Now With NO Cancer*
I had my first surgery Thursday (5/18) --the lumpectomy to remove the cancerous cells in my breast.
The doctor called the very next day to say that he got it all and that the margins were clear and...
are you ready??
There was no further sign of cancer in the excised tissue!
So, you know, I was pretty overjoyed, but I'd just had surgery and was on pain meds and wonky--the first pain medication I took made me really, really itchy and it's hard to realize your blessings when you're itchy. It didn't really hit me until I FINALLY had a good night's sleep and realized that, as far as we know, I am now cancer free.*
Free from Cancer.*
So, I didn't even know how much that was weighing on me, the idea that there could be worse cancer revealed in the lump. I haven't slept through the night since this whole things started. After I talked to the doctor, I went to sleep and slept and slept and slept.
Gosh, I needed that sleep.
So, now we go forward with the reconstruction/reduction and the prevention of it reoccurring. It's still an arduous bit of road in front of us, but I am so hopeful that I can see the end of it. A little nervous, still, given the year I've had, but hopeful.
The next surgery is Wednesday, 5/24. And then I still have to have radiation because my cancer cells are high grade, which is not what you want. More than 30% of people with my kind of cancer cells see a recurrence without radiation-- I am really hoping to avoid that. But another bit of good news is that my cancer isn't estrogen-responsive so I don't have to take the dreaded Tamoxifen for five years. After the reconstruction surgery and the radiation, I will be done with this cancer.*
OH YES I WILL.
I have so much to tell you about. As you might imagine, the lessons from this chapter of my life are coming fast and furious. But for today, I'm just going to live in the joy of a successful surgery, the pronouncement that I am cancer-free, and the blessings of the literally hundreds of people in my life who have taken the time to root for me and pass along their wishes and prayers and vibes for good health. I feel like nothing would have been possible without you.
*Not trying to tempt the fates here, but as far as I know, this is true. I think it's a measure of the horrible year I've had that I am afraid to say this out loud.