Thursday, June 03, 2010

That Sinking Feeling

I know that I said yesterday that I was going to blog about Trust. But I need to put that on hold for a while because I have something else I want to share with you.

A week ago, during a routine medical check up, my doctor said that she felt a lump in my left breast. I've had numerous breast exams done over the years but I never bothered to do any myself. But when she said "You should get a scan done. There's a lump here." And she put my fingers on the side of my left breast and pushed them hard into my flesh. I did feel something.

But it felt like muscle. Is THIS what a lump is supposed to feel like??? I always thought it was supposed to feel like a frozen pea or something close to that.

The doctor paused, and I waited, anticipating something like - "Oh, just get a scan to be sure, but it's probably nothing to worry about." But she said nothing. Instead, she started writing furiously in my docket/file.

And I was left standing there ... with that sinking feeling.

That evening, I left the office in silent denial. I told no one. People (mom especially) would just worry and panic and make me feel 100x worse. It was a whole lot easier to go about acting normal when everyone else thought I was normal.

My left breast started to hurt too. I wasn't sure if it was because she had pressed so hard into it? Or because I had spent half an hour flapping in the pool with all my clothes on to take underwater pictures with the SONY tx 5? Or because I had cancer?!

Finally, I just managed to get the ultrasound done. I lay there feeling the cool gelled up metal aparatus glide over my skin, it felt like a really long time but in reality was only ten minutes! I could feel my heart thumping rapidly through my chest and I wondered if the doctor could detect this through the ultrasound. I wondered if she pitied me or was silently laughing at my discomfort.

When it was over, she said to come back in 2 hours for the report. 2 Hours?!

"Did it look normal?" I asked her, I was desperate for any sign of positivity. But all she gave me was ,"You have to wait for the report at 4pm."

OMG will this agony never end?!

For the first time in years, I felt like a smoke. Ha! How apt, I'm about to find out if I have breast cancer and I'm craving a cigarette!

It was a difficult 2 hours to pass... alone.

I even bought a magazine to try to get my mind off the matter (and I got a free Versus perfume vial!). As expected, I was done with the magazine in ten minutes. And the rest of the time really crawled by...

At 3.30, I couldn't bear it anymore, and I had gotten so tired from doing nothing but sitting and staring... so I walked back to the xray clinic to check if my report was ready. It was (damn it, lady, you could have rang me!).

The lady at the reception didn't say anything. She just passed me a huge sealed envelope. Don't these people have any EQ?

Last month when I went for my Papsmear, my gynea (different doctor than the one who detected the breast lump last week)... she talked me through everything she was doing, and even reassured me that everything looked fine. Then a week later, when the nurse rang to say I could collect my pap smear results, she told me, "Everything's normal. Just come by to collect the results anytime, dear."

But this breast ultrasound experience made my pap smear (which is supposedly more invasive) feel like a jolly walk in the park!

By the way, I went for the pap smear to check if everything was ok, since I haven't been getting my periods. I still haven't gotten my period, but at least I know physically I am ok. I've put weight back on recently actually, feeling fatter and I've had breakouts/pimples this week!!! (maybe it's stress.. but hopefully, it's hormones!). I'm just waiting for my system to kick start itself again. Doctor said it could take a couple of months after I get my bodyfat above 20%. And even if that doesn't happen, there's a drug that can kickstart the process for me (can't remember the name).

While waiting for my breast ultrasound results though... it made me think- shit.. maybe I'm not getting my periods because I have breast cancer and its wrecking my hormonal balance and it also made me lose weight!

Ok.. back to the point, I opened the envelope, pulled out the report... my eyes scanned the page faster that they've scanned anything before... and then I saw it- Normal Findings.
That was a moment of utter R-E-L-I-E-F-!
The good thing is (but also annoying because it means my last doctor was full of shit), there are no lumps or irregularities at all. Nothing.
So everything is back to normal in my life now... in fact it's better than normal. I'm more appreciative of my life now than ever before. Life is sweet, don't you forget that either.

12 comments:

  1. Hi Holly... glad to hear that your scan was ok. I had a lump removed during a biopsy over 10yrs ago. Fortunately, it was benign (fibroadenoma), but it was still a nervewrecking experience.
    Your gynae sounds like a nice lady. Would you be able to recommend her? I'm looking for a good gynae/clinic to go to.

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  2. So now you'll treat me better? lol kidding. Glad ya fine :) Live happier and dun let things stressed u out. Buy you Nandos one of these days? :)

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  3. Can I know where you did your ultrascan thingy? And what is it called?

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  4. @pl- just drop me an email and i'll pass u relevant details.

    @kuenkeat- How u know i love Nando's?! anyway... no thanks.. afraid u'll turn out to be a nerdy pervert. lol

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  5. @Kiwi- it's called a breast ultrasound. (some ppl call it a scan). I had it done at Medical Imaging.

    They have outlets at Tampines st 11 (which I went to ) and Cairnhill (if it's more convenient for u).

    $100 bucks per scan.

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  6. *sobz* I'm a nerdy pervert!! How come i didn't know!!!!

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  7. celestina2:36 pm

    HJ
    Dun get mad wif yr doc if she has cause tons of anxiety to you. Any abnormalities or foreign body found or felt on our breasts cant be taken lightly by the doc

    I removed a cyst years ago. After which even til now i stil have many on both breasts. Its all hormonal related or in our genes

    The sonographer (the one who did te scan) cant review anyting to patients except the doc : )

    I knw yr anxiety cos i went thru te same thing like u & she took forever to do the scan cos it was just too many on me : ( ANd when she was done & i cant wait to ask if she found any abnormality, she gave me te same reply as yrs gave : s

    I reckon you are not having yr period could be due to your body fats too low. I'm sure u knw when gals are too skinny they tend to miss their period. Same goes for athlete

    We all shld treasure life & take gd care : )

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  8. Anonymous3:24 pm

    sometimes doctors are just full of shit...

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  9. I agree with Celestina... the doctor is just doing her job by flagging out 'possible' abnomality. better have a doc like this, than a doc who keeps quiet and what if it turns out to be really a lump. safe than sorry is better.

    Also, pls just gain weight. Ur not doing any favours to ur health by being too thin to have ur period.

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  10. skinnyger1:18 pm

    i stand at 160cm and weigh only 40 kg.

    way too skinny but it is my genes to be skinny no matter how much i eat. Guess i can NEVER get fatter as from what my friends and relatives told me.DUH!lol!

    i am skinny but my monthly period still come accurate so it's not the skinniess that stop the period. It's the body fats.

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  11. Anonymous3:12 pm

    other possibilities that may contribute to your missed periods/irregular periods are hormonal imbalance caused by benign growth in the uterus, endometriosis, too many follicles in your ovaries, your pituitary glands and thyroid glands also send out signals to secrete hormones - maybe theres something wrong with those glands....
    An ultrasound or MRI can assess the thyroids, the uterus and ovaries. or even a simple blood test can reveal abnormal levels

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  12. Hi :) thanks for the info. but i got my period earlier this week. everything is ok and back in sync now :)

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