Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Pre-op.

Please do not read this post if you are offended by language or my discussing my body parts (i.e. those few male friends/relatives I have reading this who probably don't need to know such things)

I have had to write this post for a while, but desperately not wanted to. Monday I signed a consent form allowing for surgery to perform a modified radical mastectomy and removal of all left axilla lymph nodes. What an ugly ugly statement. What a shitty thing to sign away permission to remove part of your body.

I never thought I was "that girl". I have had a love/hate relationship with my boobs almost since I've had them. I didn't develop early, but when I did, I certainly caught up - I was a D until I had Jack, when I turned into a DD for the past 2.5 years. I'm also petite, I'm barely 5'3", and during my good years, around 120, so carrying that much on top brought attention quite often. I'm not going to say I never used it to my advantage, in fact I know for certain that I got my first job because of my boobs. No, nothing dirty, I was 16 for goodness sakes, but I was informed a few years later by a friend that when I walked into Sam Goody looking for my first job it was not my sparkling wit or non-extensive music knowledge that won me the minimum wage prize - no, it was my rack. However, far more often these things got in the way. Many forms of excersize have long been uncomfortable, and clothes have often not fit correctly. There was an apparatus on the O-course in boot camp that was called, jeez, I can't remember the name, something along the lines of the son of a bitch, something like that. Anyway, it involved mounting a large round log about 4 feet off the ground and then jumping to another one about 3 feet away and a foot or two higher, with your upper body taking the brunt to grab on... I still distinctly remember the feeling of catching a giant log with my chest taking the brunt of it, that was over 12 years ago. Needless to say, I personally could never understand the concept of a boob job - why on God's green earth would people choose to make their chest bigger?? I would choose to be smaller in a heartbeat.

Now I am less than a week out from having a breast removed. I never thought I would be affected like this. I know there are women who have even refused to have a mastecomy and have lost their lives because of it, and that just confounded me - how could you choose to lose your life over something I've spent a good part of my life wishing away? When this whole thing started, the tumors and inflammation were so large and extensive that my breast was almost deformed. It was uncomfortable to wear a bra. I wanted nothing but to have this thing, this thing that had betrayed me and was no longer really a part of me removed as soon as possible. But after the chemos, all inflammation has gone away and the tumors have shrunk so much that I look and feel pretty normal again... it looks and feels like nothing is really wrong, and now I'm pissed off. I'm so angry that I have to have this surgery, and worse than that, I'm embarrassed, and that kills me, because there is nothing to be embarrassed about. But the fact that I won't even get a prosthetic until after I heal is just totally and completely humiliating to me. Why, why should it be? If I was having an arm or leg amputated I wouldn't be embarrassed to have people see me. And that really pisses me off even more, that I feel like that. This all of a sudden really fucking sucks to me. The chemo I could handle, the hair loss, really no big deal to me at all. But this, this really fucking sucks, and the fact that I feel that way makes me even more angry.

I'm 37, I shouldn't have to deal with this now - but neither should most other people. I expected this, this cancer, but I expected it in about 20 years, and much less agressive. I've never asked "why me?" because that's just dumb...good and bad things happen to good and bad people all of the time. I do not believe God made me have cancer or anything like that. Have I maybe asked a few times why other people don't have it instead of me? Perhaps I have, I'm not a saint. I perhaps have asked why my uncle who has been an alcoholic and smoker for the past 40 years and mooched off of my grandparents for the past 8 hasn't developed this. Again, I'm only human.  But it's the intensity of the feeling about this surgery that has blindsided me. I don't want to feel so much over this, to give it so much power and thought, it doesn't deserve the time and energy. So many people deal with things that are much larger than this.

I will get through it, I will learn to live with it, but it will always suck, and I am still very much pissed off about this. Hopefully I can come out on the other side using this anger for something positive - I guess only time will tell.

4 comments:

  1. Oh Jamie. You are allowed to feel all of these things about the cancer and the surgery. It is completely normal and part of the healing process. I'm so sorry you have to go through all of this.

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  2. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?

    Thanks,

    Cameron

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  3. Hi Jamie, I just wanted to say that you inspire me and make me smile. I'm 41 years old and live in the UK. I came across your blog whilst looking at babyrabies on Facebook. Although I'm not pregnant i do have a 2 year old and am in the middle of chemotherapy as I too had an aggressive cancer in my left breast so in part I can empathise. My anger came with chemo as to be honest I found the mastectomy a breeze - I have my moments looking at my lopsided body and ugly scar but hey ho it's me. I hope all goes well for you and there is lots more singing and dancing in the future x lots of loving blessings Janet x

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    1. Thanks Janet! I hope you get through the rest of chemo okay and that we are both singing and dancing for a long time to come :)

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