This past week has been extremely difficult…I feel like so much has happened in such a short period of time that it feels like a month has passed even though it’s only been 11 days. I am thankful my mum was with me for the worst part which was the initial meeting with my oncologist.
I found out the cancer is invasive ductile carcinoma, estrogen + and HER2 +. My oncologist says this means 6 months of chemotherapy, followed by (a likely double) mastectomy, radiation, and breast reconstruction. I had to go in for a variety of blood tests, a PET scan, and had my port-a-cath device inserted (all within 4 days). One aspect of the blood work was genetic testing to see if the cancer I have is hereditary. If it is positive it will allow my family members to get tested, and even though I have brothers it would allow them to get tested and in turn if they are positive for the gene and have daughters, their daughters can be tested. It amazes me sometimes how far medicine has come.
I was referred to a fertility clinic to look into the possibility of IVF since chemo may render me infertile. The physician there said if I did not start RIGHT away that it would not be an option – without the time to be able to think about it, and the idea that they would be pumping me full of hormones to stimulate the follicles (and my cancer is estrogen +) I decided against it. I need to put my own health first, and at 27 I really have no idea if kids are what I want in my life. There are always other options I suppose.
Needless to say this has been a bit of an emotional week, a lot of information to take in, a lot of emotions to process, a lot of incredible support from the amazing people around me. Honestly I don’t think I would be in such positive spirits if it was not for them.
I still don’t know when chemo is slated to start, but I gather I will find out this week (the fertility specialist said my referral indicated within 10 days – that would mean this week).
On the positive I was able to find myself a wig this weekend (yay, small wins) and got to spend some time with good friends – which is a good distraction.