Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Unthinkable

There is something wrong with my breast.

For several months a dense mass has been developing. At first I thought it must be related to breastfeeding, some kind of mastitis. During the summer Natalie started refusing the affected breast, so for the last several months I only fed her on one side. I thought this odd but wasn't particularly alarmed since I know some babies do this for no reason at all.

In September I went for an Ultrasound. They could not do a mammogram because I was still nursing and the milk makes it unclear. The tech said she really couldn't see anything but could definitely feel the mass so I should come back for a mammogram when I was finished nursing.

I began to wean Natalie shortly after this, in anticipation of a mammogram. It was a little earlier than I would have liked, but I felt that I should not let this situation continue unchecked.

I went for my mammogram last week. It showed "architechtural abormalities", skin thickening and calcification, none of which are good to have, but no specific mass, so the radiologist ordered an MRI and a biopsy. The MRI confirmed and pinpointed areas of suspicion.

I have just returned from the biopsy and am now waiting until Friday when there should be a preliminary report on the pathology of the samples they extracted today.

No one seems to know exactly what this might be. It is suspicious, but not a clear-cut cancer. On a scale of 1-5, 1 being clearly benign and 5 being clearly cancer, the radiologist rated my "spots" a 4. She also said that if it is cancer, it is an agressive one given how fast things are changing. Not something you want to hear.

On a more positive note, she mentioned a rare, benign condition called "granulomatous mastitis" which seems to fit my symptoms nearly exactly. It shows up in women generally within 18 months of a pregnancy. It is still not a good thing as it requires major surgical intervention, but at least it is not cancer. I am in the strange position of hoping that this is what I have.

I write this today asking for your prayers for a positive outcome to all of this. I think that whatever the outcome, I have a bit of a journey ahead of me and I am greatly comforted by my friends and family, even those of you who read this blog and have never met me personally.

I am grateful most of all for my faith, which remains strong and gives me peace. I am certain God is firmly in charge of this situation and will not give me more than I can handle.

I will post the outcome when I receive it, hopefully Friday. In the meantime, please think positively for me!


antonia said...


Michelle said...

Praying here too.

nicole said...

Definitely praying for you and your family.

Bianca said...

We will say special prayers for you tonight and you have been in my prayers since hearing this news. Whatever the outcome I pray you find peace in the enveloping arms of Christ and our Blessed Mother and I know you are of such strong spirit and faith that you will see this through.

Praying for the best for you and your family!!!

Loretta said...

I've been praying for you all day. I've been in a lot of pain recently with all the health probs I'm having, and today I offered my pain up to our Lord in your name for your healing. Know you are loved and in my thoughts and prayers. Talk to you soon and STAY STRONG!

The Purnells said...

You got it. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

Miriam said...

I know we're an hour away and you have an amazing support network there, but if there is anything ANYTHING Schey and I can do please call us any time!