It is amazing how difficult that was form to type and how difficult it was for me to say. It is almost as difficult as it was for me to say “I have breast cancer”.
I’ve actually been cancer free since December 17, 2014 – when the last of my breast tissue was removed from my body and my new ‘not breasts’ were created. However, whenever someone asked, I always said it with the caveat as far as I know. I did not want to jinx it, and say it. But that has meant that I’ve been carrying the burden of not believing it. With every new (or old) ache or pain, I fear that it is cancer.
You see, I’ve had a variety of doctors appointments this week. Mostly 3/6 month checkups, but also a bit of a scare over headaches. I had both my oncologist and my breast surgeon say it No evidence of disease. Actually, it was amusing. When my breast surgeon walked in, I told her, I needed to hear the words. I needed her to say it. Her comment was that she writes it down all the time. She said it multiple times during my checkup. All clear – no evidence of disease – you are healthy, get on with your life, next checkup in a year – but if there is anything of concern, don’t hesitate to call/make and appointment.
Now that all my doctors have told me, I am finding that I just needed to say it. I need to say it a lot. I need say it until I can say it without crying. I need internalize what I’m saying and actually believe it.
Most of my non-cancer related healthcare is at PAMF. I’m going to have to start calling them first, rather than calling oncology first. As I walked back to the car after taking the picture, I realized that I never want to see the inside of the Stanford Hospital again – ever!
I then went to the gym. I practiced saying I am cancer free, first with my friend there, then with others in the group (my friend kept encouraging me – or more like making me). I still cannot type it without crying, but I’m getting there. So one more time, I am cancer free.