X Marked the Lump on my Breast

X Marked a Lump on My Breast - An story about knowing what to do for early #BreastCancer Detection My Pocketful of Thoughts  http://wp.me/p3jfjy-O6

WHAT IS THIS? My fingers felt a grape size lump under my right breast. Is this a lump on my breast? My heart skipped a beat. What does it look like? I asked Daniel, my future husband, to describe it to me? It looks like a pimple. Maybe. OK. So maybe it is a pimple and my skin is reacting to it. To be on the safe side I’ll make an appointment on Monday. The what if its not kept my mind racing for hours. It took all of my willpower to not get into bed and cry. It took all of strength to not freak out. If I did freak out then this finding was real. Do you check yourself regularly for any changes? 

I don’t know how I got through the rest of Saturday. I can’t even tell you what I did. Its all a blur today. I remember going to Sports Authority with Daniel and my nieces to find Ariana a tennis racquet. I walked into the store and ran towards the bathroom. I knew the tears were trying to burst through in the car ride to Norwalk and I didn’t want them to see me cry. Hold on, where’s my tissue. I did use the bathroom and I did cry. I didn’t for long though. I wouldn’t let myself.

It’s just a pimple. Its just a pimple. Its just a pimple. itsjustapimpleitsjustapimpleitsjustapimple . . .

I don’t know how many times I said it before I finally calmed myself down enough to go out and find the family. As I walked towards them, the racquet was already selected. I had wanted to take pictures and notes on the whole shopping process. But I had missed the whole thing.

The rest of the evening was better. I didn’t cry again until Sunday morning. I woke up to my mom telling me Analis hadn’t come home from her friends party on Saturday night. I was at a loss for words. I had hoped that she had stayed at her friends house. I called her cell. No answer. I sent out calls to her, her friend and her boyfriend. No answer. An hour later I was ready to drive to her friends house, when Analis walked into my bedroom. Sorry Titi, my phone was on silent.

I let Daniel know that I had found her. She’d been home the whole time.  She had been asleep in the spare bedroom, a mere 10 feet away from me. The tears burst through at that moment. I was tired. I wasn’t sure if I could wait another day to make an appointment. But I wiped my face and headed off to church. After all, it was just a pimple.

Being in Mass though, I seemed to cry even more. The tears kept coming down as I said silent prayers to my Lord Jesus Christ. I apologized for complaining about all the unexpectedness that had moved into my life as of late. I listened to the sermon talk about how we’re going to live on forever, after our body is gone. Yes, our spirit lives on. I just didn’t want to leave so soon. Daniel hugged me. I completely forgot he was there. I didn’t want him to see me crying. After all, it was just a pimple.

I put on a happy face and it really helped in tricking my mind to enjoy the beautiful Sunday that was. I brought my niece to school and made it to work on time. Before I called the doctor’s office, I found myself in the bathroom at work taking a picture of my breast. To see if the pimple was still there. It was and so was the lump.

MOTHER FLOWER MOTHER FLOWER MOTHER FLOWER MOTHER FLOWER MOTHER FLOWER

I called the Women’s Health office. The receptionist asked what was the reason for my appointment. I lowered my voice and spoke slowly. She let me know that my doctor’s next available appointment was a week away. She listed the other doctors that were available. But I took the appointment a week away. It was a pimple. There isn’t a rush for that right?

As soon as I hung up the phone I regretted it but I couldn’t find the strength to call back. If I did, I would be admitting that it was not a pimple. God must have known I’d have a nervous breakdown between Monday and next Tuesday because the receptionist called back with 3 cancellations for the next morning. I took the earliest of the 3.

I did a lot of breathing on Tuesday morning. Breathe in. Breathe out. Its funny because I never thought about having to tell myself to breathe. We breathe automatically right? I just knew that if I didn’t tell myself, I might hold my breathe and pass out. I had to at least make it to the doctor’s.

I was taken almost immediately but it felt like an eternity as I waited for my doctor to come into the room. I was surprisingly calm. I don’t know if Sunday’s sermon sunk in a few days later or what but I felt ready to hear whatever news was about to come. The calm before the storm. It was probably the supportive future husband I have. Asking me to call with the news as soon as I got it. He’d be there with me every step of the way. Whatta mighty fine man I have!

After her examine, she had me check the area again. The lump had gone down in size significantly. She explained that the sweat ducts had become irritated creating the lump I had felt on Saturday. My body had healed itself. I heard a loud exhale. I hadn’t noticed that I had held my breath.

When it comes to our health, we should address matters right away. I was assured that I’d done the right thing in coming in. A grape sized lump on your breast is something to raise concern about. It is better to be safe than sorry. Really. I can’t imagine what its like to get a different diagnosis. I don’t want to imagine. Breast Cancer runs in my family so …

If you take anything away from what I’ve shared, please understand that its important to know what to look for during self examinations. I found this great Infographic through a google search on early breast cancer detection:

Infographic: Breast Self Exam and Cancer Facts - LocateADoc.com
Breast Self Exam and Cancer Facts, Courtesy of LocateADoc.com

 

Do you perform self-examinations once a month? Have you ever detected a lump? Share your story with us in the comments below so we can learn together!

Until then,

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PS: If you are looking for more personal stories on having breast cancer and surviving it head on over to my girl’s site My Fabulous Boobies. Tell Nicole I sent you!

