My Family Doctor wanted to see us. Not just me, but my husband too. US. Shit. This can't be good. Looking back at it now I was terrified, but I didn't let on. I was busy pulling myself together, so I could handle the worst. I was a dozen steps ahead of this possible awful outcome. In my mind I was already digging into the strength I may need.
She cried and said it is Breast Cancer. She wished it wasn't. My husband pondered quietly. I thought to myself, ok well, I guess this is what I am "doing" right now. Compassion towards me started immediately. My doctor hugged me and we both said it was going to be alright. In all honesty, we had no clue how this was going to end, but the badge of bravery was quietly placed on my chest. February 23, 2017 was my "cancer day". We call it that because it was the day that changed our lives forever.
As we left the Medical Centre, I told my husband "no matter what happens, we need to make this as positive as possible for the kids. I want them to see how strong I can be. I want them to see that whatever the outcome, our family can get through this." Stoically, he agreed.
The next few hours were a blur. We spread the word.
I popped over to my monthly Book Club meeting, because Cancer was not going to change me! (or so I thought) My friends were absolute pillars of support and I latched on to them and their amazing caring.
I arrived home late and woke the kids even though I don't think they were really sleeping. My husband had briefed them an hour or two earlier. I reassured both kids. My young teens needed to know that Mom was ok. I told them "I got this. I am super strong and always have been. This will be hard, but we will get through it". With big hugs and kisses, I hoped they could now sleep.
Now enter a few moments to myself. All I could do was curse and cry. I knew this disease, it took my Grandmother's life over 25 years ago. It crept in again 5 years ago, out of the blue when my Mom had her routine mammogram. As my siblings and I became our Mom's medical advocates, I learned the nitty gritty stats, the horrors of chemo, the pain, the burns, the fatigue and mental anguish this disease brings with it. Sadly, these women had prepared me. I began to talk myself through things. I knew this disease and knowing it well, can prepare me for whatever comes next. My Mom got through it, so will I. So, like a Carrie Underwood, fight for my life kinda song, I dusted myself off and put on a brave face. Tomorrow is a new day, a new day that will be the beginning of a fight for my life, a new journey.