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I Can’t Believe I Need an Oncologist!

Three days after my diagnostic mammogram, Dear Hubby and I met with Surgeon #1 for preliminary discussion about the results. With a serious expression on his face, the surgeon rated my newly discovered mass a 5 on the “suspicious scale” of 1-5. This rating was due to the lump’s size and my family history.

My initial oncology appointment was therefore made that very day, even before my biopsy was scheduled.

There seemed to be a real sense of urgency. Perhaps doctors have some kind of intuition about these things, although of course, Surgeon #1 emphasized the oncology appointment could easily be canceled if it was found to be unnecessary should my biopsy result turn out to be negative.

Somehow, I knew right then and there we would not be canceling it. Women have intuition too.

Of course, my biopsy did reveal cancer and we had to keep that oncology appointment.

Things were on a roll. I had entered the “cancer treatment tunnel” literally walking around in a daze as I began the process of trying to soak up volumes of information and trying to compile lists of questions.

When I walked through the doors of my oncologist’s office merely days after that meeting with Surgeon #1, all I could think was, shit – I can’t believe I need an oncologist. For ME. That would mean I have cancer. You do have cancer, I had to tell myself over and over again.

I couldn’t quite fathom this new reality. I guess I was still a bit in denial.

As I studied my oncologist’s neatly framed certificates on the wall and looked around the room while sitting there fidgeting under the buzzing florescent lights, I had the uncanny feeling of deja vu.

Not that long ago, I had been sitting in a similarly appointed oncology exam room discussing my mother’s cancer with her oncologist.

How could this be happening to me already?

Many things were discussed that day, but the main decision agreed upon by all was the need for me to be immediately tested for the BRCA 2 gene mutation. Since we now knew my mother had been a carrier of this mutation, I had a 50-50 chance of having it as well.

The result of this test would determine my immediate future.

A positive result would mean a bilateral mastectomy unless I truly wanted to tempt fate. On the other hand, a negative result would mean being treated like the general population of women with a lump of similar size and a lumpectomy would be a possibility.

Suddenly, I sure wanted to be a woman of the general population sort.  

The genetic test result would take about two weeks to come back. We had two weeks to contemplate and prepare ourselves for whatever the future held.

Suddenly a great deal was riding on a simple blood test.

Next, we needed a consultation with Surgeon #2 who would be performing the procedure; we just didn’t know which procedure it would be yet.

In addition, we also now needed to speak with a plastic surgeon just to be prepared, of course, for the possibility of the mastectomy scenario coming true. I never envisioned myself needing a plastic surgeon, but then I never envisioned myself with breast cancer either.

Dear Hubby kept telling me we needed to wait for the test results and see what happened, but somehow I already knew what the results would be.

Again, women have intuition too.

Even now, I still can’t believe I need an oncologist. In fact, I likely always will.

Have you ever had intuition about a test result that turned out to be accurate?

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I can't believe I need an #oncologist! #breastcancer #cancer #cancerdiagnosis

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DGZ

Tuesday 13th of May 2014

I started buying books about cancer two years before my diagnosis, based on a thump in my chest wall that I had felt a couple of times when moving down and forward. The experience of this sensation happened only a couple of times and then never came back but it left me wondering.

Nancy

Tuesday 13th of May 2014

DGZ, I bet it did leave you wondering...strange sensation indeed. Thanks for reading and sharing.

Stacey

Tuesday 26th of October 2010

Hi Nancy, To be honest, I don't remember exactly how I found your blog. I may have seen the name on a blog list or a comment you made somewhere. I was searching a lot of blogs looking for something that clicked with me. A blog, a person I could relate to. Which is ultimately why i started my own. I thought maybe someone would find me. Happily, I came across yours and felt a connection. Sorry it has to be cancer and our moms and all that crap, but life is what it is. Thank you for your kind words on my blog. It's young, but I'm enjoying doing it.

Also, I just want to comment on the post about your mother. I'm sorry for your loss. It's still very recent and must be very hard. It's ten years for me and yes, I was prepared too, but it certainly didn't make it easier. I was glad she was out of pain, but pissed off that I couldn't help make her better. Allow yourself the sadness, but believe that time does help eventually.

I look forward to reading more of your blog.

Nancy

Wednesday 27th of October 2010

Stacey, Thanks for your comments. I think you will find blogging to be very theraputic and I wish you luck getting yours going. Mine is new as well. I am ejoying it a lot and hopefully it is helping people somewhere along the line too.

Stacey

Sunday 24th of October 2010

Hi Nancy, I'm so glad I've found your blog. I've been looking and looking and have had trouble finding anything... a blog about someone like me. I was diagnosed in May of 2009. It's true what you say about intuition. I remember on my biopsy day, the nurse kept telling me 85% of these cases are benign and the whole time I kept wishing she'd stop saying that because I just knew mine wouldn't be. I knew it like I know my name and of course, as I found out 48 hours later, I was right. It's been an interesting road since then. I'll continue to read about your journey. I hope all goes well and thank you for sharing. Not everyone does.

Nancy

Monday 25th of October 2010

Stacey, I'm glad you found my blog as well. How did you find it? I'll be interested to read about your experience with all this stuff. It seems we do indeed have some things in common. Hope you'll be back soon. Thanks for your kind comments.

Leslie Collins

Saturday 23rd of October 2010

Nancy, thank you for steering me to your blog. We are "fearfully and wonderfully made," and you will watch in amazement as your body comes back to life after chemotherapy, surgery and all the rest. The hair will come back, the chemo brain will go by the wayside, and your whole body will heal. I will keep you in my prayers.

Nancy

Wednesday 27th of October 2010

Leslie, I'm happy you made your way to my blog as well. Thanks for your encouraging words. I am looking forward to my whole body healing, that's for sure!

Teri S.

Saturday 23rd of October 2010

Hi Nancy - abosolutely! I knew I would test positive too. In fact, I've spoken with Dr. Herman (an hboc advocate and ob/gyn in NY) about this, and it seems the majority of us have this 'feeling' - it's like we just know. One of those times it would have been nice to be wrong, right?

Hugs! Teri

Nancy

Sunday 24th of October 2010

Teri, I'm so glad you checked out my blog and took time to comment. Hope you'll be back soon. That must have been an interesting conversation with Dr. Herman. Yeh, I sure would have preferred being wrong on this one.

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