A long wait

Oct 11, 2013

I'm at the Leisure Centre at the moment. Child No 1 is in her gymnastics class and Boy Child is sat with me playing Worms on his iPad.

It’s been 48 hours since I was at the QEII in Welwyn having a mammogram, scan and biopsy that will tell me what the increasing number of lumps in my left breast are.

The big lump has been around since the beginning if May. I did what I needed to and went to the GP straight away. She didn’t seem worried and told me it was probably hormonal changes. I wasn’t convinced, so told her I wanted to come back for her to have another look. Again, she told me not to worry, but would refer me if I was worried. Worried? Of course I was worried! I’ve breast fed both my kids for over a year each, and watched my boobs go through all sorted of weird changes. This wasn’t normal.

I got an appointment at the local breast unit for a scan at the beginning if June. I was seen by the doctor, and then scanned. I was quite sure that the area of my breast where the lump was, wasn’t scanned, but, I’m not the expert, so didn’t really push the point when I was told it was normal breast tissue. The doctor said he would send me another appointment in 3 months so that we could discuss options. Possibly an operation.

Three months went by, the big lump got bigger and two more lumps developed. The doctor scanned Big lump again and found fluid which either previously wasn’t there, or missed. She decided I should have more scans as well as a biopsy, as if Big Lump was a cyst, it would be possible to drain it.

So, that brings us to Wednesday.

If you’ve never had a mammogram before, and most women don’t until the screening programme kicks in at 50, it’s an uncomfortable experience with your boob manhandled into position by a radiographer and then squashed between two plates. Not very pleasant, but no big deal.

So, then on to the ultrasound. The radiologist had looked at my mammograms and decided there was an area he wanted to look at in more detail as well as Big Lump. So he scanned very thoroughly, including areas that I hadn’t been previously worried about.

Then came the biopsy.

I hadn’t expected to sign a consent form, or to have local anaesthetic. After seeing the size of the biopsy needle, and the fact they had to use a scalpel to break the skin to get it in, I realise why they were necessary. They took 3-4 specimens from two different areas of my boob. Given that Big Lump is still with us, I can only assume it wasn’t possible to drain it.

When they had finished and they had cleaned me up, I was told that the radiologist had found some calcium which can be an indicator of cancer.


Since I first found this lump, the medical professionals have been telling me that Big Lump isn’t cancer and I shouldn’t be worried. But I’ve now got multiple lumps, discharge and to top it off, Calcification. Awesome!

Of course, I’ve been googling, and scaring myself. But I’ve got to wait until the 23rd for the results.

This is going to be a long two weeks.

Ross is away, but has cut his trip short so he’ll be back late tomorrow night. He’s also cancelled his trip which was scheduled for when I get the results. He is my rock. Keeps me from going mental and is always pragmatic. I realise this isn’t easy for him, but I just need him to be strong for us both for a little while.

Imogen has seen the plasters covering the biopsy wounds and asked about them. I didn’t know what to say, so fobbed her off. She asked again yesterday, so I told her that I’d had some tests as I had something in my booby that shouldn’t be there and the doctors needed to find out what it was. She seemed happy with the explanation. I haven’t mentioned the C word. She knows what it is, as Grandad has had cancer. We ran the Race For Life in July and I thought it important to explain why it was important to raise money for cancer research.

Felix knows something is up but doesn’t really understand. He’s been around Imogen when we’ve discussed it.

So here we are. In a strange limbo of trying to prepare for an unknown outcome. I don’t know what it might be, but I have to prepare myself that I may be told I have breast cancer. I’m hoping its not. I really am. Because that would suck.

But then if its not, what on earth is causing these lumps? And the discharge and the calcium?

And if its not, then it’s two weeks of worrying for no reason. And why I don’t want to tell the world, “I’m waiting for results that will tell me if I have cancer or not.” “Nope, I don’t…as you were”.

So, hoping for the best, preparing for the worst.

I might drink some wine tonight. And play with Merlin, our new kitten, who we got on the way home from the hospital on Wednesday. He’s lovely. The other two cats aren’t too impressed.