A Beautiful Journey
There are often times in one’s life that warrant the phrase, SERIOUSLY? This friends is one of them. For those just joining me, I’ll update you really quickly….
I am a cancer survivor, still going through reconstruction and feel hemmed, pricked, pulled and put back together again. I do not wish to tell you “how it is”, yet simply share my experience so that, if you wish, you can draw on some positive light and love from where I have been and where I am going.
I walked into Dr. F’s office for my normal monthly check up…. She grabbed my breasts and said– “They look great! Just like breasts.” Yes, being fondled by the doc is a regular occurrence and not sure if there is an inch of my body that has not been seen or touched by someone. If I stop to think about it too long– it becomes creepy and irritating. Not to make too light of the subject, this is just a sarcastic way of describing that this whole process is getting pretty old. My reply to Dr. F was this, “Well, I am ready for another fat grafting.” Sort of choking down the words, but they fell out because summer was coming and I wanted a little more meat on the shelf for my swim suit.
“Really” she came back with— Ok. When do you want to do this?
“Well.. Soon, we are going on vacation and I have an educational tour to do in June.”
So the dialogue continued and a date was chosen…. I waited until my daughter turned 18 so I could celebrate with her, then go incognito like the following Friday. It worked, but incognito my HECK! Here is the deal, to “fat graft” you must have fat SUCKED from your body and IMPLANTED back into your body with an embalming machine. Yes— it is NOT fancy and why people actually do liposuction on PURPOSE is beyond me. But they do, and it hurts and it is just the process for natural augmentation. Implants were not an option for me because of scarring and I chose not to put the synthetic stuff in me that could fail, move or need to be filled up again in 20-years. So, the way I looked at it, I have an ample supply of fat in my inner thigh, which the doctor happily grabbed when she said, “Here is a nice breast!!! This is the good stuff!” Oh so authentic and real! But, it is what it is. This body needed some breast-age, and she had the tools to get it done, so me and the tights parted ways for just a moment. We adjusted their location and voila— fuller breasts. Not cupcake breasts like I wished for— but the full, soft tissue I had once had before my reduction in 2013, which lead to a full mastectomy in June 2014.
The deed was done, but ONE nipple has been giving me trouble. It leaks and bleeds all of the time. After two weeks of this, I decide it’s time to go see Dr. H, who immediately says, “This is not good, but let’s try this creme, see me in a week and we’ll go from there” in his rich accent. Ummm, OK! I knew what was coming…. I had asked for these nipples to be removed when I had the mastectomy, but they opted to keep them, as the dye showed no threat of cancer. So a week goes by and the symptoms do not really go away, but lessen.
Biopsy…. yes, you would hope they would find your twin’s teeth or hair when they go in, but when I say that “little slice” it looked weak and broken to me… I knew it was Paget’s Disease. Only 4% of Ductal Carcinoma patients are diagnosed with this, of COURSE this body would choose to follow the path less taken. Indeed, a pagetoid carcinoma in the nipple of the left breast. A week before our 18-year old graduated and we left for my educational tour in Europe, I went in to have the left nipple removed and recover once again. Seriously! It is true. It happened and that is the way it goes.
The doctors asked if I was “ok”. Dr. H was amazing and I thought to myself, I should have just used black salve to remove the darn stuff myself— BUT, you never know if “you’re the one”. I told everyone I could what was going on, it is my lucky charm. When I speak, the worst never comes true. When I keep a secret— it is never good. Test results came in– -Not invasive. WA HOO! I just have a breast that is divided, but hey— it is still there and can be repaired. At the end of the day it does not matter anyway. I love my body– she has her own journey she is figuring out and I will love and support her 100%, we are sort of stuck together you know. The soul lives on, forever beautiful and never dies, but the body will fade. For me, I have chosen to allow my body to have her journey and love her. I do things that will gain her trust and show her that I can be trusted.
There you are… Raw as raw can be. I hope someone finds this helpful as you navigate the course of what you are doing:) It really is a beautiful journey if we allow it to be.