I had to wait for another hour.
Went down to the theatre and they said they were putting the needle in the front of my hand that it would hurt a little. I thought this is a real letting go. I am having to completely trust these people who are complete strangers to me with my life. I thought what it must feel like for people who are giving the lethal injection. Well the needle did hurt a little but the vein wouldn’t take it, so then they said they would have to put it in my arm and that would hurt even more. It did and then that didn’t take either. So they tried another place in my arm and then I think they tried another and finally they found a vein that was suitable. “You will feel a sensation in your arm and then a nasty taste at the back of your throat and then you will drift off into a nice sleep.”
The next thing I knew was hearing a voice saying “Daphne the operation is over.” I gradually came back into the recovery room and then a nurse came down for me. She said “I must apologise to you as I came down earlier to get you and I really frightened you, you really jumped.” I certainly didn’t remember it.
Bloody hell my arm is painful. Oh shit, it is so painful to try and position myself in the bed and of course no one can help as they can’t touch the right hand side. The breast doesn’t feel painful it is the arm where they took the lymph nodes from that is causing all the pain. I have a saline drip in my other arm and a tube for oxygen in my nose. They are taking my blood pressure on a regular basis. Just been to the loo and my wee is a bright blue. They said that would happen because of the dye they injected into me beforehand and they also injected more dye in while I was having the operation to show up the lymph nodes.
Didn’t sleep very well as had to sit up and whenever I got out of bed to go to the toilet it was really painful trying to get settled in bed again. I had taken the pain killers at tea time but I didn’t take the ones they offered me in the evening and maybe I should have done. When the nurse came round with the tablets this morning she said I should take them anyway as I will benefit from them as I will have to do exercises to help prevent frozen shoulder and the exercises may make the pain worse. So, best to take the painkillers to avoid the pain altogether. Later the nurse came to bathe the wound and dress it. Bloody hell it looks a long scar I didn’t expect it to be that long.
“Surely a small lump doesn’t warrant such a long scar?” I ask her.
The nurse replies “Oh no, that is a thread”
“Oh thank God for that. Looks like I also have a nice blue and yellow breast”.
Had a visit from the physiotherapist who explained to me the exercises I need to do to get my arm going again and to prevent frozen shoulder. She also gave me a leaflet to read with diagrams of the exercises. Then I was told I could go home later today but I would need to see the breast care nurse before I went. She arranged for me to come back on Monday to have the wound inspected and an appointment made for me to get the results from the lymph nodes. Then it will be decided for definite what treatment I will need.
Nice to be home again although seems strange to me as I feel restricted in movement. Lots of good wishes from family and friends and people all sending healing etc. My mother in law said she will cook a dinner each evening for me which is very nice of her. So we went up there tonight and then came back home. I went to bed about 8.00p.m. Just felt very tired. When I scratch lightly above the wound it echoes like it is hollow. So funny.
I am glad the operation is over. This morning I have different feeling and emotions. It is just hitting me now that I just can’t believe I am going through this. I can’t believe this is happening to me. It is just disbelief really. Funny, thinking about it I would of thought that these feelings would have come about at the beginning more so then now. Obviously this is how it is for me and all the various feelings are probably different for each individual person that goes through this experience. Though when I think about it now is probably the time, as before I was in shock.
Back to the hospital today to have the dressing removed from the wound. That nurse who said that it was just a thread was completely wrong. It is a scar. Bloody hell I didn’t think it would be that long. It looks like it is going from one side of my breast to the other. Why did they have to make it so long for a little lump? Or maybe those blue blobs I saw on the screen were both lumps. Did they find more in there than was thought at first? Have also being given an appointment for the 21st to get the results of the lymph nodes. It is all this waiting and not knowing that is frustrating. Also I find it very frustrating not being able to do a lot and having to rely on others to do things for me.
I woke up this morning with a very strong feeling that alright some women will read this journal and start to check themselves on a regular basis. Then there will be others, especially younger women who may let it go over their head. Very important that I must take pictures of the breast and the condition it looks in now, as for some women seeing the results will be enough to make them check themselves. What? Bloody hell I don’t want my boob on show for all and sundry to see. The more I thought about it the more I thought well if it helps one person then it is worth it. I took a few pictures myself which it was very hard to do with one hand. So when a friend came around today to give me healing I asked her to take some photos for me. It is not the sort of thing I would normally do – expose my boob to the world, however it is in a very good cause and it is a very important cause, so I am doing it.
