Thursday, April 28, 2011

If You Only Knew...

When you or someone you love finds a lump in her breast this is what happens: Your hand stops over the lump and a sharp, deep, fear strikes in your gut. You run your  hand over it again, hoping it wasn't there and you were somehow wrong. But it is still there. Your mind and heart begin to race. You cannot control your thoughts. You imagine the worst and you think about dying.

After a few moments  pass, the thoughts of death are joined by the prospect of horrifying surgeries, chemotherapy, losing your hair, losing your way of life. Your future seems wiped out completely. Every plan you made suddenly disappears.

An hour passes. Maybe you have called a friend or told a family member. Hopefully, you have called a doctor and made an appointment. This is filled with its own terror, because it would mean that what you fear may be confirmed and you will be strapped into a roller coaster ride from hell. You don't know how long the ride will be, if you will survive it, if it will ever end and who you will be when you get off it.

In all this time, to all the people you have reached out to, to the doctor's scheduling nurse, you never once said, " I found a lump on my ta ta." or "My boobie has a lump." No. You said, "I have a lump on my breast." Your hand rests upon it as you say those words. The memories of your adolescence when they first developed rush in. Your child nursing from it makes you weep. A part of you has something inside it that will change your life forever. It isn't pink. It isn't a cute slang word. It isn't sexy. It is terrifying, devastating and incredibly sad.

For those of us who have experienced this, you won't see us prancing around proclaiming we had boobie cancer or our ta ta's are about to be removed. No. We know better. And no matter how much pink gross grain thrown at us, nothing can ever bring us back to the day before we found that lump in our breast. Nothing.

10 comments:

The Accidental Amazon said...

Just tried to leave a comment, but don't know if it went through.

Anyway, Amen, Gina. Love you to pieces.

xxoo, Kathi

Katie said...

Lovely, concise, poignant and a capital T Truth.

Thank you,
Katie

Stacey said...

Beautiful, poignant and exactly right. Thank you.

Janis said...

Amen.

Janis said...

Isn't that the truth!

MizGreenJeans said...

Perfectly said. Thank you for this.

Anna Rachnel said...

Hauntingly accurate descriptions Gina. You took me right back there. Dark times and nothing pink, cute or sexy about it.

Anonymous said...

the world sort of went on without me and i felt like screaming in the middle of Tescos (the day after when it started to sink in)stop thi inane buying and shopping - i have cancer - what else matters.... but unless you've been there...

Being Sarah said...

Yes, so true. This really touched me - 'Every plan you made suddenly disappears.' Exactly. Thank you for this.

Gayle Sulik said...

The first time I tried to post a comment two weeks ago, I couldn't. But I wanted to come back now just to let you know how much I appreciated this post. It brings the "real" back to the forefront, and we need some realism in pink culture.