Debt Keeps Me Up At Night

Confessions of A Single Woman: Debt Gives Me Nightmares ... 5 Things I Tell Myself to Keep Positive About My Debt  http://wp.me/p3jfjy-Ni

My debt keeps me up most nights. It wasn’t always that way though. It seems like forever ago, but I used to be positive about my debt. I know what you’re thinking. How can I say positive AND debt in the same sentence? I assure you it’s possible to feel positive about your debt. I did it for years. I got myself on a debt elimination diet. It was going down! Yay! I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. But then a couple of unexpected expenses came up AT THE SAME TIME and the light began to dim. Then the light disappeared completely and I tried not to panic. What the FROG is touching my leg?!!! I really am afraid of the dark. Are you struggling to stay positive about your debt? I’ve been feeling overwhelmed for the past 14 months until I remembered my financial services training last week.

Last year around this time I was curled up on my bed staring into space. I had just paid off my Chase credit card. I was excited about having more money in my budget to pay down my debt faster. But then my beloved Beetle, the one I had just fixed before I went to Puerto Rico on vacation with Daniel, decided to get worse. Driving back from the airport, I didn’t think we’d make it home! It felt like Mr. Blueberry Salsa was going to fall apart at any moment. After I took it back to the dealership, I was told that the transmission was not worth fixing. I could try but it might not fix the hard shifting. What?

How to buy your dream car.

Sigh. Did you ever have a car give out on you before you finished paying it off? I was not prepared to have to look for a car before I had finished paying off my Beetle!

I prayed on what to do. I ended up buying a brand new car a model year older. So far so good. However, I wasn’t prepared to spend more on a monthly car loan payment, a higher car insurance bill or a higher car tax bill. To make matters worse it started to get slow at work and I was working on a type of commissions system. Less work coming in meant less money in my paycheck. My total debt started to climb higher and higher. Did I mention I’m also afraid of heights?

I wanted to share with you my journey to financial freedom earlier but I felt ashamed. But why?

I kept thinking of all the things I should have done differently in my life so I would NOT be feeling like everything was passing me by because of my debt. If I hadn’t gone on that last vacation. If I didn’t gain weight I wouldn’t have needed to buy clothes that fit. If I had eaten healthy when I was younger I wouldn’t have had to spend all that money on personal training sessions. Could you think of a few things to add here?

5 Things I Tell Myself to Keep Positive About My Debt:

  1. Things are always going to come up in life that we want to do but have to pass on
  2. Emergencies happen all the time
  3. Debt is temporary
  4. A debt elimination plan is in place (Do you have one?)
  5. It took years to accumulate so it will not go away magically over night (right?)

I know for a fact that there are many of us out there who feel like they’re drowning in debt. Whatever choices we made for our debt to accumulate doesn’t change the fact that the debt is there. If we stay focused though, we can pay it off! We just have to stay positive. Last year I worried so much about it that it seemed to bring only more debt accumulation my way. If we do it together though …can we keep each other motivated?

Over the next couple of months I’ll be sharing different topics I learned when I decided to take control of my finances. I’ll also keep you updated on my debt elimination progression. I hope that during this journey we learn together and turn that feeling of anxiety over money into a feeling of hope and optimism.

How do you feel about your personal finances? What do you do to keep from stressing over money?

Until then,

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Genesis 7. God does not give idle threats.

Genesis 7 - God does not make idle threats. The rain continued to fall for forty days and forty nights.

What’s the magic number in Genesis 7? As we read this chapter there is only one number that appears repeatedly. You guessed it! 7. It appears in the title. It appears in the number of animals God instructed Noah to put on board the boat that were approved for eating and sacrifice. It’s the number of days that took for the floods to begin after Noah and his family boarded the boat. What is the significance of the number 7 though? WHY 7? Continue reading

What’s up with you? Wedding Planning, Unexpected Surprises and Life

Hello! How are you? It seems like we haven’t spoken in ages, right? I’ve been having conversations with you in my head a lot lately, but it never seems to go further than that. The minute I think I can sit down and catch up with you, something happens. Or I get an unexpected surprise at my door step. Life has been a bit overwhelming as of late and I don’t get in front of you as much as I’d like. I hope you’ll forgive me. See what happened was . . . Continue reading

Genesis 6. Why Noah built an ark.

genesis 6 ... why Noah Built his ArkIf God told you that he was going to destroy the earth because He was upset with how humans treated themselves and the Earth, would you believe Him? If God told you to build an Ark that would save your life and that of your families, would you build it? Those are just some of the questions that Noah had to face in Genesis 6 of the Bible. Would you do the same if you were in Noah’s shoes? Or would you Continue reading

Genesis 5

Genesis 5 of the Holy BIble

Genesis 5 introduces us to a slew of people that are descendants of Adam and Eve. Did this chapter bring up any questions for you? This is my first time reading the Bible through from start to finish, so I’ve had quite a few. I did not know that we began living such very very VERY long lives! I wonder when that changes. “Adam lived 930 years, and then he died.” (Genesis 5: 5) Could you imagine living that long in this day in age?  Continue reading

Genesis 4

genesis 4We are now on Chapter 4 of Genesis in from The Daily Walk Bible NLT (New Living Translation).It is available on Amazon if you haven’t purchases it yet. Every Sunday tune in to read another chapter and reflect on one of the questions asked in the guide. You can write your thoughts in the comments section or write them down in a journal. When I read different excerpts of the Bible, I like to write notes down. It’s a great way to really take the words in. In general we are Continue reading