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Annette Dashofy

Sending you hugs, girlfriend. My girls don't match either. Had biopsies on both at different times, and apparently they took more from one than the other. I'm just terribly grateful that everything was benign in both.

As for the tears, God wouldn't have given them to us if he didn't intend for us to use them. They aren't a sign of weakness. They're a release to cleanse our souls when we let too much shit get cluttered up in there.


Kathy, the first realization that a chunk of boob was actually removed is, indeed, a shocker. However you will be able to deal with it much better after the healing process is over. Maybe with one bra strap hitched higher than the other. Maybe with a push-up pad, or maybe just let it be. But I can almost guarantee no one but you will notice the difference when you are dressed and out and about. And, honey, it's ok to cry. Sob your heart out. You may be a mom and a wife and a friend and a teacher and a lawyer, but you are first and foremost a woman with emotions and feelings. You do NOT have to be strong all the time. This is the time to let someone else be strong for you. I say all of this as the voice of experience. It's ok. Trust me.

Elaine A. Judge

Kak-good sharing like that. Go for it-any emotion you can to get through it. I always thought cancer was as much emotional as it is physical.

You have been through a few months of unpleasant stuff. The weeks leading up to the surgery need a release afterwards.

I remember saying to the doctor,"Could these little boobs really kill me?" (You are the only one in the family with boobs bigger than olives.

You will be "all better" soon and will be able to relate completely to someone going through the same thing. Love you.

Baltimore Jack

I always knew you were tough. Having a not so tough moment is OK!

Nancy Martin

Mine don't match either. The doc said, "That patch might fill in." Fill in?? With what? He looked a little uncomfortable and said, "Well, fat." So....how come I've got fat filling in all the other places except that one?? Nobody ever promises life will be fair, I guess.

Have more fun---my new mantra.

May I suggest WAG THE DOG? Hilarious movie, but it makes you think you're intelligent while the root beer splurts out your nose.


Kathy, I feel for you -- even though I have no IDEA how you even feel other than reading your outpouring of emotions that brought tears to my eyes. However (and a BIG however), I want to tell you about my girlfriend who, six months ago, chose to have both of her breasts removed and today is having reconstructive surgery on her one side. I pray to God that I never have to go through what either of you have. But if I ever do, I know I'll be able to draw strength from the two of you, who I consider to be two of the strongest women I've ever known in my life. You're in my prayers girlfriend!

Storyteller Mary

What Annette said -- and everybody else -- go ahead and cry. You are entitled and it helps! Pamper yourself! Chocolate ice cream helps, too, and something Laraine recommended which helped my dental pain, an herbal so won't interfere, Traumeel. Dissolve the little tablets in your mouth, and you might not need as much of the weird meds . . .
When I had biopsies, I stayed home with my big bandages until I was healed enough to not need them. I didn't want the distraction while trying to teach, and I didn't want some big jock running into me in the hall. Friends sent chocolate chip cookies.
When we figure out what's causing all these cancer attacks, we'll probably add much anger to the sorrow, but right now . . . well, I'm a bit misty as well, just thinking of all the good people going through so much.
Gentle hugs to you, and admiration for a woman of courage!


Kathy...I am gonna write another Bubbles (Boobles?) book for you. Just for you.

In the meantime, may I suggest Lucy, the Marx Bros. (I know, we have different humor tastes.) 30 Rock. Get a fucking pedicure. Drink champagne. (Unless it messes with the meds in which case drink hot chocolate). Doodle a fake tattoo.

And, yeah, let 'em see you break down. They need to know. They're not little kids. (Husband included, sorry Tom). This is Grownupville and everyone needs to adult up!

I am printing out and saving these for when my time comes, sooner than I'd like.

Elaine Viets

You need to cry, Kathy. You've had a loss. OK, it's not like your whole life was washed away in a tsunami, but you've lost part of yourself and that's something to cry about. Please don't start comparing pain. That's not measurable.
Watch something funny. Listen to your favorite music. You will feel better. Soon.

Mary sutton

Kathy, I don't know you, but your post touched me. I lost my mother to stage 4 metastic breast cancer in December of 2001. That was the second time she had it. The first time she was diagnosed, was 1987 (or so). I was 14.

Back then, the only option available to her was a radical mastectomy of the right breast. She did not opt for reconstructive surgery (because she was sick of surgery) and wore a prosthetic boob for the rest of her life. Talk about mismatch.

A few years earlier, she had a hysterectomy. Three large babies in four years was just too much for her. I distinctly remember her being extremely distressed after the mastectomy: "They are taking everything that makes me a woman," she said, tears pouring down her face.

Rationally, we know that boobs and a uterus are not the only things that make us women. Emotionally, well, that's different. Those things help grow and nourish new life (I've got two of my own who were sustained by my C-cups). It's a powerful bond.

We're allowed to mourn our bodies when we "lose" parts of them. We're allowed to cry. And your tears don't mean you aren't strong enough to walk this path. They just mean you're human. I believe that when God sees our tears, he knows we're really just asking for a little more support at the moment.

I'll be hoping and praying for the best possible news from your biopsy.

Thanks for the honest emotion you've shown.


Well, I was very unhappy when my colon was removed back in 1997, but part of that was that they kept me on morphine for five days, and, well, morphine is depressing. But the positive was that I would be cured (which it turned out was not correct) and that they would be putting me back together and obviating the need for that gross bag in several months (which did happen).

judy merrill larsen

Wow, Kathy, this is amazing. You are amazing. Thank you for sharing all of this, not just the easy parts (although there are likely no easy parts).

