About Me...

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In a nut shell : I'm a wife, a full time working mom, a teacher, a Star Wars geek, comic book nerd, Disney enthusiast, hockey Mom, a decade long breast cancer survivor, and oh let's not forget such a happy, sassy, southern mess!

Monday, October 20, 2008

The Elephant In The Room!





Below is the Houston Chronicle Article that I was interviewed for. Kim did a great job and I am thankful to have been included. The options a woman has today are amazing but without proper information it can be disastrous.


I know it is hard to believe that it has been 32 months since I lost my breast. It seems a world away actually. Life has moved on, and I have adjusted to living life as it is. The chemo is behind me, I have been in remission for 2 years and so it would seem the breast reconstruction would be also. Truth be told, I am still caught somewhere in the middle of that process all this time later. I have lived too long in this in between state. Not a uniboob so to speak but not quite a two wheeler either. When I started down this road I was not properly informed. I was thrown into the process and then left "as is" because of the mighty dollar in all honesty. I wasn't told that I would have to come back in 10 years to have my implant replaced, or that silicone was controversial. No one told me how painful it was going to be, but I dealt with the pain and kept going. So why am I so frustrated now? Well, what was suppose to be an easy fix has become an elephant in the room. This replacement breast of mine is becoming increasingly harder to deal with everyday.


Honestly I am just tired of looking at a large lump with no shape in the mirror. I am beyond ready to have it removed. But once again, the mighty dollar is the problem. If my surgeon at the time would have followed the plan set out initially I might be in a different place now. Unfortunately he was more concerned with the money to be made. By drawing out the process much longer than necessary he accumulated more cash from my insurance company.. Finally he canceled a major procedure to take in a cash paying patient ahead of my insurance based pay out. So when it came down to it in the end , as my insurance changed just a few months later, I was abandoned halfway through the reconstruction process.


As I continue to wrestle with this big elephant I am just not sure what to do. I have come to a crossroad right now while trying to make one of the biggest decisions yet. Do I save up, go forward after all this time and have the breast finished, removed or have a trans flap procedure? I just want this all to be done with so that I can put this part of my breast cancer to bed. It is time don't you think?


My husband loves me just as I am. My children have accepted the "new" mommy. What do I have to lose? Nothing really. So now it is up to me as to what I do from here. Dealing with this issue is not about feeling whole, not anymore anyway. When this all began I would have said yes I needed a breast to be whole and beautiful. I do not feel that way anymore. What I don't want is to is live the rest of my life in the middle of a process that should have been finished 18 months ago. Yes, it does bring me to tears. I do stand in the bathroom every morning and evening as I change looking at Dr. Frankenstein's creation. I lay in bed every night with the weight of my implant baring down on me. I live in spite of what I look and feel like everyday. Even when I want to hide myself away, I put on a brave face to the world wondering if I could have done things differently. I still have those moments, those insecure minutes when I fall apart. Life threw me a curve ball. I did not choose this path, no, it was chosen for me, I could have thrown in the towel, stomped off the field of life angry and resentful. But I didn't. Instead I chose to live my life bravely. So no, I am not resentful nor would I choose another path in life. I have embraced my new life, I just wish I had been better informed back when I was first beginning my journey.



So that brings me back to this: I have a choice to make. I also have some funds and a voice to raise. I guess I should have stopped the ball in the beginning. Sadly things moved way too fast and in the process I had no control over what was happening to my body. I wonder how many other women have faced the same? So whatever road I choose ahead it will be my decision. I will be in control this time. It may be painful, both physically and emotionally but whatever the outcome I will be ready for it this time.



Christina

8 comments:

  1. Oh my! What a brave and courageous woman you are. Blessings to you, your spirit, and your will to carry on.
    Love, Karen

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  2. Christina, this is beautifully written and thank you for putting the truth out there. I believe this happens to many women when they face the beast. It shouldn't be that way but the mighty dollar sure does talk.
    I'm having trouble getting your comment section open so I can leave a comment. I don't know what is causing it but I read that others are having trouble leaving comments too.
    Love & Hugs,
    Debbie

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  3. WOW! So much to sift through at a time when you were so vunerable. I am sorry that you are still in limbo. FWIW there is a clinic in New Orleans that my sister used to reconstruct her breast and she has been so pleased with the results. I can get the information if you are interested.

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  4. I am sitting here with my mouth open, shaking my head. What has happen to you so so wrong! Don't the doctors realize the cancer is bad enough without this further humilation to your life and body? I am so sorry about it. SPEAK UP AND OUT LOUD to everyone-make them do (fix) what feels right for you and we will spread the story so others will know. Love, Dannelle

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  5. It's amazing that a doctor has so little compassion he didn't see the patient before him. To me you've always been beautiful, no hair, hair, even with a half breast. The one thing they were not able to take from you was that beautiful spirit, your brighter than all those doctors together. Whichever way you choose to go with this hon, I'm here for the journey. I've got your hand, you lead. (Hugs)Indigo

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  6. Beautiful ~ Thank you for YOU and for sharing a part of you.
    Take care,
    Katie

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  7. Your spirit soars no matter what you endure! blessings and i know you will shine on the other side of this~kbear

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  8. You are in my prayers you are one brave lady who deserved better than you got.I pray you will soon find the comfort you are much needing .Take Care God Bless Kath xx

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