3.20.2009

The Left Boob Chronicles, Part V

The Boobday Girl

I had called and made a follow-up appointment with the breast surgeon for the week of spring break. It just happened to fall on my birthday -- happy birthday to me! So I scraped my tired (and sick -- I had a terrible cold that had just knocked me on my behind) bones out of bed for a 9:30 a.m. appointment.

My mom went with me again, but waited in the waiting room as I went back. I told the surgeon that I thought the lump had gotten bigger, and after feeling it, she agreed with me. She told me that she wanted to a biopsy, and that since the lump was bigger she could just do a normal (as opposed to surgical) biopsy right there in the office.

As in that day.

Like, right then.

That kind of freaked me out. She explained the procedure very simply and gently: she'd inject Lidocaine into my left breast to numb it, and I'd feel it sting and burn for a bit, and then I'd have no feeling. After that, she'd make a small incision about 1/2 inch under my nipple, through which she'd insert the biopsy stick (for lack of a more scientific term...), get a few samples, and then suture the incision back together. She assured me it wouldn't take more than 5-10 minutes, which would mostly be set-up and clean-up.

I gotta tell y'all, I was pretty nervous. I asked the nurse to get my mom from the waiting room cause I wanted a) to run things by her and b) her hand to hold. She came back, and the surgeon explained everything to her, and we decided to go ahead and do the biopsy. The surgeon reiterated that she still wasn't very worried, but this would really be for peace of mind.

I was in one of those damn paper gowns again, and the nurse had me lie back completely. Let me just tell you, those paper gowns are HARD to keep things covered with since they open in the front! But my mom promised not to look anyway :-)

After a few minutes of set up, the surgeon explained that the biopsy stick (or was it the needle? I can't remember--Mom, do you?) would make a loud popping noise when it went in, sort of like a cap gun going off. Uh, whaaaaa? Sure enough, she tested it out for us, and it made a loud crack. It was weird!

The surgeon got the needled all ready with Lidocaine, and I looked straight at my mom (NOT watching that needle go in, no way!) and squeezed both her hand and the nurse's. It did sting a lot as it went in, and kept stinging as the Lidocaine filled my breast. I just remember begging my mom to talk to me to distract me! Soon, though, I couldn't feel a thing. I didn't look for a few minutes, but then curiosity took over. All I saw was blood on the surgeon's glove, and some gauze with blood on it. Yup, that freaked me out! I looked away quickly and didn't look again.

Just a few minutes later, everything was over. They bandaged me up and sent me on my way! And let me just tell y'all--my boobs are not small, and I can feel them bounce when I walk. To have one numb boob and one un-numb boob was SO WEIRD. I can't explain the feeling...it was just like my left boob wasn't there!

I had a bit of pain and discomfort over the next few days, and my boob turned rather spectacular 47 different shades of blue, green, purple, red, and yellow. It's still pretty bruised up over a 1.5 weeks later--my friends call it the RainbowBoob :-) Definitely an interesting thing to look down and see is a multi-colored boob!

So, the results. I got them back 3 days after the biopsy. My doctor called me personally, and the only time I was really worried was waiting to talk to her. That's when I allowed the anxious thoughts of "what if..." to enter my head--what if it was cancer? Would I have to start chemo immediately? What about DreamSchool? Would I lose my hair?!?!?

To be honest, when I started writing The Left Boob Chronicles, I didn't know the results of the biopsy. I didn't know that everything was okay. In the first 2 posts, I was very cheery and cracking jokes, I think to make up for what little bit of nervousness I was having. But I got the call that everything was okay, that all is well, and I just have a bump of extra-dense breast tissue in my left boob! (EWWWWWWW!!!)

So, thus ends The Left Boob Chronicles. All is well, and the RainbowBoob lives on.

P.S. Comments are FINALLY open. If y'all have any questions about this, ask away, I'd be happy to clear any confusion up. I know my medical-speak is not quite up to par, hah!

5 comments:

Kaitlyn said...

First, I was so glad to hear that you were okay!! Second, I'm proud of you for sharing.

I can't imagine my breast feeling as if it weren't there. Mine are quite large as well, and the mere concept quite freaks me out.

pithydithy said...

Wow, this has been quite the nerve-wracking odyssey, huh? I was so relieved that Part V came with good news!

Monica H said...

As you know my grandma had breast cancer last year. She's been in remission for almost one year (April 1st)!!! So whenever I heard of you possibly having to go through what I saw her go through, freaked me out a bit.

So I'm glad you're okay. I'm glad there's no cancer. I'm glad you still have your booby even if it is looking more like a rainbow htese days. Heck if I had any rainbow cupcakes, I'd send one your way :-)

When my grandma had her biopsy, they did it in office right before she had a lumpectomy. Weird, huh? And she cried because she said it hurt so much. I wonder if the Lidocain didn't quite work for her? She said she could feel the entire thing. Eek!

Anyway, I'm still thanking God you're okay. Love you Nanny girl.

The Nanny said...

Monica, I wonder if she was just referring to the Lidocaine injection? That was pretty darn painful--LOTS of stinging. I couldn't feel the incision being done, but I could feel some pressure around my rib cage when the surgeon was inserting the biopsy stick.

Anonymous said...

I'm very glad that you're ok. I was convinced that you were just going through a long drawn out way of saying you had breast cancer!! Again, very thankful you are ok.