having been a dental assistant in America i am all too aware of the benefits of preventive medicine when it comes to the body. this truth is especially important when it comes to breast cancer.
growing up, i had often heard my mother give minor details of her mother’s battle with breast cancer as well as the warnings that we should be sure to do self examinations and have regular mammograms.
last week, i received the call that i was due for my yearly check up. most often women are advised at my age to have a mammogram done every two years. i have them yearly…because i am a breast cancer survivor/thrivor.
in 2002, I knew something was not right so i scheduled a visit with the professionals. i was used to cysts occurring and requiring attention so i didn’t give it a lot of thought.
i returned to hear the test results and was given the all clear. this was great news but didn’t answer this “knowing” in my heart that something was not right with my body. nonetheless, i accepted that i was given the all clear and dismissed the other.
a week later, while still at work, my phone rang and it was my doctor on the other end of the phone. he was not known to ring me directly so this was odd to me.
he insisted I leave work and get to his office immediately. i rang my BFF and she agreed to go with me for support.
when he walked in the exam room it was obvious that he did not have good news…and he didn’t. he used the “C” word…and i was stunned. for whatever reason, what they had thought was a clear mammogram, was not and i had what appeared to be cancerous cell in my milk glands.
tests and biopsies followed and all confirmed my worst fear.
it had never been a fear for me before that time but the prospect of the worst case scenario (for me leaving my children behind) brought fear to my heart.
there was a whirlwind of activity, advice and prescribed treatment. i followed everything the doctors asked of me.
doing all i knew to do physically made sense to me.
my heart was troubled though. for that, i must tell you i clung to my faith and everything I had been taught about faith from growing up in a minister’s family.
i needed what I had been told to be real.
my soul (remember we are body, soul and spirit) needed to know that the spirit side of me contained some sort of strength and real connection with its maker.
in the quietness and depth of my heart, i felt this advice:
1. prayer changes things. it also calms the soul when it wants to freak out.
2. gather and follow all the wisdom i could.