What is “my story?” I don’t really know. You see, if a story has a beginning, a middle, and an end, I’m not exactly sure where I am in the story. Possibly still at the beginning. My story is still so fresh that sometimes it’s still hard for me to talk about it. But I have — talked about it, that is — just not at one sitting, or in one blog post. It comes in bits and pieces, and even then, I find that certain things are left out, unsaid. It’s not that I mean to be mysterious, deceptive, or a liar by omission. It’s just some kind of emotional survival instinct, I think. I tell what I can. I tell, bit by bit, what I can get through. It’s kind of how I’m getting through my journey with cancer — bit by bit, day by day. A little at a time. If I look at the whole thing, I get overwhelmed. So I break it down, and I take it as it comes. The telling of the story is the same — I break it down, and I tell as much of it as I’m able. It’s all that I can do.
My name is Judy and I was 46 years old when I found out that I had Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC). I knew that I had a lump on my left breast — not always the case with IBC — and I scheduled an annual with my family Dr. Long story short, from the mammogram, I was sent to a surgeon with the personality of the table that I’m currently typing on who examined my breasts, sat back, and nearly barked at me:
That was December 20, 2007.
The short version? From various tests that I went through in basically a fog, from the end of December to the middle of January, 2008, I learned not only that I had Inflammatory Breast Cancer, but that it had metastasized to my liver and there were spots on my lungs that they couldn’t verify were cancer but may have been.
That is the beginning of my journey into the world of cancer, a journey I never would have willingly taken part of, a journey that has changed my life and that of my family forever. It’s certainly not over.
In fact, at the end of this month, June 2008, I’m scheduled to have a CT scan that will probably show that I’m OK to finish up chemotherapy and have a mastectomy of my left breast at the end of July/beginning of Aug.
Come along with me as I face the next steps of my journey, and as I share more of my journey here on this blog. I’ve also shared quite a bit of what I’ve been through on my personal blog, Just Enjoy Him: Ramblings of a Mid-Life Mom.
Stick around here, though, and you’ll get more of the story. Like I said, it just has to be told bit by bit. It’s just how I am. It’s just how I deal with it.
Otherwise, it gets bigger than I am.