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Published by pam on Fri, 03/09/2012 - 3:49am


I think I've got it all under control.  Until two days before the surgery, I look like a rock.  Then everything falls apart.  I panic.


It all depends on your perspective...

Published by Marc on Thu, 03/08/2012 - 9:09pm

Waiting in the hospital the other day, I was thinking about how much I dislike hospitals. They're full of sick people. And then Ryann said, "Aren't hospitals great? They're full of doctors!"
I think keeping a good perspective on this whole process is going to be VERY important.

Hunkering down

Published by pam on Wed, 03/07/2012 - 4:15pm

Friends are amazing.  I need to cook.  I need to put some food in the freezerso we'll be ready for the aftermath of surgery.  We don't have a kitchen.  CID I mention that?  We are remodeling our kitchen.  There is dust everywhere.  It's hard to cook.  There is detritus on every open surface.  Clutter grows into every empty space like moss.  But I need food, so my older daughter and I pack up our stuff and go to cook at a friend's house.   We make two lasagnas, two pans of macaroni and cheese, and a vat of high mineral vegetable broth to be used in soups.

Searching for rats

Published by pam on Tue, 03/06/2012 - 7:18pm

Once they discover a rat in one part of your body, it is important to make sure there aren't more.  I have a tumor in my breast.  That much we know for sure.  Now I get to find out what might be lurking elsewhere.  Lung cancer?  A brain tumor?  Is that tailbone bruise something more?  What about those uterine fibroids?  Or that pain around my left ovary?  


Telling the kids

Published by pam on Mon, 03/05/2012 - 1:50pm


How do you tell the two people who depend on you the most, the people who rely on you to keep them safe, that this time, there is a monster in the closet?  Yes Virginia, you should be terrified because that shadow isn't just a shadow, it is a beast waiting to eat your mother.  One wrong step and she 'll be gone.  Now, it's not really that bad, but to a child, I have no doubt, it will sound like a nightmare.



Published by pam on Fri, 03/02/2012 - 7:53pm


How odd it is to have a secret.  Marc and I come together with a group of friends as we have so many times before.  But this time it is different.  We listen and talk and ask questions as we have before, but this time there is a lot we do not say.  We recognize this time as a swell before the storm.  We ride the wave.  Conversations come easily, but they seem trivial.  Questions come naturally, but we do not share.   We proceed as if looking down on ourselves and others from a different place.  We are not connected or invested.  


Surgeons are awesome

Published by pam on Wed, 02/29/2012 - 6:25pm


If radiologists are sirens beckoning their patients towards a dangerous shore, surgeons are saviors - eagles that soar from the sky to whisk the newly diagnosed away from danger.  They see patients after the diagnosis but before the toxins take their toll.  They deliver good news.  Tumors suddenly seem tidy, removable, survivable. For the first time in a week, I think I can beat thing.  Breasts or no breasts, hair or no hair, maybe I can beat this thing.  


A nice time

Published by Marc on Wed, 02/29/2012 - 5:35pm

The time we have right now, after surgery and before chemo, is actually a kind of sweet time for Pam and I. We're talking about a lot of really deep emotions, thoughts, hopes,  and fears. Reminds me a bit of our early dates 23 years ago. How nice...

Biopsy results

Published by pam on Wed, 02/29/2012 - 3:53pm


The radiologist reads out the details as if it's a grocery list.  8 of 9 on the Nottingham scale.  Infiltrating ductal carcinoma.  One positive node.  It's aggressive just like she thought.  She talks in a language I struggle to understand.  I ask her for the details so my father the pathologist can decipher them for me.  


My father.  


I'm going to have to tell my father.  He's going to have to go through all of this again.  The chemo, the fear, the chill of death watching nearby.  My somach sinks for him.  Almost more then it does for me.  


Published by pam on Wed, 02/29/2012 - 3:30pm


Time is defined by what happens in it.  I've never doubted that.  And I don't think it's a figurative statement.  I believe that time is a construct of the mind, like sound.


Waiting for the results of the biopsy will take two days.  Two really long days.  And althouth the days may be painful in length, they are also the last two days of my before life.  Once the results come in, everything changes.  It will be after.