Wednesday, June 7

Ready Set Go....

                                          (illustration by Raffi Anderian)

Ok, yesterday I got the results of my CT scan (chest, thorax, abdomen) and it looks like my cancer has not metastasized! YYYAAAAYYYYYYYYYY!!!!! this waiting for the tests, and then having the tests and then the waiting for the results gig really sucks. I have given up most coffee as my anxiety level had been very high lately. For a few reasons (obviously). When I was first diagnosed, and the doctor only had my ultrasound and my mammogram to look at, he suggested I would have a lumpectomy first, then chemo, then radiation. My bone scan came back clean, so I was stoked, it hadn't spread there. Then  I had my MRI which wasn't as scary as the scenes you see on TV, it made  that sounded to me like minimalist techno beep, beep, beep beep beeeeeeep.
There's a feature of being with Princess Margaret, they give you access to your results and appointments in a webpage called the patient portal. Now this is great and crappy at the same time. Great because you can see when all of your appointments come up, but crappy because if you get a scary test that is hard to interpret yourself, you have to wait until your doctors appointment to have it deciphered. So when I had my MRI and got my results 24 hours later, I read that everything was as we thought. then I got a call that my surgery had been cancelled and that I would be starting chemo almost right away. It turns out it is bigger than we thought 5cm wide by 6.5 cm long, up the side of my breast, they also saw 3 satellite spots than need to go and it got upgraded to stage 2/3. (which means it hasn't spread(stage 3) but because of my lymph node and the size it's close) I was pretty upset. Needless to say, the surgeon suggested a mastectomy instead of lumpectomy. I agree.
You see, invasive lobular carcinoma has a predisposition to be "fuzzy" around the edges, sort of like a childrens picture of the sun with the little offshoots or tendrils. They are notoriously difficult to remove with "clean margins" (all of it). And my surgeon said he could do his best but there might be some left that he cant see or get to. So I say cut it off. I want %100 cancer free, lets not fuck around with my life ok? So that's what that first picture up there is all about. that lovely girl has had a double mastectomy and had reconstruction and tattoos. Gorgeous right? anyway, I'm only having one taken and we will see how my skin reacts to the surgery and radiation.My next post will be less about the technical and more about how I've been feeling.

Just a side note WOW!!!!!!! I am so overwhelmed and grateful for all of your love and support! When I told the INTERTRON about what was happening to me, I had no idea how much love I would be getting from all of you so thank you so much. It really means a lot to me that you all have my back, and want to follow me in my journey. And I didn't mention this in the first post but  I love all of you too, and just the thought of you guys thinking I am strong has helped me stay strong. My BFF Casey has been communicating with me through Whatsapp, leaving voice messages and sending pictures, then I get to reply. It's sort of like a conversation but on your own time. If any of you Victoria peeps would like to do that you should download it to your phones!! it's nice to hear the day to day from others it makes me feel like we are sitting and having a cup of tea on a cozy afternoon. Love you.

Monday, June 5

The Next Chapter...

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news folks, but life has decided to throw me another curve ball. I have been diagnosed with breast cancer.  Invasive lobular carcinoma to be exact.
                                                       Around April 18th of this year as I was lying on the floor of my son's room, in the dark, waiting for him to FINALLY fall asleep, I decided to do a quick feel of the boobies as the right one didn't feel "right". I know it sounds weird, I didn't have any pain or any other sign that something was there, but I just had a sense of it. I was right. Deep in the tissue at about the 8 o'clock position on my right breast, there was a spot that was harder than the rest. It freaked me out, but I went to my GP right away and she sent me for a mammogram ( my first, and boy howdy was that uncomfortable!) as well as an ultrasound. They came back about three days later, as suspicious.
I have to give kudos to my amazing GP, she does not mess around! She referred me to the rapid diagnostic centre at Princess Margaret Cancer Hospital link here...they are one of the best in the world for breast cancer detection, treatment and care. I had a core biopsy and a needle aspiration of my lymph nodes on a Friday, I had the results Tuesday. the C word.
 So the good news is, my cancer is hormone positive, but her2 negative. What that means essentially is that with hormone therapy treatment after chemo, surgery and radiation, the statistics are great. I have the second most common form of breast cancer,  invasive lobular carcinoma. just a side note, it's been really interesting seeing inside my body. I mean you don't really ever get the chance right? Well I had a bone scan and saw my skeleton, and my MRI showed me my large veins and heart, and my mammogram showed me the cancer, it was strangely beautiful. The mammogram put all of the tissue in white and my cancer looked like a scorpion wrapped around my breast. Of course the news was devastating. Especially with a young child to care for, my thoughts went immediately to my family and how they would cope with this.
 I want to give a huge shout out to Miss Sarah Kramer at
who fought her own battle with breast cancer (and won!!)  and who has been my "breastfriend" right from the beginning. Thank you Sarah for the support and help. And of course to B who is my Rock. I will continue on with my story up to now, in a second blog post as I have a CT of my thorax, abdomen, and bowel tonight (to make sure it hasn't metastasized ) and I can't eat after 4, so I'm going to go eat, eat, eat!!