July 8, 2008

Update On My Mom & Some Very Important Thoughts

The Breast Cancer Site
Do you see my new link on the right. Thing is, I have been wanting to add a link to a breast cancer site for some time now. Long before my mother was diagnosed. Well, this one spoke to me.
The reason my mom will be okay, is because she does have a mammogram every year. She always has. Last year, there was not a single thing to be concerned about, and within a year she was diagnosed with breast cancer at her very next mammogram. So, if my mom didn't have her yearly mammogram, she wouldn't even know that she was in the early stages of breast cancer. It takes no time at all for this monster to take over.
I haven't had a mammogram. I will be 40 this year, in all honesty I am very flat chested and never worried about it. I am stupid to think that because I am flat chested that I would notice it if it was there. I am SO WRONG! My mom's area is the size of a dime, and it wasn't even something she felt. It was found during her mammogram. The other areas of concern that they found were even smaller, you would never have known they were there and they were only found because of her MRI.
We all know about cancer, and we as women are all VERY aware of breast cancer. But so many of us are so clueless, including me. I have had a referral form from my OBGYN for over four years. I know that because she gave it to me before my youngest was even conceived, so it is more like five years. It sits in my file that contains all of my bills. I see it on a regular basis and think to myself, "Oh, I really need to call. I'll do it next month". I hope I never regret that. I am going to call today, in fact, hold on.... found it. I'M CALLING TODAY!
And I just know, that someone is reading this, that hasn't had a mammogram, that is supposed to. Someone is reading this for a reason... is it you?
So, now onto my mom. One week from today, my mom will be hooked up to her IV to put dye into her body to help them map out what they are doing. She is having this monster removed from her body next week at 3:00. They will remove her lump, another spot in the same breast, and one lymph node. They will do all of this, without putting my mom completely under because if they do so, it can cause her to go blind (another medical condition that she has). Can you believe that when they took the first biopsies, she was awake and watching. She wanted to see what was going on. She wanted to watch this surgery as well, but thank God the doctors told her it just wasn't possible. So they will dope her up as much as they can without putting her completely under. Oh my!
Depending on how well the surgery goes, they will determine the amount of radiation treatment she will have. I never knew what this consisted of. If it goes well, they will actually leave a small opening, which is my understanding, where they will insert radioactive pellets twice a day for x amount of days. Isn't that freakin' wild? Did you know that? I did not. I didn't really know any details until my mom was diagnosed, and I still have so much to learn.
I am so relieved that her surgery is now planned. And you know what else, you, the reader that has not had a mammogram yet, this is one VERY busy doctor. This cancer monster is all around us. I have met so many breast cancer survivors in less then a year, it isn't even funny. And I knew these people were brought into my life for a reason. I just thought the reason was going to be that I would be the one with breast cancer.
I told my mom, "We are finally at the top of the hill and will start our travel down. And when we reach the end, our journey with cancer will hopefully BE OVER!"
Please, please, please, as I know many of you already are, keep my mom in your prayers. I will say it again and again. Prayer is the key to life. Prayer is the reason that my mom's other areas were benign, prayer is the reason my mom is getting through this so well, prayer is the reason I haven't had a complete break down. Prayer is all we need. So please continue to pray for her.
YOU ARE READING THIS FOR A REASON! Early detection is the KEY to conquering this stuff!
God bless, much love!
P.S. I am having my first mammogram this Thursday at the same clinic my mom goes to. She is coming with me.


Kathy~Vintage Snaps & Scraps said...

What a wonderful post you have just written to us all. You do have a way with words sweetheart, and I am sure that you will touch someone and they will make that first appointment as you just did. You are so very special Rhonda.
I am glad to have the update on your mom, as I have told you before I think of you two a lot. My continued prayers and very special thoughts for you both.
Keep you chin up!

Jalal said...

Rhonda.....What A beautiful reminder. I just wanted to tell you that you both are in my prayers & that I am 37 and have already had a mammogram. I have a 30 yo friend who KNEW something was wrong & had to FIGHT for a mammogram.Unfortunatly she was right...she then had to fight for her life. SHE WON!
Good for you for taking your own advice!!


Popsicles & Lollipops said...

Keeping you, your mom and the rest of your family in my prayers daily, Rhonda-
Your mom is a very brave lady who will fight this and win. Thank goodness for early detection. I am happy you are heading to get your mammogram and I hope you find all is well upon receiving the results.

My Crafty Little Page said...

Rhonda, what a wonderful post. I'm overdue for a mammogram so you've given me a prompt. You and your mother are in my prayers. I always follow the updates on your blog - I hope she knows how may people from all over are praying for her. Blessings, Nancy

Sherry said...

Excellent post Rhonda, excellent thoughts and well said.

Firstly...I am glad that your mother's surgery is imminent. Actually, I do appreciate her wanting to be aware during the biopsies (I did too) and I'm glad that they can do the surgery without putting her completely out.

Radiation has changed so much over the years and depending on the type of the tumour and where it is, there are other ways (i.e. the pellets) that can be used vs. the every day under the unit for the "zap".

Isn't there a sense of empowerment when you are finally "doing" something with this? You feel so much more hope than when you are waiting. The waiting is the worst.

As for you -- I'm so glad you are having your mammogram. I know they wait until we are older to start screening, but now that your mother has been diagnosed your age won't play a part and you need to start screening.

Self exams are important as well but mine couldn't be felt in a self-exam (and my doctor is thorough). It was a mammogram that alerted us -- and I have them yearly. I'm off for a follow up one on Thursday. There's still a sense of anxiety around this -- and always will be now I expect. But thank heavens for the technology.

Hugs to you and your mother and you know you are always in my thoughts and prayers! ♥