Thursday, April 21, 2011

An Ultrasound and a Mammogram

Let me start off by saying that no matter how much I keep telling myself that everything is going to be fine, I'm am still extremely fucking scared.  I can not help but wonder, what if?

That being said... this is my experience so far:

About a month ago, while laying in bed with my amazing boyfriend I noticed that my breast were a bit tender and began to feel around a bit on my right side...that is when I felt it... this lump/mass/THING that shouldn't be there.  I think I held my breath for a minute and tried to wish it away, but that obviously did not work, so I grabbed D's hand and placed it on my breast and asked if he felt the same thing.  D is not a firm believer in medicine, neither am I, but his immediate response was.."You better get that checked out.  Normally I say OH it will be fine, just suck it up... but YOU, you need to do something about that."  Ok, so I wasn't crazy, there IS really something there.  Sigh.

The next morning I called my trusted OB/GYN to set up an appointment...the receptionist questioned me on the nature of my visit and I choked up.  She asked again and I managed to get the words out... 'Ummm... I have found a lump in my breast.'  She quickly replied... 'Which breast?' ...without hesitation, as I am sure this is not the first time she has taken a phone call of this nature.  'Right.' I responded.  She then explained that Dr.S was on vacation for the next week and a half and that my appointment is scheduled for April 19th.  Wow, an entire month of waiting.  I contemplated going to my family physician instead because I was confident that I could be seen by him sooner than that, but I feel A LOT more comfortable with Dr S, and I feel that breast issues were more suited to be taken care of by him.  I chose not to talk to any friends or even family about my situation until I knew more myself.  It was a LONG month.

As I shared before, I had my appointment with Dr. S. on tuesday, at which time he did an exam and stated that he felt the mass to be a cyst.  He ordered an ultrasound and referred me to a wonderful RN who takes care of all breast issues.  Being an uninsured mother with a lump in the breast, I had to ask about cost.  Dr. S.  simply said, 'Let me see what I can do.'

Yesterday.  I received a call from the wonderful RN, Becky, first thing in the morning.  We talked for a few minutes, and she stated that she felt I should have a mammogram as well.  So, I went in yesterday for a mammogram and an ultrasound. 

Up first... mammogram.  I registered with the receptionist, at which point Becky came out to meet me and present me with a stack of paper work for me to complete.  As it turns out I qualified for a grant (The Coleman Grant) to cover the cost of the mammogram... and if it should be needed, the same grant will cover the cost of a biopsy.  I did not have to wait very long for my name to be called, and a sweet young girl came to greet me and take me back to radiology.   After changing into a hospital gown that ties in the front instead of the back, I was led into the room with the mammogram machine.  First she had to ask the question... "Are you, or could you be pregnant?"  I responded with 'I don't think so, but my doctor sort of put a fear in my yesterday, so I'm not sure?'  She said, "I cannot take that for an answer... Yes or No?"  Deep breath.... "No."  I said.  She had me find the lump for her so that she could make a mark telling her where it was.  And then it began.  Mammograms are not nearly as painful as I had built them up to be in my mind.  Awkward.  Yes.  Painful, not really.  She took images of both breast so that the doctor could compare them to each other.  Top view and side view.  And then we were done.  I must say it is strange to have a girl, probably 10 years younger than myself, be tugging a pulling on my breast, and then flattening them between plates.  Odd.

Next stop.... ultrasound.  I was greeted by a VERY familiar face.  Emily.  Emily was the same ultrasound tech who did my 16 week ultrasound with Sebastion... the last photos we have of him alive.  She also was the second person to tell me that we were going to have a boy.  Add to those memories...she was also the ultrasound tech who was sent to my room after Sebastion was born to do an internal ultrasound to look for left over fragments of the placenta, which there were apparently lots of because I had to have a DnC the next day.  Emily is a very sweet lady.    I cannot even begin to describe how strange it felt to be back in THAT room, and NOT be looking at an image of a baby, or to have the warm gel spread on my belly. Instead, exposing my breast to be covered in goo.  Watching the images on the monitor, again, heartbreaking, really.     'Yes' Emily responded.  She proceeded to take several images of the entire breast, with each swoosh of the images being saved, my heart sank...and then I was finished. 

Now.  I wait.  And again, the waiting is the hardest part.  I likely will not hear from my doctor until tomorrow, as thursdays are his surgery days.  I KNOW he felt confident that we are not looking at Cancer, but I still can not get the idea out of my mind until I KNOW for sure.  All I can think is  I do not want my little girl to grow up with out a mommy.  I so desperately do not want THAT life for her... or for D for that matter.  And then I also have the thought, did my son die for the same reason... was his mommy too sick to take care of him, and he was sent to heaven to be with jesus, the best care giver of all?  Aye. Aye.

I have an appointment set up for tuesday with a Breast Specialist/ Surgeon.  I may not know anything until then.  I am not one to ask for prayers very often, but please, I need all the help I can get  right now.


  1. You bet I'm praying for you! I am so sorry that you are going through this. We are all here for you. Please let us know anything you find out as soon as you can. God bless you!

  2. I'm sending a million happy thoughts and prayers your way! BIG HUG!! Kate