On Tuesday I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It has spread to at least one lymph node, in my armpit. Whether it's gone further than that, I do not yet know. More tests have to come back and I will meet with an oncologist in a week or two. You probably have a lot of questions, and I do, too. I can't answer most of them. I don't know what treatment I'll need. I don't know what my prognosis is. I don't know how I'll feel or how much I'll be able to work. I will keep this blog updated with my progress, so as soon as I know anything I'll try to post here.
Today, I'll share a few random thoughts. I might ramble a bit. This is a surreal experience, and weird thoughts pop into my head about all kinds of things. I'll share more in the days ahead.
It's so cliche it's almost humorous...but then, humor always has been my number one coping mechanism. But one of the things that keeps going through my mind is, "I can't believe this is happening to me. Cancer happens to other people, not me." Some other ones: "I'm only 42. How can I have cancer?" "How did I get this?" "What's that weird pain...is it the cancer?" "Will I die? What will that do to my family and friends?"
I have a wonderful support network. Amazing friends who truly care about me. They have been reaching out over the past couple days as they get the word. Thank you all...it means more to me than you know.
I will soon move in with my boyfriend, Michael. He is amazing and I will probably talk about him a lot. He has pledged to take care of me, no matter what.
I have not had health insurance for the past several years. Because of my diagnosis, they put me on Medi-Cal and everything will be covered.
During this time that I am fighting this, I'm going to be selfish and take care of myself I'm going to make sure I get the rest and care I need, both physically and emotionally. This means I will not allow any negativity in my life. I'm giving out fair warning: I will not tolerate negative talk about my prognosis/treatment, uninformed opinions of how I got this or how I should treat it, etc.
I will, however, happily welcome survival stories, "things they don't tell you" advice from those who have been through it (or advocated for someone who has), doctors, etc.
I am relatively young, very strong, and highly determined. I come from hardy German/Irish/Finnish stock. As my 75-year-old father who has never eaten a vegetable in his entire life and is ridiculously healthy and active told me, "You're my daughter. You'll be just fine." I believe him. I will fight this, I will win, and I will take you all on my journey with me.