At the moment looking at my boobs is like looking at a white person standing beside a sunburnt Asian. Actually a sunburnt Asian who has being in a fight. All the yellow has gone and it has turned a dark brown. I am doing the exercises each day and my arm has got quite a bit more movement in it, although it is still sore. Now I have more movement I can see that where I thought the pain was coming from under the arm where they took the lymph nodes from it isn’t there at all. At the end of the scar across the breast is where the muscle comes down from the arm and it feels like the muscle has been cut.
Well today is the day I get the results. Hell! Two of the doctors are stranded abroad because of the volcano incident so they are running over forty minutes late. It feels like you are just at the finishing line and then find out you have another mile to run. In the end they are over an hour late. Got called in and told that the cancer hasn’t spread. Thank God. However I will have to have radiotherapy and maybe hormone treatment. He also confirmed what I had thought that there were two lumps. Then I was examined and had to have blood drained from the wound. The doctor said that it would be much more comfortable for me once he drained the blood off. Well it certainly is. I didn’t realise that that the pressure was building up and pressing on the end of the scar which is where all the pain was coming from. My arm has so much more movement now. Fantastic.
When we came out my husband said “I am over the moon, that is just fantastic news. I am surprised that you are not excited”.
I reply “you know what, I am just too tired to feel excited. It is as if all the tension and anxiety building up to this has just hit into my body now and I just feel so exhausted”.
A friend gave me a session of Theta over the telephone this morning and later on in the day another friend called to see me and she gave me some healing. Felt tired later. Essiac Tea, Homopathic remedies, Flower remedies, vibrational remedies, healing, theta, reflexology, one blessing and lots of absent healing apart from my meditation, visualization and affirmations. I don’t feel I can take on any more at the moment. That’s besides up and down the hospital. You get my drift. Don’t get me wrong I do appreciate it all and am grateful for it all. In fact I am having so much healing that at the end of it all I might have a few spare boobs!!!
It was great news yesterday and what a relief to know that it hasn’t spread. However today I have just felt exhausted. Went to bed during the day and slept for a few hours. The hospital phoned with the next appointment in a weeks time to see the oncologist to discuss the treatment I am going to have.
I have noticed since I was told about the cancer that as a passenger in a car I am getting really jumpy. Just can’t seem to help it.
It is six days now since I was last at the hospital. This morning I phoned the nurse to say my breast has swollen and I think it needs to be drained again. She said to call in and see her tomorrow after seeing the oncologist.
I saw the oncologist’s assistant about the radiotherapy treatment. He said they would start in about two weeks but that was before I told him I had to have the breast drained after seeing him. Said they could give me hormone treatment as well as radiotherapy but that goes on for five years and for the extra benefit I would get from it they don’t think it is worth putting me through that. It would only add about another 2% to the chances of it not coming back again. The radiotherapy will give an 84% chance. The side effects are fatigue, the breast may swell and get very red, the radiation can affect the top part of the lungs so may affect breathing. The breast will probably change in size and will not go back to its normal shape. As my brother would say – would you rather have all that or be dead? Puts it in perspective doesn’t it. It is so true thought isn’t it? Makes it seem very simple.
Don’t know about him saying that the boob might get bigger or smaller. Looking in the mirror now it is already got smaller. One seems to be heading south while the other appears to be heading north.
So then to the nurse to have my breast drained.
“Well that was the hoped for ending but didn’t turn out that way”
“Hell” the nurse took one look at it and said “I will have to call the man himself” – meaning Mr Frecker the surgeon.
So he came in and said “you have had a haemorrhage in the breast. I will have to cut it open and get all the blood out”.
Seemingly if it happens it is just shortly after surgery but this is a delayed one. So as it was unusual he called for certain people to come and look and watch as to what he was doing. One of the nurses said to me, “you must have been in a lot of pain?”
I said “no, I didn’t have any pain just a little soreness”.
She kept saying she could not understand why I didn’t have any pain.
He took the scalpel and said “now watch this, if you are opening a fresh wound this is the way to do it so it doesn’t hurt the patient. “That didn’t hurt did it? “
“No”. After a while though as he cut more I did start to feel it. It wasn’t too bad thought as it just felt like if you cut yourself with a razor blade. Not that I go around cutting myself with razor blades but I have done it a few times by accident. Then the blood poured out and as I was lying down it ran down my neck and back. They got me to sit up and cleaned me up and had to do it four times before it was completely finished. Once all the blood was out they then squirted saline into it to wash it out a couple of times. So have to phone the nurse this morning and according to what she thinks as I describe it to her I will have to go back to the hospital either today or tomorrow. What a drag.
