August 13, 2018 …. the day my world was rocked. The appointment for results. Nervous doesn’t begin to describe it. My closest friends have been praying with me since the 6th. My daughter, Meagan, goes with me.
Mrs. Ford, I am sorry, you have breast cancer. That is the only thing I processed. He talked for a while. I didn’t hear a word. My mind was racing. My heart pounding. I wanted to cry, but that is so out of character for me.
I was thinking of the family I have lost to cancer. Watching them waste away and die. God, I am not ready. I have one more child to finish raising. I have other adult children who are still trying to find themselves and get their lives going. They need their mother. One of my daughters will be getting married at my house in five days. I CAN’T have cancer! NO! It has got to be a dream. I squeeze my hand digging my nails very hard into my palms. It hurts. Nope, its not a dream. I’m still here… he is still talking.
He stops, he tells me he is sending me downstairs to the Coliseum Cancer Center. He said he knows I haven’t processed anything other than the word cancer and that it is ok – its normal. I know I can ask Meagan later about some of what he said.
I go downstairs. I sign in at the desk. They tell me it will be about an hour that the lady I need to speak with is with someone else at the moment. Meagan and I go to get some lunch while we wait. Surprise! Neither of us has an appetite. I think about having a drink, but since I’m driving I decide against it.
Its time to go back. The lady wants to talk to me about genetic testing for cancer markers. I know my family history on my mother’s side but not my biological father’s. They can now send of blood samples to test for certain genes that are predisposed for various types of cancers.
Now, this test coming back positive won’t mean I have that cancer, or that I will get it. IT just means I am more likely to get it and should be tested more frequently. I decide to have the test done and she draws my blood to send off. This test can take a few weeks, however it will help in my decision on how to handle my breast cancer. If my markers for breast cancer come back positive I am not going to want to even consider doing a lumpectomy instead of mastectomy. Time to wait some more.
IMPORTANT NOTE!! If you are considering genetic testing for cancer be sure you have life insurance first! This is one of the questions asked when you take out a life insurance policy. If you have the test and come back with positive markers for potential cancers in your future it will be VERY hard, if not impossible, to get life insurance later.
We set an appointment with the Nurse Navigator who will explain my pathology reports for my cancer. She will also answer any questions I have and help me coordinate all my doctors and keep everyone in the loop.
Time to finish getting ready for a wedding. Cancer is going to have to take a back seat. We are only waiting again anyway.