It has been two years since the wheeled me away. I am not one to have a celebration of any kind when these dates come up I find them too intense. They hit you in the face like WWF smack down. Sometimes you see them coming and try to prepare other times they come at you with no warning. I obviously remember very clear that my mastectomy was in July but with kids home (I friggin can not wait for September) I lost track of the date. Until I downloaded this stupid "Timehop" app all the cool kids are doing. And it gave me a friendly reminder that it has bee 2 years since the amputation of my breasts. What a concept, to remove ones breasts? I mean come on say what you want it is hard to say good bye to them. They are part of a women on so many aspects, we literally grew up with them. And now because some screwed up cells are being stupid and dumb they have to come off. It seems cut and dry but you must not forget that breasts are hormone producers removing them messes with our hormones. Crap no one told me that. Its almost like PMSing for 2 years , blahahahaahah not funny!
Harsh sounding I am sure some of you reading may think, but we have debated this topic on many sites and there has been plenty of blogs written about it as well. There is truth in the reality that your breasts are amputated off. There is truth in the reality that it is a death of sorts the loss of your breasts is real. See the truth is not just in all the obvious physical changes but the emotional havoc that your wonderful doctors do not prepare you for. Maybe they have no clue about it. They should wake the hell up and warn people. It has been two years and I have come a long way but the date like any anniversary whether we want it to or not conjures all those damn emotions. And let me state there are a TON of dates to remember.
Some of us cry tears that will not, can not, won't stop the weeks even hours before surgery because of the loss. Some take to singing and dancing trying their best to embrace this amputation because the reality is you have no other choice. I choose the "no crying" rule, to wear attitude shoes to remind me to stand tall with strength. Even though I was scared I was brave because that meant doing what needed to be done regardless of the fear. There is no right or wrong way in my opinion there is only your way.
I hate when people ask "what would you have done different?". Frankly my answer is I wouldn't have gotten cancer! I hated beening shoved into a mastectomy, a lumpectomy or whatever you choose. That part is what pisses me off. I do not do well with being told what to do especially by cancer the fucker! I hate the chooses we are forced to make. I had no choice but to have a mastectomy and drains and all the shit that happened after. But that day was surreal more than any other. The nurses kept saying "your having a breast augmentation" while it was funny the first 5 times it pissed me off after that. I didn't want to have this but shit if I was I was going to laugh while doing it. I blogged to keep everyone updated plus Stupid Dumb Breast Cancer was growing and because it was and is my therapy.
I look at the images that Genevieve said "hey how about if I take pictures" and am still blown away. Mostly because I can't remember them, not just from the drugs and the pain but it was an out of body experience. I know those images have helped me heal but I also know how they have helped others. Seeing someone actually go through this process makes you realize that you can do it no matter how shitty it will be that in the end some how you will be ok. Not to mention she can make a mastectomy look beautiful. No really that sounds weird but I think the reality to my images is that she captures the raw, truth in a beautiful way. Gen has seen breast cancer in a way that none of my friends have and I will never be able to thank her enough for helping me heal this way. I do not think she understands fully the impact of these images on the masses, I hope someday she understands just what these pictures that we had no idea what the hell we were going to do with have done for so many.
So, here I am two years later and still in the thick of it. Next surgery September 12, it really is never over. I remember in my first blog post and in talking to friends the naïve me said "I just want this mastectomy so I can be done with it" what I joke! I had no clue that between the doctors, the PT, the scans, the blood work, lymphedema and all the other crap it is a life long commitment. I get that there are other health issues that people suffer from and I know they can relate to a lot of what I blog about but those with health stuff that they can change with diet and exercise make me nuts. Like crazy nuts!! I was violently thrown into this life and the past 2 years have taught me a rough lesson, one I am still learning from. I am becoming a professional surgery princess, is there a crown for that?
While I will not be celebrating my mastectomy date today I will be around my loud crazy family for Sunday dinner. Jokes will be cracked, comments made and wise ass remarks all over spaghetti and chicken parm all with a little sadness in the back of our minds. Cancer effects the whole family and they all felt it. That day 2 years ago I laid on a gurney, was wheeled down the hall in stilettos while they sat and worried I got the easy part for a few hours. They were scared and even came out changed a little too I think. But they were right there when I awoke from recovery, hey someone has to clap as the princess goes by!