You may ask yourself, Where does that highway go to?

12 07 2020

So I have cancer.

Stage 1A breast cancer, to be treated with surgery and radiation, possibly chemo, and long-term hormone treatment. Prognosis is good.

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I was years overdue for my first mammogram, when I finally followed through on one of the many scrips my doctor urged on me and scheduled one for early June.

They did the mammo and a breast ultrasound, and sent me on my way. Less than a week later, I got a call: Hey, there was an issue with one side, could you come back for another round?

It’s probably nothing, they said.

So, second mammogram/ultrasound in my life, less than a week after my first one. Then another call: Yeah, we found something, we’d like to biopsy it, just to be sure.

It’s probably nothing, they said.

Biopsy, then. The radiologist was very nice, told me everything that she was doing, said, you guess it, It’s probably nothing.

Four days after that: It’s something.

The first days after the diagnosis, I was simply annoyed. What the hell, I griped to friends, like 2020 hasn’t been bad enough. Then I was angry, because anger is What I Do—and that was useful, because I had follow-up appointments and arrangements to be made and anger gave me the energy to do what, as I griped yet again, was basically a job.

Cancer is a job.

But now, now I’m in the lull before the surgery. I have one appointment at the end of this week, a covid test next week, and then two days after that, surgery.

Anger doesn’t work so well for lulls, for waiting. It worked when I thought that cancer was something I’d have to fit into my life, but not for the reality that my life is something I’ll have to rearrange around the cancer—for the next few months, at least, likely longer.

I’m not afraid that this will kill me. It might, but it’s been caught early, and if it does kill me, it likely won’t be anytime soon.

No, I am unsettled by what I do know—that I am in for a hard time—and uncertain about the rest.

This is my life now, my life with cancer, and I’ll have to figure out how to live it.