The nurse said to go up to the hospital to see her this morning which I did. She said it was draining nicely and changed the dressing and gave me some dressings for me to do it myself each day until I go back to see her next Wednesday morning.
A lot of blood seemed to come out of the wound during the night. Maybe I am lying on it during the night and squeezing it. I think it might be best if I try going to sleep sitting up in bed again like I did when I came home after the operation.
Have tried sleeping sitting up now for a few nights but it is still bleeding a lot and I am not getting a very good sleep at night. Never mind, I am going back to the hospital tomorrow so will see what the nurse has to say. The wound looks like part of the inside is coming out at the moment.
Saw the nurse this morning and she said she needed to use a caustic stick to put on the wound so it will stop it from protruding. Otherwise it will heal like that and will look peculiar. I told her about sleeping sitting up and she said it didn’t matter if I rolled on it during the night. If I squashed it, it would be alright as it would probably help it to clear out quicker. She changed the dressing for me and gave me more dressings to take home so I can do it myself each day. Have to go back to see her on Monday morning. It feels like it is becoming my second home. I wonder should I ask if they do bed and breakfast!!!!!! I can drive again horray! It feels like I have got my freedom back.
I keep asking why did this happen to me? This morning I woke up and it all seemed very clear to me. All these years I have been looking after the mind and spirit and apart from doing the emotional work on the body, I have been ignoring the body. What I mean by that is I have still being eating juke food from time to time. Pushed my body and not given it enough rest. There have been times when I have had too much alcohol. If the mind, body and spirit are not in balance then something is bound to give sooner or later and breast cancer is my sooner or later. So now I am being put in a position to learn all of this and have no option but to rest and learn to know when I feel tired and to do something about it; to take care of the body as well.
I laughed this morning at how the Universe tests us. The last two articles I have written for More to Life were about control and fear. It is as if the universe has now said, “right let us test you on how good you are at putting these into practice”. My getting jumpy as a passenger in a car has made me realise that it was a unconscious response to having no control over this situation. I can do certain things but all the medical treatment, when, where and how are all out of my control. Fear of course was the one that came to the forefront with the words “you have breast cancer”. Then I have also had to let go of any control to do with my work. I just had to let go and go with the flow as it were. I feel as if this might be a turning point in my career, some change coming up, but how it will change I don’t know. Will just have to wait and see. Well you never know my new career might be Boob Flasher. I could design a special uniform to wear. I will have to sleep on it!!!!!
Have been up the hospital once a week for the nurse to see how my breast is coming along. The wound is slowly healing but not quite closed up yet. Have received an appointment for Barts for the X-rays and tattoos.
Yeah the scar is just about closed up now, thank God. I have decided to go ahead this weekend and do the 3 day advanced Theta course. I didn’t know if I would be up to it but as I haven’t even started treatment yet and bored of not been able to do a lot. I though it would do me good to do something interesting. It has been arranged for me to stay in the area so I don’t have to travel back and forth each day.
Today I went to Barts and they asked me a lot of questions again. I was asked to hold a big board with my hospital number on it in front of me while they took a photograph of me. I said I felt like a prisoner. I was told it was for their records to they could make sure they had the right patient each time. I suppose as they are doing radiotherapy they have to be very careful. Then I had lines drawn all over my breast and had lots of X-rays taking. Then they asked if I had ever had any tattoos and I said no. So they said that it would only feel like a needle prick. The two tattoos would be very small and would be permanent. I said that my daughter had said that as today was Buddhas’ birthday could they give me Buddha tattoo? She just smiles - I didn’t get them – Just two little dots instead. Then I was taking into another room to have CT scans. They said I would hear from them within two to three weeks with the dates to start my treatment which would be 5 days a week for 3 weeks. Yeah I just feel I now have to put my life on hold again for another about 6 weeks. Frustrating. Still I ask myself would I rather put my life on hold for 6 weeks or be dead. I am sure you know what answer I came up with!!!!!!
Have finally got a date to start my radiotherapy. Thank God for that, at least I now can get on and get my life back again.
A few people have said that on a spiritual level I am going through this for all women. I tell them “well the next time I come back to this planet, I am going to make sure to read the small print in the contract”.
I have written this and showing the photographs because I want all women to know how important it is to check themselves regularly. I have gone through what I have gone through and I check myself daily. There are a lot of women who have gone through a lot worse than I have and then there are those who unfortunately have not survived. I can not believe how many women do not even check themselves. So please please every woman who reads this make sure to check yourself on a regular basis and impress it on all the women you know. Thank you.
To be continued...