By Kathy Reschini Sweeney, who has one and who was one
Had my post-op appointment yesterday. Everything went fine. I will now report to the Hillman Center's High Risk program.
Which reminds me - I need all my aunts, uncles and cousins with any cancer history to e-mail me the details, please. I am going to be part of a study on heredity and breast cancer and I need to take all the info with me. Your name will NOT be included, just our relationship.
Okay - so the PA (love her - and if you don't know the Physician's Assistant at your Doc's, you really need to wake up) checks the incision and makes a few comments about whether I have been lifting weights.
Me: "Well, you just can't quit training for triathlons."
PA: "Ha ha. You understand what subcutaneous layers of sutures are, right?"
Me: "Oh yeah. My Dad's head was totally open to the skull last year and I saw all kinds of shit."
PA: "Okay, wow."
Me: "Yeah, that's why I am not picking at the sutures that are sticking out like a bee's stinger. I learned from that."
PA: "Well, I guess we're grateful then. I am going to let the doctor yell at you because I can't keep a straight face."
Me: "Fair enough."
PA: "Plus, thanks for the cookies."
Me: "Finally, the truth comes out."
Enter the Doc. She says "Hi, Thanks for the cookies- you didn't need to do that, now let's take a look"
Me: "I love cookies."
Doc: "Good try. Want to tell me what you've been doing to test my careful work here?"
Me: "Nothing personal, Doc. My people aren't really good at following instructions."
Doc: "Uh huh." Then the Doc starts talking to me in a very stern voice about how I didn't do any real damage, but I was back on serious restrictions, and not to be messing around with my health. Her voice started rising a little, and then she paused and looked at me.
Me: "Yeah, I know and I'm sorry. I am behaving better now."
Doc: "Usually when I yell at a patient, they look a little scared or at least intimidated."
PA: "It's true. She hardly ever does this."
Me: "Listen, you have no idea what I deal with every day, in terms of yelling and nutty behavior. I grew up on this stuff. If I got upset every time, I'd be a drooling mess by now."
PA (trying not to laugh): "Well, THAT's a nice picture."
Doc (trying not to laugh): "Okay, okay, as long as you listen and do what I tell you from now on."
Me: "Nothing personal Doc, but I hope I never see you again in my life."
Doc (full-out laughing at this point): "Absolutely understood!"
Then the PA gave me a note to go to a secret hideaway to get fitted for a special bra and camisole. You have to have 'script to even get the number. I'm very excited about it and I have all kinds of ideas about what to put in there. But that's another blog.
REMEMBER - learn from me:
1. EARLY DETECTION saves lives - do your monthly self-exam and get an annual mammogram.
2. DIGITAL MAMMOGRAMS made the difference for me - they never would have found it so early without this technology - when you call to schedule your mammogram, ask if they have digital machines and use them.
3. LISTEN to your doc. Your body will want to return to normal right away. You will want to do the same. But it turns out (duh) there is a real reason for imposing limitations and if you don't heed them, you will pay for it in terms of more extensive recovery.