Posted 7/14/2012 6:52 AM (GMT -6)
Sorry to hear that you are having to join our group, but glad to hear you are being proactive by getting a second opinion. Good for you!
I was 36 when I was diagnosed with invasive ductal and lobular breast cancer. I had two young girls (they are both grown women now, and not far from the age I was at diagnosis!) I had lost my own mother to cancer when I was 7, so telling my girls and my dad... the hardest thing I ever had to do! Because I had lost my own mom, I was pretty convinced that this was the beginning of the end for me. And yet, here I am, 17 years later, telling you about it and feeling grateful for every day of those 17 years. When my surgeon confirmed that I had cancer, he blithely announced that "this is not the end of the world." And I remember thinking, "Yeah, that's easy for you to say. You're not the one with cancer. What are you going to say when you have to start taking out parts that I need?" So far, that hasn't happened!
Don't beat yourself up for not doing breast exams. That cancer has been growing for years without being palpable, so the time it took you to find it is probably not greatly significant in the long run.
You can get through this; most of us have felt like we weren't strong enough more than once, but you'd be surprised how strong you can be! Cry when you need to, rant and rage when you need to, but just remember that every party is best if it ends while you're still enjoying it, and that includes "pity parties!"
Take care,and feel free to vent here. We've been there ourselves.