My turn...



Hand on heart, I can honestly say I never thought I'd be writing about my own experience with cancer, especially not metastatic cancer.

A lot has happened since Matt passed away at the end of November 2013. It's been a long road of ups and downs, moving to London, going flatting again, dabbling in online dating, all things I associated with my twenties rather than forties. To add to the emotional rollercoaster, Matt's mum was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, my sister suddenly passed away in 2016, my dad passed away Jan 2018, just shy of the great old age of 88 years old and to top it all off, Matt's youngest brother, just 10 days older than me, passed away from cancer on 19 February 2018.

While I used running as a means to cope with Matt's diagnosis, I've struggled to get into a routine or maintain motivation in London. So, due to the erratic nature of my training and limited fitness, I thought nothing of a sore hip/pelvis following a run along the canal one Sunday in September 2017. I rested, it didn't heal. I tried running on it but it was too painful to run far so I finally went to see a physio in January 2018. It was also one day in January that I felt a strange pain under my right breast, like sore ribs but different. That motivated me to coppafeel . I thought there might be something but wasn't sure, so decided to wait and see. The would be lump didn't disappear and I started to feel it more frequently so in February I finally got up the courage to see my GP. Unfortunately it was a male Locum that day and, rather than be presented with my bosoms, he suggested I come back another day! I wasn't convinced I'd have the courage to come back another day so after a tentative examination he announced he'd refer me for a non urgent mammogram.

So it was that I found myself at Charing Cross Hospital at 1000 on Saturday 3 March. I saw a clinician who again was unconvinced about the lump but sent me for a mammogram and ultra sound. If the ultra sound showed anything, they'd take a biopsy there and then. For once I was thankful for my rather ample boobs as it made squishing them in the mammogram machine a little easier. Next up, the ultra sound which I was expecting to be in and out of quick as a flash and to be told that I'd been wasting everyone's time. Turns out there were two lumps, one in the right breast and one in the lymph nodes which they took a biopsy of. I went back to the clinician who was surprised that they'd taken the biopsies but assured me that it could still just be a cyst and to wait for the results.

It was a long wait until Tuesday 20 March to head back to Charing Cross Hospital to get the results. Turns out that little lump was cancer, a ductal carcinoma, grade 2 but it was unclear whether or not it had spread to the lymph nodes so I'd need another biopsy and an MRI scan and bone and CT scans...

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