I'm going to start at the beginning of my journey with breast cancer.
On September 5, I had a stereotactic biopsy for some microcalcifications that were detected on a routine mammogram. I have had a history of fibrocystic breast disease and have had numerous apirations and biopsys in the past. I fully expected the pathology report to be benign. On September 8, I went to New York City to visit my daughter, Kate and attend an "End of Life" conference at Beth Israel Hospital. Toward the end of the day on September 9, I called our answering machine and was instructed to call the radiologist at home. He notified me that I had mid to high grade ductal carcinoma in situ. He informed me that I needed to contact a surgeon and have a lumpectomy. SHOCK....DISBELIEF....HE HAD TO MAKE A MISTAKE....THE LAB MADE A MISTAKE. Went back to my workshop and told one of the presenters that I had to leave because I was just diagnosed with breast cancer. Left the hospital visibly shaking. Called my daughter and told her I needed her right now. Sweet girl, ran from where she was to be with me. I cried in her arms. Took a taxi back to our hotel and made a few phone calls....Gary, Mike, Katy. I just couldn't call my mom. She has had so much sadness in her life. I called my sister. Kate and I walked to St. Patrick's Cathedral. We visited each altar and lit many votives. I prayed with urgency. Kate and I visited the gift shop and bought matching bracelets which we agreed to wear throughout my treatment. We also bought prayer cards for Saint Peregrine (patron saint of cancer) and Saint Agatha (patron saint of breast disease). We agreed to pray regularly to these saints. My heart broke for sweet Kate....how awful to be alone with your mom in NYC on the day she is diagnosed with breast cancer. She was awesomely supportive. We went to see a broadway play and went to dinner that night at Dos Caminos. We visited with my cousins son, Mike Kabat and his wife, Katie.
September 10 - went back to my workshop. Made it through the whole day. At lunch, I went directly to Barnes and Noble and began researching breast cancer. I have worked as an oncology social worker for the past six years but now my research was on a personal level. I bought several books and two matching journals that Kate and I could use to write about our feelings through this ordeal. That night, we went to another play and went to dinner and I met her friend, Brian for desert.
September 11 - My day to return home. I was hard for me to leave Kate. We took a taxi together to her job and I went in and saw the gym and then I went to the airport. I was able to get an earlier flight. Read all the way home.