Saturday, December 5, 2009

Yes Ma'am-o-gram, you are falling apart

Ahhhhh, the joy of being 40- the annual mammogram. No need to blog about how brutally uncomfortable it is to put your boobs in a vice, that my friends is a given. I will however, blog about the general panic that ensues before, during and after your baseline test.

Of course, the technician says, someone will call you if they find any irregularities, otherwise, you will get a card in the mail, and then we will see you again next year. You get dressed, leave, go home and pray to G-d that they do not call you. This is exactly what I did three days ago.

When my i-phone rang and the caller ID said BLOCKED, I falsely assumed it was either a bill collector or a prank caller. I do not usually answer BLOCKED callers but with all the overseas calls and general medical chaos I decided to pick up. Imagine the horror when the nurse identified herself and said, "We need to schedule you for a more comprehensive diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound with a radiologist." Awwww shit, really? She went on to say, "There are a couple of nodules that are irregular and suspicious, so I made an appointment for you at the imaging center, can you be there at 8:15 a.m. next Wednesday? I agreed to take that date and time. I hung up in disbelief. Blocked Call? The Caller Id should have said, BEWARE OF CALLER.

After a few minutes I realized that next Wednesday is the day after CJ is scheduled to have his tonsils and adenoids removed. It is also one day after I turn 41 years old. Happy Birthday Helene, strip from the waist up, now let us place your breasts on this cold marble slab, squeeze them under this vice until you can't breathe, hold your breath, and relax. Really? Really? Is this some kind of joke?

Then after I fessed up to Jeff and cleared my calendar for yet another day or two or three of medical appointments, I went on line. I played a little game of doctor internet. I searched all the factors and read as much as I could about anything and everything to do with the following words:

Post breast reduction mammogram
irregular breast nodules
baseline mammogram
diagnostic mammogram with ultrasound

After reading enough to freak myself out, I closed all the browsers and called the Cleveland Clinic Breast Center. I decided with nodule being a nicer, less scary word for LUMP, I would not mess around. I am begging and pleading to get worked in on Monday or Tuesday of next week when we are already there for CJ anyhow. One 155 mile drive, two birds with one stone.

So it seems like I am falling apart at the ripe age 40 years and 361 days. Let me be candid--- I am now minus a uterus, seeing with defective, crappy, cone shaped corneas and now I am toting around some nodules in my breasts. It is a damn good thing I have rock hard abs, I have not gone grey, that I am using the Obagi skin care system, otherwise, YES Ma'am, I would LOOK 40. It is one thing to feel or act 40 but no one wants to look 40. No One.

So if you are the praying kind, or if you have a red line phone direct to Hashem like Mrs. Pool, by all means, add me and CJ to your prayer list. We can use all the help we can get. Yes Ma'am!


Charlie said...

I know a few people that have been re-called after a mammogram and all has been absolutely fine. Mostly it seems there are problems with getting the right image. Scary though I'm sure. Will be keeping my fingers crossed for you, but sure you'll be fine.

Lori said...

Was this your first mammogram? My doctor told me it was VERY common to be called back for another look after the baseline mammogram. They have nothing to compare it to so don't know what your normal is. It is scary but don't panic yet.

Lynn Nichols said...

I had my first Mamogram a couple weeks ago and this very same thing happened to me! I wasn't scared since my tech lady warned me how common this is. I went back for a second mamogram & a ultrasound. I just had some harmless cyst's that are very common. So please don't be alarmed!! It's just part of the fun of being 40!

Jennifer said...

Praying, Helene...for the both of you. Just turned 40 myself! :-)
Jennifer(fellow triplet mom)

Ellen Mrukowski said...

Sending good vibes your way and saying prayers for both you and CJ. Meredith had a t&a almost 2 years ago and things were so much better for her after! Are they keeping him overnight? Hope your mammogram is just fine, sorry you have to be in wait-and-see stress mode! xoxo

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