Let me fast forward a little get up to speed. I've been diagnosed, interviewed to candidates, joined a support group, informed my friends and family of my diagnosis. Whew, a lot has happened between January and February of 2015.
It's now early March and I'm faced with the first of four surgeries I would have in 2015. In the overall scheme of things, the first surgery - a lumpectomy really did not take too much of a toll on my body. For those who don't know:
noun: lumpectomy; plural noun: lumpectomies
a surgical operation in which a lump is removed from the breast, typically when cancer is present but has not spread.
In addition, during my lumpectomy I had two lymph nodes removed. Which is called:
Sentinel node biopsy is a surgical procedure used to determine if cancer has spread beyond a primary tumor into your lymphatic system.
I had survived that initial procedure and was awaiting my results. My breast looked pretty much the same with a very small scar just under crease (you really had to look hard to see it). There was some discomfort from the lymph nodes removed in my armpit, but more importantly I was in a waiting game.
Now this waiting game was not something I would wish one anyone. Waiting to know, get that call from your breast surgeon, on what your chances were going to be to survive. Yeah, I know it sounds ugly, but I can't put it any other way. My breast surgeon had not even given me a real stage, prior to surgery, but hinted that it could possibly be a stage 1.
During this time I took off from work to recover, and adopted a new best friend. That's right, in the middle of a crisis I became really good friends with Hennessy. Now I was never a really heavy drinker, and during my twenties I really didn't like the smell or taste of liquor. I was more of a soda, tea and juice kind of gal.
Well, the run up to the first surgery, subsequent waiting game and preparation for chemotherapy, had pushed me straight into the party zone. Oh yes, and luckily for me I had a crew around with a plethora of birthdays, sweaty Friday night dance sessions, big name concerts, side splitting comedy shows and late night dinner runs to keep me busy until the bell tolled.
I cringe and shake my head with amazement at recalling just a couple of days after surgery, I triumphantly snuck up on my crew, during one of the Friday night, birthday jam sessions. Set in a casual down to earth spot in the South Bronx, this joint was our go to spot on a regular, with familiar faces, a good DJ, cheap drinks and people willing to get their unadulterated boogie on. It was a hood place where we could go, run into friends and have a overall ignorant time. Drinks flowing, people hugging. Friends blocking (gotta keep the stalkers at bay) and feet stomping, we carried the fuck on and showed out! My crew partied so hard that night, that I was hoarse, from all the laughing. No doubt I get such joy looking at the video, from that night, which was one of many amazing evening spent with people I love. I can still here my crews squeals of laughter as I rolled in the door and snuck up on them like winter! Yeah, I know it was risky (partying just days into recovery) and it's not something I'd recommended, but hey, I was stressed, and sitting at home waiting by the phone did not appeal to me. My best friend urged me to chill and take a seat, but I eventually got a subdued boogie on! It was by my analysis only the right thing to do! The night ended with greasy food, and laughs and trying to address the oncoming party hangover at Popeye's chicken across the way. This pattern continued on for several weeks, leading up to chemo. Thank god for my people. They are and will remain truly committed to understanding the need for a true distraction.
Up Next: Fighting and finally excepting chemotherapy