Thursday, April 30, 2009

Three Words I Never Thought I'd Say

I have cancer.

Saying it out loud the first time is the hardest, but it gets easier after that. Six months ago, at my post-partum pap, my obgyn did a breast exam and thought he felt cysts. Since I was nursing at the time, I couldn't have a mammogram so he sent me in for an ultrasound. They did find cysts, but said they were too small for him to have felt. He most likely felt milk ducts. Because they did find regular nothing-to-worry-about cysts, he wanted me to go back in 6 months for a mammogram (or another ultrasound if I was still nursing) to make sure they weren't growing.

I had my first ever mammogram on the 10th.

The mammogram itself wasn't that bad. They did, however, find something. The radiologist said it didn't appear to have any "alarming characteristics," so they thought it was probably another cyst. An ultrasound was scheduled for the following Tuesday to be sure it was just a cyst. After doing the ultrasound, the tech went to show the radiologist (totally normal, they did the same thing the first time). When she came back with the radiologist, I started to worry. He told me they still thought it was a cyst, but it appeared to be a "complex" cyst because it had a thick wall around it. Still nothing to worry about, but the chance of it being malignant went up a bit. He ordered a biopsy just to be on the safe side.

I went back, for a third time in as many weeks, last week for the biopsy. They were still talking cyst, and weren't too concerned about it. I was to come back again Monday for the results, something routine in this office no matter the results. On Monday, they called and told me to come back yesterday instead because they didn't have my results yet.

The constant waiting is the worst! And now they wanted me to wait a couple more days! All of us went back yesterday to hopefully get good news and be done with all of this. It didn't turn out that way.

I have cancer.

This is probably the scariest news I've ever been given about myself. No one ever wants to hear the "C" word. Once we got over the initial shock and fear, however, we discovered it's not a death sentence. I don't have breast cancer; it just happens to be in my breast. I have a very rare form of cancer, and it was caught extremely early.

I met with the surgeon today to discuss my lumpectomy. My type of cancer, dermatofibrosarcoma, is a slow-growing type and will not spread to other parts of my body. It does tend to be difficult to get it all, though, because she said it has little "tendrils" that make it necessary to take out a very wide margin around the lump. If they don't get all of the "tendrils," I'll need radiation because it will come back. Since mine is so small, she's very optimistic she'll get it all and I won't need to go there. She's planning on taking a chunk a good couple inches in diameter out of my boob. Thankfully, I have big boobs, so she was confident it wouldn't affect me too much, cosmetically. Besides the big scar I'll have right in my cleavage.

Dermatofibrosarcoma is so rare it often goes undetected for years before any action is taken. The surgeon said she was very worried for me when she heard what it was because at best, she's had to take a good quarter of boob. At worst, she's had to do a full mastectomy, including removing a good portion of chest muscle. She said my sarcoma was the smallest she's ever seen in her 25 years of being a surgeon! I'm so fortunate my obgyn mistook my milk ducts for cysts! It would've been at least 5 years before my first mammogram otherwise.

Someone from the surgeon's office will be calling me in the morning to schedule my lumpectomy. In the meantime, I have a mole on my boob that will be coming off Tuesday. Yes, same boob (I can't catch a break!). She wants me to go ahead with that, and we'll schedule the surgery for a couple weeks later, after I've healed.

Once the surgery is over, we'll get the pathology results in about a week. She did warn us that because it's so rare, pathology will most likely get a second opinion and it may take longer than a week for the results. That's exactly what happened with my biopsy. If I get the all-clear, I'll be going in for mammograms and ultrasounds every 6 months for 2-3 years. If not, well, we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

I have cancer. But I'll be fine.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cora's Teeth

Both babies have caught Abby's cold, and I'm starting to feel it as well. Cora's still teething on top of being congested and having a very wet cough. Neither baby is letting their illnesses slow them down, though!

See Cora's top teeth! Well, 3 out of the 4 coming in.

I was FINALLY able to get some happy Cora pictures! Usually, she gets very serious as soon as she sees the camera.


Monday, April 27, 2009

Life Just Got More Interesting

Both babies are now mobile! Cora still doesn't lift her torso up to crawl in the conventional way, but she's been crawling her own way for a long time now. Emma used to be so content to sit and have toys handed to her, but she recently decided that wasn't good enough anymore. She would get so frustrated, though, because she could only go backwards or roll around and it wouldn't get her where she wanted to go. It's hard watching your sister crawl circles around you and get the toy you wanted! Now, she's finally figured out how to schooch forward! She doesn't get all around the room like Cora yet, but it's coming. She could only go about a foot or two before it's time to take a break. Something seems to have clicked this morning because she's finally getting some speed and distance! Once she figures out how to move her legs with the rest of her body we're going to be in big trouble.

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Cute First

I put everyone down for a nap a half hour ago, but I've been listening to the babies babble ever since. I just went in to check on them, and they were both on their stomachs facing each other and talking to each other! Cutest. Thing. Ever.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

First Cookie

We're really enjoying giving the babies bits of "real" food now. Yesterday, we wentto my favorite Mexican place where they tried rice, beans, and guacamole. All three were big hits! Cora especially like the guacamole! She woke up from their last nap first today, so I brought her down and gave her a teething cookie for the first time.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

So Behind

Warning! Very picture-heavy post. I keep waiting to upload pictures to flickr until I get time to edit them, but I've gotten a month behind! I ended up just posting all my March pictures straight out of the camera. There are FIVE pages of new pictures, so go see! Some of my favorites:






Both together!

Both babies together


Playing in Cora's Crib

Abby on her bike

Telling a car two streets over to STOP!

Damon's parents came to visit a few weeks ago.
Grandma Rita and Cora

Grandpa Jake and Emma

The girls first time sitting in restaurant high chairs. A month ago.
Emma eating a piece of breadstick

Cora's 1st time in a restaurant high chair

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Joys of Twindom

For now, they don't mind sharing their toys. Even if it means creating a new way to play. Emma was in the Exersaucer when Cora decided to climb in. I managed to shoot a couple pictures before Emma started started bouncing in her seat.


The Joys of Twindom