It’s been a fun few days. I thought my left boob was trying to kill me.
(It wasn’t, you can read in peace).
When you turn 40, the doctors unleash a string of tests on you to check you’re okay. (This is a good thing, I am not complaining). Early in November, I had my first mammogram, which was a bit weird and uncomfortable but fine…and it came back clear. Then, last week, I had the delight of my three-yearly pap-smear (UK – just a regular smear) test. This includes a routine breast examination…and my doctor found a lump.
I’ll tell you something. When you hear the words ‘lump’ and ‘breast’ in one sentence from your doctor, your brain immediately goes ‘lump, breast, cancer, lose hair, might die’. Despite being rational about it in my head, my heart kind of freaked out.
I had a weekend between the consultation and being able to go for an ultrasound to check it out. That’s a long time to not think about dying. Luckily, I had the Dude’s birthday and then his party to distract me and we had a lovely time, but it was always there at the back of my mind.
On Monday, I went for the ultrasound. I went alone, which may not have been the wisest move as once I arrived in the dungeon (basement ultrasound department), I found myself incredibly nervous. First up was another mammogram and this one was considerably more painful. The radiographer took the pictures to the doctor on duty…and he asked for two more pictures. At that point, I thought something very rude in my head.
Two more painful pictures ensued.
Next up, the ultrasound. I was pretty scared now. The lady did some ultra sounding and then went to get the doctor (as is routine) and he came in. When he told me that it was all clear, I felt this enormous weight off my shoulders…and started crying on the poor man.
This blog post may not belong in a running blog…but it’s important to talk about. Did you know that when you check your boobs, you’re supposed to be laid down? A quick soapy prod in the shower isn’t what you need to do! I had no idea. This website has a good suggestion on how to check your girls.
So there you go. Officially, I don’t have anything to worry about but I’m still unnerved and I’ll tell you something, I’ll be much more vigilant in checking these days. Once my boobs have stopped hurting from the mammograms (next year, maybe!), I’ll be checking very thoroughly and regularly, and I’d be grateful if you checked yourselves as well. You don’t have to be old (even 40!) to get breast cancer and just being faced with the prospect was enough to make me incredibly grateful for pretty much everything in my life.
Perfect for Thanksgiving, eh?
I’m thankful for my healthy boobs. Even though they’re small, droopy and uneven, they’re not trying to kill me. Thank goodness.