Ruth's musings

I have been dealing with breast cancer for a while, and have been sharing my journey with friends, family, and prayer partners. This blog brings all my updates together in one place, and leaves me free to muse on other parts of my life. Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Ruth Update #3

March 5, 2006

Dear friends, relatives, and prayer partners,

This was the week that the battle was joined. I had radiation treatments every day, and will again next week. So far, I have felt a bit "sunburned," and in places that don't normally get any sun! Other than that, the treatments are easy to take. I lie on the table, the techs line me up by my tattoos, they leave the room and a lead door closes behind them. The machine makes some noise. Then, it rotates around to give me another shot from behind. I get up, get dressed, and go home. It takes longer driving back and forth than being treated.

I met with the radiation oncologist on Friday and asked that she show me a picture of my tumor. She had outlined it on an x-ray, but I have to take her word for it. Aside from a little irregularity at the edge of my hip bone, it didn't look much different from the rest of the bone. The area radiated is quite a bit larger than the tumor, for which I am grateful.

I have a consult with a surgeon on March 13th to discuss implanting my medi-port. I will be done with radiation by then, but this is the earliest my HMO could get me in. The appointments person said she would include a note to let me know if any appointments came open earlier, but I have not yet heard of any.

I must offer my apologies to those for whom I usually pray daily. One evening this week, all I could manage to pray was "Help me." I am still feeling pretty depressed. I think my doctors are more optimistic than I am. Don't get me wrong, I believe I have years left, but I fear I may die young. I need some more angels, I guess. Guilt is a big part of my depression. I firmly believe that if I had been doing my self-exams, I would have caught the cancer before it got into my lymph nodes. I may sound like a broken record on that, but I feel that if anything good can come of this, it is that I can influence somebody to do self-exams on a regular basis. And just to cover all the bases, men can also get breast cancer. I personally know one man who has been treated for breast cancer, and know of another. So, men, check yourselves out, too. At least you don't have to put up with mammograms! Sorry women. Get your mammograms. Do your self-exams.

Love and thanks,

Ruth Provance

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