Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A sad blog post with a happy ending.

I've been thinking lately about some sad things.

My Mom passed away in February, 1994 from pancreatic cancer.  While I've moved beyond the true "hurt" of that, I miss her a lot (more than a lot).  I think about her all the time and there are many, many things that remind me of her.  I often cry when I hear certain songs or see certain movies or other things that remind me of her.  I see things and often think, "Mom, you would have loved that!"

My Step-Mom passed away this October from breast cancer.  She fought a long, hard battle.  She was brave and did all that she could to survive.  I miss her.  I especially miss her silly giggle and her always positive attitude about everything.  She was the kind of person I could only wish to emulate.

I'm sad for my Dad who lost two very special, very beautiful women.  He's lonely and I wish I could make that go away.

My Sister-in-Law had breast cancer.  She is a survivor!!  What makes me sad about this is that she had to go through surgery, chemo, and radiation when she didn't deserve to.  I understand that life isn't fair but it still sucks big time.

About two weeks ago, I went for my yearly mammogram.  I've been getting them done longer than a lot of women because my family is "loaded" with cancer.  My doctor felt we should start a baseline earlier than most women (well before my 40s). 

A few days after my yearly "squishing," I got a call from the clinic saying that the radiologist had found something "concerning" and wanted me to come back for more images and possibly an ultrasound.  I couldn't get an appointment for two weeks so the waiting game was on. 

I tried to not think about it but it was hard.  I thought of my Sister-in-Law and her successful battle.  I thought about my Step-Mom and her unsuccessful battle.  I thought about my Mom and wished she was here so I could cry on her shoulder.

My follow-up appointment was yesterday.  I got squished big time in that machine.  Lots and lots of pictures.  Then the tech asked me to come back for more after the radiologist had reviewed the first set.  I have to admit; when she called me back I thought, "This must be bad."

The radiologist came to see me and said that everything was fine.  She explained that in a mammogram, the images are 3D not one dimensional like an x-ray.  I know that but what I didn't know (which she explained) is that you can get something called "bounce back" in the image.  This can come from veins, fat or muscle.  It shows up like a "spot" on the image.  The original spot from two weeks ago wasn't there and there were some others that were more obvious (images were taken from many different angles this time).

My drive to the clinic was hard.  I was sick to my stomach and a little scared.  My drive home was happy and I felt elated.  I thought of all the people who drive home with the word cancer in their diagnosis.  I hope that for all of them, success is the path their lives will take.

It was a bag of mixed emotions for me recently but the ending was happy.  I'm so glad I can say that.


Beth said...

Thank you for sharing your story, Liz! I'm glad it had a happy ending.


Laura said...

I miss my mom every day.

I would have stopped on the way home for ice cream and potato chips and fries. Yes, lots and lots of carbs!

By the way, YAY YOU!

Liz said...

Thanks Beth!! Rock on!

Liz said...

Thanks Laura! Since I'm not on some sort of Nazi diet like you are, carbs aren't my "treat." HA HA I'd rather stop for tequila! Which, by the way, I had when Angry got home to make me his killer margarita(s)!