Today I meet with a local surgical group about excising a small benign mass in my left breast. A week ago this appointment seemed like a horrible step onto one of two paths: unnecessary surgery that would ease the medical community's mind, resulting in more pain and scarring, not to mention infection risk and emotional trauma; or surgery that would find cancer, thus requiring additional small (or large or monumental) surgeries and other treatments in the name of preventing my untimely death.
Having obtained a few second opinions and done our own research regarding this particular pathology, my husband and I are perfectly comfortable choosing the monitoring route even before we talk to the surgeon. We'll see if there's a new spin after this afternoon. However, our relief is already palpable - we are in control over what needs to be done, not the person on the other end of the phone line. There is no rush, no urgency, and no wondering what parts of our lives might be forever altered, probably for the worse. Even a bad diagnosis still can be dealt with a piece at a time.
So, before I get all maudlin and thoughtful again, I'll just pass along another small bit of the humor that helped me to communicate each part of my news to the world without scaring anyone or myself. I used it to express what was probably anger over feeling smashed and railroaded through an imperfect process versus any real fear about cancer. During all the mammograms, ultrasounds and needles, I would occasionally remember this untouched blog, named for a Tori Amos lyric that I like to say to myself but only sometimes feels true for me now.
I decided that, based on my minor and relatively short experience, I might change the name to "Everybody Else's Boobs." They certainly felt that way.