An explanation...

Why Foob? I had a double mastectomy, and at the time, the plastic surgeon put "expanders" under the muscles in my chest. Every 2-3 weeks, they were filled with more saline, in preparation for my reconstructive surgery. They were very full and hard. Uncomfortable. One time, one of my sons gave me a hug and then said "Your foobs are hard!" Hee, hee, hee! My kids have this endearing habit of combining words. So, "Foobs" are fake boobs. Which I will still have, even after the reconstruction.

Foob Babe - that would be me!
"The only courage that matters is the kind that gets you from one moment to the next." ~Mignon McLaughlin


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Saturday, June 13, 2009

IF... THEN...

It's gone. Really. The doctor cut the cancer out and then cut out all the tissue that it could possibly come back in (mastectomy). Then there was the 5 months of chemo treatments that killed all of the other cancer "seeds" (as my doctor calls them) that were sent throughout my whole body while I had cancer. The scars are healing. My nails are almost grown out. My hair is coming back. I'm on the mend. I'm trying to get back to the way things were before cancer. BUT. There are days when I think the cancer will probably come back. Days when I know that's what I'll die from. It happens to so many people.. 3, 4, 5, 20 years later. I try not to think about it, but it's there in my mind all the time. I know I should just be grateful that the breast cancer is gone, and get on with my life and stop waiting for it to come back. That's easier said than done. Believe me.

I think I'm scared because the only plan my oncologist has for the future is to see me once a year (he'll see me more often for the next two years), and see how I'm feeling. Huh? He says that IF I have a cough that won't go away, or an ache in a muscle that won't clear up, THEN we'll do some testing. Wow. That's just... stupid, insane. Especially when I was HER2 positive (fast-growing, super cancer, remember?). I need to do some research. I'm not sure if HER2 is something that is always there, or if it is completely cleared up with the Herceptin I'm taking. I don't know.

So, no mammogram, obviously. No MRI (that doesn't really work on my chest anyway - but it probably does on the rest of my body). No scans. Nothing. Until I'm already sick. Huh. So, if the cancer comes back, and there is no testing, then won't it be really far advanced when we find it?! YES. It. will. I just know it. Why can't I have some kind of full body scan every year?

I don't want to die from cancer. I don't want to die at all. I want to send my last three sons on missions. I want to see them come home and get married. I want to watch as they succeed in life. I want to play with my grandbabies. I don't want to leave Rick. I don't want to leave anyone.

See what I mean? I'm thinking about stupid things. I know I should be grateful that the cancer was caught so early and that it is gone. I know there are other cancer patients who are much worse off than I ever was. I know all this. But, my mind still goes there in quiet moments. IF... THEN... Yeah, right.

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