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I was just diagnosed with breast cancer this week. I am 57 years old. I am certainly not the first and won’t be the last person on this site to have dealt with cancer. I am lucky in a way. I had my annual mammogram 3 weeks ago and the radiologist saw something she didn’t like, so they had me come back for a follow-up. I’ve had these “scares” before and didn’t think much of anything about it. They did another mammogram, and then an ultrasound. Then I had a biopsy. The radiologist called me Thursday and told me that the biopsy was “positive”. That means it’s malignant. For those who have never been through this before, this all takes weeks. From first mammogram to biopsy was 2.5 weeks. Now I know it’s malignant but not what stage or whether it has spread. I see the surgeon on Tuesday and then they’ll schedule surgery.

My friends all think I am depressed and hiding. I am not really. It is all just so surreal. I am just waiting. It takes time and energy for me to process all of this. I suppose if I were an extrovert, I’d need to talk and gnash my teeth and cry. But I am not.

Breast cancer and, especially breast cancer treatment is not what it was years ago. I know that I’ll survive. I know that I’ll beat this. That doesn’t worry me. What worries me is being/feeling sick. I don’t want to be taken care of. As long as I can get through this, with my friends and family’s support, I’ll be fine. I’ll certainly have moments of panic, fear and sheer rage. But right now I am waiting. Maybe at some point, I’ll need to be taken care of. But I don’t need it right now. I just need to be alone.

So, I am here. Waiting. I hope that for anyone else who ends up going through this, whatever way you react is normal. Whatever you feel is normal. Cry, talk to your friends, or don’t. Right now, it’s all about me. It has to be. And I need to marshal my energy in the only way I know how. By being alone.

I hope my friends can understand. And for my friends on this site, I'll provide updates from time to time.  

I love you all.

Originally posted to hopeful on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 09:42 AM PST.

Also republished by Pink Clubhouse and Monday Night Cancer Club.

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