Inktastic

My life changed in a split second as I laid on the table still thinking of the ladies in the waiting room with tears and the fear in their eyes. I would say a prayer for them as I worried about them, not really having  a clue what was going on with me. 
 
She says hello, very nice lady, and she begins the ultrasound. She says she can't find it again, and then she finds it. I begin to stare at the monitor wondering what is exactly that she’s looking for. I just had a mammogram and ultrasound done at the end of November and everything was a-okay. She tells me I have a mass. "I have a mass," I say. My heart just stopped, a lump in my throat. What kind of mass? Cancer? As she grabbed my hand, she said “I'll be honest, it doesn't look good, but let's get a biopsy today and find out what we are dealing with.” Biopsy today?  I’m thinking, but wait, is there a mistake? I was just in with my doctor. She gave me a breast exam and said everything was fine. Now a biopsy? Or even cancer?
 
I'm back in the sitting room with the other ladies with the fear in their eyes and water in my eyes too. I go back in to see Dr. Lee and she looks at me and says this wasn't at all what she was expecting, but that a biopsy will tell us what is going on. My husband comes in. She shows us the model and tells us what the shape of my mass is and size and it does seem to be cancer. They could be wrong but they usually aren't but let's not go there till we find out the biopsy results. Of course I couldn't get in that day and so had to wait a few days to do the biopsy. 
 
The biopsy was was performed on a Friday so we had to wait over the weekend for the results. I found out the following Tuesday that it was indeed cancer. Invasive Ductal Carcinoma, the most common kind, with a grade of 2-3. 
 
Why me, but then again why not me????
 
The above comes from my first post back in February 2013.  I wanted to keep up a journal to help others, but once I was dealing day-in and day-out with cancer, I couldn’t bring myself to write about it.  
 
My treatment plan included surgery, chemo, radiation and now hormonal therapy. I think everyone knows how awful chemo is.  You start out strong, even pumped up with determination. My son shaved my head when my hair started to fall out.  I bought a ton of books, pretty pink breast cancer shirts. I was a walking billboard for Breast Cancer awareness. Bald and ready to fight.
 
The first chemo I was like ok I can do this. By the 3rd cycle I just felt I couldn't do it. Luckily I have the best husband who would literally pick me up and tell me  I could do this. I cried out in agony many days, but I made it! You really can do it. 
 
I’m still exhausted and have a good amount of bone pain. I'm hoping this will get better as the days and years go by.  What matters now is helping others. I want to help because it is scary. The unknown is scary. I’m having a hard time with the daily what if it comes back?  I’ve heard this gets better as the years pass. If I can make it through hell anyone can.
 
I wanted to be a walking billboard for breast cancer by designing and wearing breast cancer t-shirts.  We then turned these designs into it's own store, www.saveourboobies.com, with shirts designed to raise awareness for early detection and help inspire others to keep fighting through their own journey.  Think Pink & Support Breast Cancer Awareness- Let's all make a difference! 
 
by Angie Smithdail
 
 

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