Kathy Reschini Sweeney

Wow. I can't tell you how much your responses mean to me. I hesitated about posting this one at all because, really, there is enough bad crap in the world to read about, I hate to add to it.

But STOP the PRESSES - I see right up there, in writing, that the fabulous Sarah Strohmeyer mentioned the "B" word: Bubbles!! Now that is what the world needs more of - Bubbles!

Thanks too for all the links people sent via e-mail. I know there are things I can buy to fill in the divot. I just didn't want to deal with it yet. Hell, I might get one of those water bras, crank it up to ten and get stuck in door ways!


Carol Robinson

When the need to cry it out is there but I just will not allow it I watch sappy movies. Ghost, Always, All of Me. . . any manipulative tear jerker will do. It helps if it's also funny so I don't get too maudlin. Once the dam is broken and all the tears are used it's easier to go on. Here's a long distance hug and prayers for good news tomorrow.


Kathy, please cry. Long and loud, if you need to. Yes, there's a lot of bad stuff in the world, and yes there are people worse off than you are, but that will never change. That, you can't control. But this is happening to you, and every piece of you is important. There should be no scale of how big or little it is in comparison to anything and anyone else.

You can rationalize that it could be much much worse and you should be grateful it's not, but listen to me: IT STILL SUCKS. And it is okay--no, make that is is GOOD--to cry when something in your life sucks.


I'm serious, Kathy. It opens with Bubbles on the car waving to the crowd as a princess...until you realize it's the Halloween parade. (YOUR IDEA!)

Tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow you'll get the call that it was all taken care of and you can start on the next step to recovery.


Sweetie, if you have been holding strong for six weeks, you are SO entitled to let it go for a while. I love what Annette said, about God giving us tears so we would use them. You needed that release. You needed that time to acknowledge that yes, you might have the best situation but it's still damned overwhelming. Good for you for letting yourself have that time and freedom and release. And there is a huge difference between adding to the crap of the world and being honest, open, and sharing the reality of the journey. Don't ever think you're doing the former. Never never never.


I think I want to create a new condition which so many of us have today -- we who try not to grieve, cry or be upset because we know so many have it worse. Yeah, well guess what? This stuff hurts on many levels. Those tears were healing tears, and I'm glad you let down. Doubly glad you wrote it.


I so understand when you say "It will be damn near impossible to tell when your loved one hits the rough spots, because - especially if she's a Mom like me - we try to keep it together." I don't think I ever let my cancer treatment really let me down, but I definitely tried to keep it together. I actually had a much harder time when my grandson neared the end of his treatments because he got so ill from the meds. He never let on much either. He even continued to take 3 classes for his freshman year while he was battling Hodgkin's lymphoma. He's doing fine now; blood back to normal too. He'll have another PET scan next month, but they think it's all taken care of.

Hang in there & know that lots of us can empathize, but we'll never be in your shoes. But we'll (I'll) be supporting you all the way!

lil Gluckstern

Yu are so great. And don't try too hard not to mourn. It is healing. Anthis is a hard time, just waiting for results, and getting used to your new image. It's been 8 years since my mastectomy, and every once in a while I go, oh yeah that happened. Please take care, and pamper yourself.


Kathy, it sounds to me that you are hitting all the mile markers. I gave myself two days to recover too. Well, it didnt quite work out that way! (Remember that job interview I had on Day 10? What was I thinking?!) I can't wait til you hear your good news tomorrow. And books were my friends too during the slow recovery. ox


First of all, love you so much, secondly, tears are really okay, really. Tears prove many things, but mainly that we are human and it's ok to have feelings of sadness and to experience pain, and most importantly it proves you are not a zombie! Go GG's!!!

Laura (in PA)

Ramona basically said what I was thinking, except she said it much better. Sure, it could have been worse. Thank the dear Lord it wasn't. But it still sucks, and it still hurts, and you're so entitled to cry about it. Let somebody else be strong for a while. I'm sure the payback due you is astronomical.

Watch Graham Norton. :) Hugs.

Diana in STL

Your honesty is one of the things that makes your blogs most interesting. I think way too many of us feel like we have to keep a stiff upper lip for everyone else. You are definitely entitled to a good cry (or several) now that it is over. I'm sure you will receive good news tomorrow but you will still be allowed to cry because it is good news.

Karen in Ohio

Kathy, you are well-loved, my dear. By your family, and by your TLC/LIB family. Picture yourself surrounded and cocooned by our good feelings for you. Cry for the release; it's better than breaking things, anyway.

It's good for your kids to know what is really going on, by the way. There is no sense pretending this is nothing; it is something, although we are all praying it's just a bump in the, er, bumps, and not a big deal.

I remember driving home after getting the news, while pregnant with my third child, that I had a broken jaw (oral surgery gone way, way wrong), and that I needed to have surgery to correct it, necessitating having it wired shut for a month. Stunned does not begin to cover it, and even though it wasn't truly a life-threatening deal, or one that compromised the way my clothes fit (well, it did--I lost 10 pounds), it was still terrifying, and I sobbed the whole way home. In fact, it was harder than finding out I had to have a hysterectomy a year later.

Any time we have unplanned changes, especially to the perception we hold of ourselves, it can be traumatic. This too shall pass, sweetie.

The Bridesmaids. I laughed until I cried.

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