I was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 27 on June 29, 2016.  I decided to blog about my experience fighting breast cancer in the hopes that I can help others out there, especially young women, who are diagnosed with breast cancer as well. 

xo,

Elyse

Cancer Stats:

  • Stage II
  • ER+ PR+
  • Node Negative

 

My Mastectomy is Tomorrow

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My mastectomy is happening tomorrow. OMG. It's now countdown to D-Day.

I’m going to be receiving a nipple-sparring mastectomy, which means that they make an incision under your breast (I believe they call it a bra-line incision) and then they just go and scoop everything out—but in a much more complicated and complex way than how I just explained it. 

The good news here is that I’ll get to keep all my skin and my nipple! YAY! 

There is a chance I may lose the nipple eventually, if it comes back that it’s cancerous in my pathology report, but we’re thinking good thoughts here today folks!!!

As a side note: Before I knew I was a candidate for nipple-sparring mastectomy, I was looking at pictures of mastectomies online (good idea if you want to increase your anxiety exponentially) and was kind of freaking out. I had a little convo with my boyfriend Matt (AKA, M@) that went something like this:

Me: Will you still like me if I don't have nipples?

M@: Um, yeah I don't really spend that much time with your nipples.

Me: HAHA, okay just checkin.

But yeah, that helped put it into perspective for me.

I am not my nipples. 

However, let's go back to the impending mastectomy:

I’ll also be receiving something that’s called a Sentinal Lymph Node biopsy.  In this procedure, (according to how I understand it) they inject your breast with radio-active fluid in advance of your mastectomy and try to identify where your sentinel lymph node is hanging out in your armpit. They then go in and remove that one during surgery to test and see if the cancer has spread to it. The sentinel lymph node, I believe, is the closest one to your breast, so they aim to take that one out for sure, as it’s most likely to be infected with cancer if it has spread out of the breast.

So, I’ll be doing that too. Sounds like a great time, right?

My biggest fear going into surgery is that I’m scared of waking up in the middle. Everyone tells me that it’s not likely to happen but, hey, it was unlikely for me to get breast cancer at age 27 and yet here I am!

I’m also scared about how I’ll react emotionally to not having a boob anymore. I mean, obviously I’m doing reconstruction so I’ll have an expander placed in right after the mastectomy which they’ll gradually fill up until it's time for me to get permanent implants.

But still. Ugh. So, I’m just sitting here, enjoying my last day with my boob.

My best friend Lauren had her mastectomy on Friday. I visited her yesterday and she is doing AWESOME! Like, I hope I can be like her. She is my mastectomy idol. She even went to the grocery store with her mom…for like 5 minutes.

I was scarred about the drains but they don’t seem to be a big deal. She showed me how to empty them while I was there. I got a real-life demonstration so I should be all set. 

It’s such a blessing that even though we’re both going through this horrible thing, we at least are going through it together. I don’t think a lot of people get to say that. 

2 Week Mastectomy Anniversary

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