What's the 411?
Let me rewind this shit for a hot second.
Many people have asked me how my cancer was detected. How did I even know to go to the doctor?
In reality, most breast cancers diagnosed under 40 tend to be more aggressive because they go undetected for so long.
Because Mammograms typically aren't performed on women under 40.
Cool story, slick. But why?
A women's breast tissue is very dense when they are younger so it is tougher to detect.
I can't pinpoint exactly when I found my lump. I believe it was in January when Steve and I were in Iceland.
If I had to guess, we had room beers after a long day of driving. I took a shower, and was doing the classic thing ALL girls do where you decide to contort your breasts around to see what they would look like if they were a smidge...perkier? 😃
I was absolutely doing that, when I noticed a lump that I had not noticed before underneath my left breast. It didn't feel hard, but definitely solid at the same time. It didn't hurt, and it moved a little bit.
Hmm... that was definitely not there before.
As some of you may know by now, I am a very hyper aware person when it comes to anything health related-- (#anxiety) so I immediately filed this lump under "Shit I need to get checked out immediately."
That is what I did. I got home and monitored it for about a week or two. It was definitely still there, so I decided to make an appointment with my OB.
When I visited her, she did the classic rehearsed speech of " you are so young, it is probably nothing." She did, however order a Mammogram and Ultrasound for me just to be safe. Bless her. Some OB's won't do this, and will pull the "wait and see" shit on you. That's not ok. I need you ladies to find your inner Cardi B and find that inner boss and not accept "wait and see." You know your body.
The next week I went in to a radiology lab to get my Mammogram and Ultrasound.
I clearly never had a Mammogram before, so wasn't sure what to expect.
Many people have told me it hurts. It didn't really hurt me. It felt like a bad date, is all.
LOL, ok. It felt like someone was squeezing your breast trying to be cute. When really, it does nothing for you. Get it?
Afterward, I asked my tech if she needed a cigarette. She must hear that all of the time, because she ignored me.
Next up was the ultrasound. I was more familiar with this, and how it might go. The tech never looks at you. Meanwhile, I am studying every single facial expression to see if they look pleased or traumatized. My tech had a serious poker face.
She told me to wait as she wanted to call the Radiologist. That sounded fishy to me, but she explained it was standard protocol.
The Radiologist then wanted to speak to me. He was on the phone at another site. All I remember from that phone call is me saying, "should I be worried about this?" He said, "I don't know."
And just like that I was scheduled for a Biopsy. Y'all know how it goes down from there.
Key takeaways here: CHECK YOUR BREASTS. Don't know how? You can just feel yourself up, like I was ... or you can be more clinical about it, and do a self exam like this one: http://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/breast-self-exam