I won’t make this long and drawn out but I had a major health scare that I have been dealing with. A month ago I was putting on deodorant and felt a lump under my arm. I quickly asked my husband to come feel it and make sure I wasn’t crazy. He agreed that it felt weird and asked me to make a doctors appt. I went to the doctor and surprise the lump was no longer there. My doctor suggested I get a mammogram. I’m only 36 but he said it would be great for me to get a baseline (something to compare it to when I’m forty).
So I scheduled the meeting even though deep down inside I just wanted to ignore it. I went a week later for my mammogram. I told a few friends to get their feedback on what to expect and thought nothing of it. It was not as painful as I thought. The nurse kept repeating that I may be called back for additional images because it was my first time and hard to get all the images needed. She repeated that I should not stress if I get a callback. Well, you guessed it, I got called back for a 3D mammogram and an ultrasound if needed. But of course, I did not listen to her warning and I freaked out. I asked my husband to go with me just in case something went wrong. So off we go. I was nervous but the nurse made it sound like a normal routine. The great news was I would get results right away.
Well, the 3D mammogram went fine and it was time for the ultrasound. As the radiologist was looking we were laughing and talking about growing up in a small town and then she went silent. She started taking a few pictures in a concentrated area and my heart sunk. She finished and said I could get dressed and the doctor would give me the results. Her demeanor changed and I knew something was wrong. My husband must have felt my energy from the lobby because the front desk clerk peaked her head in the room and said he was on his way back to the doctor’s office to hear the results. I am not even sure if he could be back there but I am so glad he did. The next words the doctor said sounded like “blah, blah, blah, blah . . . it might be breast cancer and you need to come in for a biopsy”. As you can imagine, I immediately thought about my friends and family that have been affected by cancer. I started to cry and looked at my husband while he kept it together for the both of us.
I told a few of my praying friends to make sure I had some prayer warriors on the same mission. I could not stop thinking about all that I had left to do if I were to die. While telling my friends, I was so shocked to hear that so many had dealt with the same issues. Many dealt with it alone never telling anyone. Some of the stories were victorious and others left my friends depressed and suffering in silence. I could not believe it. I had no idea of some of the stories I was hearing. Here I was crying and carrying on and so many women in my circle had dealt with similar or more serious health concerns.
Why wasn’t anyone saying anything?
Where were those Facebook posts?
On with the story. The biopsy was scheduled the following week while my husband was out of town. We both hated it but knew we could not put it off. My two besties (Shout out I’na and Clo) took me and it was great to have so much support. I received text messages, virtual hugs, and an outpour of love from my circle. I was nervous but wanted to find out what was wrong with me. The procedure was painful. I won’t go into the details because this post is longer than I thought but it was not easy breezy. I left in pain and ready to go to bed before the kids came home and I had to act like life was normal.
The hardest part was waiting the 6 days for the results. I finally got the callback and found out I was cancer FREE!!! I shouted, cried, danced, screamed and everything else you can imagine. I did find out that I have an enlarged lymph node under my arm that we need to keep an eye on. If it does not go down I will have to have it surgically removed. It is not cancer but it is not something I need to ignore. I am grateful that my God saw fit to not have cancer as part of my story but I did learn a few things during this little health scare of mine.
- Life is short and we don’t have a lot of time. You know I use to say I was grateful to wake up each day but honestly, I took that for granted. I am truly thankful for each day that God allows me to live.
- Be kind to people because you never know who is suffering in silence. I had a few clients and coworkers that were a little rude. I can’t be mad at them because they had no idea but it was a reminder to me that you should always be kind. Everyone is going through something.
- My husband really is my rock. I love that man. I mean I knew I loved him but I realized that I REALLY love him.
- Get your ish in order. I was scrambling to find my life insurance, bank account numbers, and other important documents. I also do not have a will. It is embarrassing to say it out loud but it is my truth and I need to get one ASAP.
- Go to the darn doctor. My doctor asked me to get a mammogram last year and I didn’t. I am so thankful that I was able to find out about my enlarged lymph node now.
- I have to finish this book. God gave me a book to write and I have been procrastinating and I need to get it out of my head and onto paper before I leave this earth.
- I am grateful for my network. Do good to people and they will do good to you. I may not have a ton of money or time but I do pour into people and I felt the love during this hard time.
- I really do love my children and my family. My kids get on my damn nervous and many times I want to run away but I am reminded that I cherish their love every day.
The main lesson I want you to learn while reading this is that many people are suffering in silence. The bank teller, your waitress, your mean coworker and even your closest girlfriend. I am not saying everyone should tell all their business on social media but I am saying you don’t have to suffer in silence. Tell someone because you are not alone.
Remember to be kind to people because you never know what someone is going through and you might need someone to be kind to you.