There is good news to report today! Here is what the pathology report states (emphasis mine):
Left breast with axillary contents, Radical Mastectomy:
Invasive moderately differentiated adenocarcinoma, ductal type, 3.0 x 2.7 x 2.7 cm.
Associated moderately differentiated ductal carcinoma in situ is present.
No vascular invasion is identified.
Thirty-seven lymph nodes negative for tumor.
Negative surgical margins.
Nipple, no significant pathologic abnormality is identified.
This is most definitely an answer to prayer! I didn't even realize how so very worried I was until I was able to read the report. I could physically feel a weight being lifted from my shoulders and it was like I could instantly breathe easier.
I don't know what this will mean as far as treatment goes, but, I know that I will face it with more hope than before. These past few days have been very hard for me....both emotionally and physically. I want to be back to "normal" but I now have to consider what my new "normal" will be. Today, I am still very sore. My arm is sore all the way down including my forearm. The surgical tape is beginning to peel away and causing some burning and itching. Whenever I stand up (or sit down) or move around in any way, the muscles in my left chest and underarm area begin to pull and stretch! This causes great pain! Sometimes, it brings tears to my eyes. For the first few days, much of my upper left torso was numb. This was because of anesthesia and the fact that they severed many tiny nerves. The numbness is beginning to recede and thereby allowing me to feel more of the pain. I know this is normal but, it makes the reality of what has just happened inescapable. I thought I might be able to hide under the covers or hide behind pain medication for a couple of weeks and then be back in the normal swing of things. Apparently, that's not going to happen any time soon.
Peggy, who is one of the breast care coordinators that has been helping me through this, said that with this journey I will have times when it is one step forward and two steps back. She was right. I don't know if any of you are familiar with the game Chutes and Ladders (I've played endless games with my kids) but I feel like lately my life is a lot like that game. If you've played it...you'll know what I mean.
I made a point to get up, get dressed and go to mass as a family this morning. I purposely didn't take a pain pill because I didn't want to be loopy at church. Although it made sitting in the pew more painful...I felt surrounded by family and friends and I was strengthened. I didn't feel self conscious about my chest being flat on one side. I felt loved and supported. I am still overwhelmed by the love and care that our family has been shown through this time. A dear friend likened it to those Verizon commercials....you know the ones...where the whole Verizon team follows behind the customer. This is EXACTLY how I feel!! You guys are the BEST team I could ever have! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!!