When I went to my doctor about a lump I thought I had found, I fully expected him to say it was nothing. Wishful thinking, I suppose.
But to my horror, he said there was something there and it should be checked out. Before I knew what was happening, I was attending the Breast Clinic at Queen Alexander Hospital in Portsmouth where I was subjected to various procedures. I had heard that Mammograms could be very painful, as they squash your boobs flat in the machine, so I was more or less prepared for it.
It was a little uncomfortable, but I was more concerned about how flat they were squashing my boobs!
Next, I had an ultrasound scan, like the ones they do when you are pregnant. When the doctor seemed to be taking forever on the place I felt the lump, I had to ask if it was all right. Quite calmly, he said no, it was not. Then equally calmly, he said he would need to take some tissue samples with a biopsy.
At this point, I wanted to crawl away into the corner of the room, for this was not the scenario in my head. They were supposed to say that everything was fine, that I was wasting everyone’s time.
The taking of the samples didn’t hurt a bit, as my boob was numbed. Pretty much how the rest of me was feeling at that point. I was having a waking nightmare where all my hair was falling out.
In between these tests, I sat in the waiting room, watching an assortment of women cope with the same situation. Some were determined to be brave; some so relaxed and laid back. Sometimes, one would come out of a room, clearly upset. I was fast becoming one of those.
Then it was my turn to see the surgical registrar, a lovely woman with a positive, beaming smile. I sat there, fully expecting the worst possible news. However, it turned out that my lump was considered small. It hadn’t spread to my lymph nodes or anywhere else and would be removed under local anaesthetic in the outpatient clinic, regardless of what kind of lump it turned out to be.
She said I was one of the lucky ones, and that everything would indeed be fine.
I wasn’t totally convinced at this stage, but she sounded so confident, I tried hard to believe her. I won’t be able to relax until I know the results of the tests next week.
See you then!