Not Life Threatening, Just Annoying

So, I had the stereotactic biopsies on my left breast yesterday.

It was an experience in being mindfully vulnerable. I was thinking about how most of women's healthcare requires us to be in these positions of complete exposure. Even having a baby, which is the most powerful act I can imagine, requires us to do it completely exposed and vulnerable.

Man, we ROCK. 

Seriously. We are so strong.

So, anyway, the biopsies were unpleasant and the table they use ("It's just like getting your oil changed," said the nurse) is not designed for comfort. But the staff was so amazing and caring and really thorough, and they kept me completely informed every step of the way and even brought me socks when I started shivering. 

I have a really high pain tolerance which comes in handy sometimes and yesterday was one of them. Usually, I think it's a bit of a handicap because, by the time I feel pain, I've typically done a lot of damage. But this procedure wasn't painful for me. Not my favorite thing, but really not that terrible at the time. I got to chat a little with the people working on me.

Still, it's kind of like having your breast slammed in a car door--twice in my case. The bruises are truly spectacular. (I'll spare y'all.) I was in a lot of pain by nightfall, and I couldn't get the darn incisions to stop bleeding --especially when the bag of ice I was using leaked and soaked all the gauze and steristrips. Finally, I was so miserable that I just went to bed and actually slept pretty well and I woke up in the morning pain-free and with the unmistakable conviction that everything is going to be okay.

And really, we live in the most amazing times. Even just a few years ago, they wouldn't have been able to see those spots on the mammogram. The diagnostic equipment is stunningly sensitive. The doctor put some titanium markers in my breast as a little hello to future mammographers, and to make it easier to keep track of those spots.

I should hear soon. I could hear as early as today but it's more likely by the end of the week. I'm just going on the assumption that all is good until I hear otherwise.  I mean, that's as easy as thinking the worst, right? But even worst case scenario, this is not life threatening.  Just annoying.  

Which, you know, could be the title of my autobiography: Not Life Threatening, Just Annoying.


Linda said…
We do indeed live in technologically advanced times. Will wish you all the good thoughts for a speedy recovery, and will wait to hear the further updates before also jumping to worse case scenarios. It's a beautiful, wind-free, sunny, just above freezing day here in Canada. Perfect day for good thoughts.
ccr in MA said…
Definitely have my fingers crossed for you! Your attitude will serve you well, for sure.
Lynn said…
And still you took the time to wish me a happy birthday. Which of us is the real blessing, I ask? Feeling so grateful for your friendship, and that the procedure was less awful than it could have been, but most of all that peace has flowed over you, and that you feel our love and support.
smalltownme said…
Thinking of you dear Barb!
Ei said…
Love to you, Barb. My friend Michelle caught her breast cancer in this way a few years ago...she's healed and healthy...but she marveled that just a few years before that she lost her own mother to breast cancer absolutely because this technology was not yet available. Magical.

I'm sorry they left you battered and bruised. I hope Jane is being good to you, lady. Every mom needs a little love, and seems like you need some extra.
Becky Brown said…
"Mindfully vulnerable" is such a gorgeous and powerful phrase - vulnerable yet in charge. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. Rock on, warrior woman!
tanita✿davis said…
That Which Just Annoys Us: The Barbara Matijevich Story. ☺
Go, you!
Kathy said…
Sending hugs and prayers. Been down that road, if you can believe. Hoping all is ok. How about that crazy experience? Holes in the table? Crazy. Thank you for sharing your story. You are not alone. And neither am I. Love you, my friend.
psam ordener said…
I hope the rest of your life is "not life threatening, just annoying." ONe could actually relax!

Sending hugs, and praying for the best outcome.

Keep thinking good thoughts!