I woke up and opened my email to find some fantastic news! I have lumpy boobs! I was thrilled to be able to shoot off an email to all of my prayer warriors proclaiming this fun fact, and of course my husband and I got a giggle out of it too.
And then, at about noon, I got a phone call.
It turns out, they only send good news in emails. Bad news comes from the phone.
My doctor asked if I was driving. No.
Are you home? Yes.
I had a sneaking suspicion this wasn’t going to be good.
The tests from the day before show that one of my breasts is lumpy. The other breast, my doctor explained, has a lump, well, two actually, that are consistent with cancer.
She sounded so sad and apologetic that I just had to stop her. “Doctor, I have a favorite quote by a guy named Gregory Boyle. It goes like this: ‘In the end it will all be okay. And if it’s not okay, it’s not the end.’ So, this is not the end. I’m ready to walk this out. What do we do next?”
She said words like “cancer center” and “lumpectomy” and “mri” but I wasn’t really listening to her words. I was thinking about how much this part of her job must suck. So I told her that. “Doctor, I am so sorry you have to make calls like this. This must be so hard.” She admitted she hated breast cancer. Yeah, me too.
I called my friend Kamie and asked her to text all the Prayer Warriors and tell them what had happened. I just didn’t want to do it. I was still feeling peaceful and grateful and joyful even and I didn’t want to ruin that by explaining things too many times. Kamie did a great job. And she brought me cookies. I have good friends.
I waited to tell Saul until he got home from work. Okay, actually he was golfing and I figured there was no point in ruining a perfectly good golf game with bad news that we couldn’t do anything about anyway.
So, I gave him about 10 minutes to play with the kids when he got home before I ushered him into our bedroom for a quick chat.
It’s funny how differently men and women hear things. I heard “consistent with cancer” and assumed I had better prepare myself for a battle with cancer. Saul heard “consistent with cancer” and solemnly stated, “You don’t have cancer. It’s not cancer. It’s just a lump.” Kind of like, “Listen here everybody. We are not doing this. This is not going to become part of our family story. Nope. Not happening.”
I go to the Stefanie Spielman Breast Center in 12 days for a lumpectomy. I guess we’ll find out who’s right soon enough.