Monday, October 1, 2012

Life Lately

I’ve put off writing this post.

I don’t know why, my Mother says I’m in denial.

I think I’m just trying to find the right words, the perfect words.

In order for you to understand my point of view, I think I’ll tell you about my grandmother.

The summer before I began college, my grandmother was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. My freshman year was one of the most wonderful years of my life but it was also one of the hardest. I watched my grandmother deteriorate. I watched her suffer through the chemo. I remember the day she shaved her head because it was too traumatic to watch it fall out. I remember her port; the nurse drew flowers around it to cover the bruising. I was there on her good days, as well as the bad. She finished the chemo and began radiation treatments. She and my grandfather temporarily moved to Houston so she could receive her treatment from world renowned doctors at M.D. Anderson. A year after her diagnosis, the summer before my sophomore year, she passed away. In the last year of her life, I had become so close to my Grammy. I grew up 3 hours away from my grandparents, so being 30 minutes from them (in college) was such a blessing.



Fast forward to today.

A few weeks ago my mother went in for her annual mammogram and they found something unusual. They did a biopsy and the results came back positive for breast cancer. The night my mom told me of her diagnosis, I felt the carpet being pulled out from under me. I was brought back in time, to the day I had the same conversation with my Grammy.

I was really sad for a day and cried a lot, but now I’m pulling it together and moving forward.

Unlike my grandmother, they caught my mother’s cancer early. You should know, my grandmother missed her annual mammogram and that is why cancer went undetected. Thankfully, my mother has never missed a mammogram.

Last week, my mother had a lumpectomy (where the doctors took out the cancer). My mom is doing well; she is recovering and has been cleared to start jogging again.

Unfortunately, the results from pathology weren’t as we expected. It is all very confusing but basically, the cancer has spread and they have recommended she get a mastectomy (where they remove her breast). They also want to test her lymph nodes. If the cancer has spread to her lymph nodes, she will undergo chemo. However, the doctor has assured my mother that that outcome (the chemo) is extremely unlikely.

I’m so inspired by my mother. She remains positive and perfectly content with all of this. She keep’s saying that she has surrendered to God. That it is in his hands.

It will be a while before we know anything else. My mom wants to get a second opinion from doctors in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. She will meet with several plastic surgeons to find out her best options for reconstructive surgery.

Praise the Lord, this is not life threatening. The cancer is in stage 1. That’s right ONE. -Never missing a mammogram is so important y'all.

As most of you know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I ask all of you to be aware of your bodies. Talk to your loved ones. Ask your mothers and grandmothers if they get an annual mammogram.

*Side note: I spoke with my doctor and she said the average age to start mammograms is 40.

My mom’s cancer is treatable because she was diligent with her annual screenings.





Also, please keep us in your prayers. I’m not sure what the next few months have in store for us, but I know that with God’s grace we will be just fine.

8 comments:

  1. Oh girl, I am so sorry! My grandma was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was in college too. Thankfully she only had a lumpectomy and is doing fine now. My mom has had several scares already. I'll be praying for your mom. I can't imagine how terrifying that must be!

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    1. Thank you Michelle. I really appreciate your prayers :-)

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  2. Keeping your family and your mom in my prayers!

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  3. My heart goes out to you in this difficult time, and I praise that your mom's cancer was caught early and that you are using this as an opportunity to remind people to be diligent about their health screenings! If caught in time, breast cancer has a 90% survival rate, and yet we lose beautiful women to breast cancer every year. It drives me absolutely nuts and breaks my heart. Anyway, off of my soap box! I'll be praying for your family.

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  4. I recently started following you. I am so sorry to hear about both your mother and grandmother. I will be keeping ALL of you in my prayers. As it happened I was at a fundraiser for the Gloria Gemma foundation tonight and the theme this month is that breast cancer is not your grandmothers cancer. Check early and check often. I am 34 and will be going in for a mammogram ASAP.

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  5. I am so proud of your Mom also. She has the most positive attitude! You KNOW I have and will continue to pray for her and your precious family. She is going to be just fine. I just know it!! I'm here for your Mom and the whole family. She is very precious to me and I am so blessed to have her as my sister! Love you BB!!

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  6. As I read this, I got chills. I am so sorry to hear about this news. I can't even imagine the emotions you and your family are having. I am running in the Race for the Cure in OKC at the end of this month and I will be thinking of your family! Stay strong and you have such a beautiful family!

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