Now we are Amazon (look it up).


Guess I had my meltdown earlier this week, before any actual diagnosis. Am just kind of dull right now. Stayed home from work Tuesday and nursed the biopsied breast. Like any good patient ignored medical advice and got in the bathtub–what the hell, right? Dripped pissed-off tears into my lavender bubblebath and sort of got over it, but really wished I didn’t know what I knew. In a fit of solidarity the radiologist showed me the films. It was patently obvious with fancier imaging that what couldn’t be seen on mammogram was right where they thought it would be. Dunno how he found it in the first place. The regular mammogram looked pretty regular to me.

So yesterday one of my partners gave me the news. I’m so sorry to have burdened her with that (she looked more miserable than I felt), but I decided to have the breast center CC the report to our office. Through long experience I know the much-vaunted primary care system isn’t going to call me any time soon. No word from that quarter until last night. A sotto-vocce reading of the report by a minion who wasn’t comfortable doing it. Wonder how she’d have handled it if I was a layperson and she thought I didn’t know the words?

“Invasive ductal carcinoma…features of LCIS and DCIS.”

I’d be more optimistic about what they didn’t find (a really “aggressive” cancer) if there hadn’t been a another biopsy yesterday. This one, sampling calcifications further out, was also positive. So my fantasy of joining Angelina Jolie for a subcutaneous mastectomy and immediate reconstruction flutters to the floor. Sorta like the three-page birth plan. If I’m smart, I’ll take my patient Jamie’s advice (she’s nearly due with her first baby), and “just show up” for the event, leaving the rest to the professionals. Well, I’ll try, anyhow.

About An UnCool Midwife

I'm a midwife who's been up all night for most of the last 30 years. Before that, I was editor of a small town newspaper. I left that job swearing I'd never face another 3 am deadline. Now I’m thinking what I really needed was a good night’s sleep. (And they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result.) But I miss writing, so I’ve decided to launch a blog to record some of the brain activity that occurs between naps. I’m a little worried about exposing my tender underbelly to the pointy public, but have decided to dive in and see how we all get along. Unexpectedly, this blog has become an outlet for thoughts & feelings that occur with my new diagnosis of breast cancer and its ongoing treatment.

7 responses »

  1. I wish there were words I could say that would help more than I love and admire you. But you can count on the actions. This particular Herbalist is going to move mountains to do whatever I can to help.

  2. Well just remember my friend “it’s about the…” We’ll , screw that. Just remember you have a sea of strong women (and a bunch of men too) who will be there no matter what lies ahead. You are loved immensely.

    • LOL. I really do like the t-shirt idea.
      “Screw the journey, Save the ta-tas” would probably be more politically correct than your original (great) iteration. I think we can say “screw” in the office, can’t we? Don’t have to make people uncomfortable by identifying me, specifically (I mean, I do plan to be around, you know). But my personal ta-tas–at least until Chris gets ahold of them–are out the door, I’m afraid.

  3. My dearest friend, I am so, so sorry that you have to walk this path. I wish it were with in my power to make it all go away. I can’t, but I want you to know you don’t have to walk it alone. I love you and will do whatever I can to help. I’ve got great shoulders to cry on, if you feel the need, and I’m a really good hand holder. Whatever you need from me, you’ve got it. Big hugs!

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