Saturday, February 12, 2011

Moving right along...

At my last appointment with Dr. Ellis she told me it was time to start planning my surgery. I had some mixed feelings about this. I knew this part was coming, and fast, but, I was just getting used to my chemo routine. In a strange way, I find comfort in my chemo routine. Even though I've spent many many hours the last few weeks researching and looking at images of women who have underwent a mastectomy, I still wasn't mentally prepared for this next phase. I avoided looking at these images (and pretty much anything else to do with breast cancer) until just recently. When Dr. Ellis warned me the preparation for surgery usually causes a lot of stress to women, she was right. The site of some of these images put me in a panic, maybe even depressed. As much as I know this has to be done (and I want it done), there's really no way of preparing yourself. Maybe there is, and I just havent found my peace with it yet. Since this whole cancer thing started, I've pretty much just taken things day to day, not really looked into the future. Planning the surgery is forcing me to do that. Forcing me to start dealing with the fact I am having my breasts removed and what that means. Imagining looking down at myself and instead of having breasts, I will have scars. But the scars mean I won, right? They are just my war wounds? I'm trying hard to remind myself of this.

The day after treatment I called two surgeons Dr. Ellis recommended. I first did some research on both and was pretty confident I knew which doctor I wanted to go with. But, I scheduled appointments with both just to be sure. My first appointment was on Thursday with Dr. Claire Buchanan. She was my first choice as she deals primarily with breast cancer surgeries. I liked the idea that the breasts were her specialty. :) I had Justine come to this appointment with me for two reasons. First, the nurse called me after I scheduled my appointment to recommend I have someone with me when I met with the doctor. This was concerning to me because this meant it really was going to be as scary as I'd imagined this appointment to be. But I also knew she would be calming to me while there. Dr. Buchanan spent a lot of time going over my cancer and even showed me the image from my first MRI. Halfway through the appointment I was at ease. I wasn't as scared and even felt like I could be ready to do this. Maybe... : p  

I scheduled my surgery on April 25th for a bilateral mastectomy. Yiiiiikes!


  1. You are so brave, I'm glad Justine went with you!!Still keeping you in my prayers!!

  2. Margie, I am so blessed to know you. Thank you for sharing your journey with me. I think of you daily & pray you find at least a few minutes a day of peace and blissful escape from all of this. Though I can't completely relate, I can tell you that breast scars do heal indeed, and although they will no doubt serve as a reminder of your difficlt battle, the memory of strength & triumph will always prevail. All my love pretty girl..xoxo chellechelle

  3. Margie,
    My friend had her breast removed as well, I actually went to visit her last week. She showed me her scare, it was almost nothing. Her doctor was Dr. Dawson there at Swedish for the mastectomy, just in case you need to talk to someone or see what they have been through before your's, I know she would love to chat.
    Either way my love, your a strong one.. the strongest I think God makes em. I LOVE YOU .. your in my prayers daily.. sometimes twice.

  4. Margie,
    I just came across your blog today and must say that you made a great surgeon choice. She performed my partner's mastectomy last Summer and did amazing work. Definitely take Dr. B's advice and join the ACTIVE program. They teach you important exercises and self-massages that'll advance your healing process.
    Good luck. You're in incredible hands.