Later today, the doctor will be cutting out a piece of my breast. 3 cm, more or less. The size of a kiwi or a Roma tomato.
Maybe smaller if all the prayers have worked….
I just finished my “antibacterial” shower, the second in less than 12 hours (doctors orders) and applied the Lidocaine patch. The patch needs to be in place 6 hours before the lymphatic mapping procedure at 11:00, where they will inject me with a blue contrast material and after which I might have a little after glow going on that might make me look gray around the gills.
The nurse told my husband not to worry…I might look like I’m not breathing, but it’s just the dye. Awesome. It will go great with the gray hoodie I’m wearing.
*sigh* It will be a long day at the medical center. I have to be there at 8:30 for the needle localization…a procedure where they insert “needles” into my breast as markers for the surgeon. This will give her the tumor coordinates, so to speak. Surgery is scheduled for 1:30 and I’m thrilled that they keep telling me I will be ready to go home at about 4:00.
As I washed myself a few minutes ago, touching my breast with healing and compassion for what is to come, I couldn’t help but wonder. Wonder at this companion I’ve carried with me for 58 years, from tiny bud to full ripe fruit….through the nursing of two babies and sensual delights of an unmentionable number iof lovers. I’ve loved my breasts and hated them, only to come around full circle to love once again once I realized that they were in jeopardy. That I was in jeopardy.
And I couldn’t help but wonder how the surgery will effect the way my breast will look and feel….what angle the scar will take and whether or not the change will be obvious to others. It will definitely be smaller but my doc has assured me that she will make the shape as “nice” as possible. Having a female surgeon, and an excellent one, gives me great confidence. She gets it, in a way no man ever could.
Naturally, prayers have been going forth that the cancer be obliterated…the tumor shrunken like a dark brown raisin under a white hot sun….leaving a fresh healthy margin in its place. I’ve been praying that my nodes are clear, and that the surgery itself will be quick and brilliantly successful.
But now…in the early dawn hours as I lie here, cleansed and waiting, I want to thank my breast. To honor her journey thus far, and to pay homage. It….I….will not be the same after today. But I vow to love myself, scars and all, into health and wholeness, with a holy gratitude for the gifts my breast – my entire body – has given to me.
The precious and fragile and resilient and mysterious earthen vessel that houses my soul and makes this journey through physical life possible, I Thank you. I Bless you. I Love you.