(Sorry, Dad, if this is too much information.)
A few weeks ago I received an invitation, disguised as it was, to come back to the breast imaging center for additional views of my breasts. No reassurance that it was just unclear pictures or not a wide enough view from my mammogram the week before. Just come.
It’s an inconvenient invitation, one I would rather have not received. I don’t think I’m afraid, not anxious. Perhaps annoyed. It will probably turn out to be nothing. This isn’t the first time I’ve had breast issues. In the late nineties I had a lump biopsied, It turned out benign. Then in 2003 and again a couple years later at a checkup my doctor found a lump and insisted I get it checked right away. Nothing serious. Just cysts. Then in October 2013 I found a lump just two months after my mammogram. Another cyst. So this isn’t the first suspicious thing I’ve dealt with.
But in the back of my mind is that tiny whisper. If there is something wrong, how can I care about convenience? How can I be annoyed by scheduling a procedure meant to protect, something that can save a life?
This is the first time I’ve ever really wondered if it might be serious. Maybe because my new friend in writing class beat breast cancer. Maybe because another writing buddy showed me photos of her follicular lymphoma today. Maybe because my parents’ friend just died. Maybe because the novel I’m reading revolves around a woman dying from metastasized breast cancer. I’m not sure.
With all the other suspicions involving my breasts, there was something tangible, something palpable. So maybe this is on my mind more because this time it isn’t tangible. It’s not something I found or my doctor found during an exam. It isn’t something I can feel. It might not even be a something.
Two weeks have passed. I had my appointment, an hour of taking and retaking pictures because the technician needed to change the filter to “see” through my dense breast tissue. Then on to the ultrasound, first with the nurse, and then the doctor.
Another cyst. No cause for worry.
I am thankful I am healthy, that I don’t have to wonder “what if?” But this experience brings to mind so many hurting people, people who I don’t always remember to pray for as I live my comfortable life. I am thankful to be shaken from my day to day existence and be reminded, no matter my circumstance, how blessed I am.