Thursday, April 1, 2010

A year ago today...

...on April 1st, 2009 while touching my breast as I was about to nurse my son I felt a bean-sized lump. I tried not to worry, thought maybe it was something breastfeeding related, but knew I needed to get it checked right away. My primary care doc is less than a mile from my house so I decided to just show up first thing and get a script for a mammogram. As I sat at my dining room table the next morning waiting for her office to open I continued to absentmindedly feel my breast. It was then I found the other two lumps. I looked at my husband with sudden clarity and said, “I’m screwed.” It took 26 more days to get the diagnosis of invasive ductal carcinoma.

Since that day last year I have had a mastectomy and reconstruction, discovered the cancer spread ever so slightly to my lymph nodes and have gone through the wound healing process from Hell thanks to skin necrosis. I experienced an SVT after port placement, had almost a dozen chemo infusions and now have been diagnosed with lymphedema. To say this last year sucked more than any other year of my life would be the understatement of all time.

But I’m still here. My kids still have their mother.

That doesn't mean I am positive or grateful or even contemplative. That doesn't mean I haven't cried my eyes out a dozen times just this week alone. It just means that I know I have to hang on, there isn't any other alternative.

So today I will go to the infusion room at the hospital for treatment and joke around with the nurses and all my chemo comrades. We’ll hang out in our vinyl recliners while poison drips into our veins and we’ll laugh…because we always do.

Yup, today I will laugh, and for at least right now, that will have to be enough.

12 comments:

~Tessa~Scoffs said...

Kayleigh, You are ALWAYS in my prayers. Today and every day. I think of you, your husband and your two sweet children and I beg the almighty to give you the grace to persevere on your horrible journey. You are THE most amazing woman I know.

Sheila said...

Holy crap, hon, has it been a year? I admire your strength and courage so much (even when you think you aren't strong or courageous). You're incredible. As always, best vibes.

Hug,
Sheila

Steph H said...

Isn't it astonishing how much can change in a year? Next Friday will mark the one year anniversary of my BRCA year, and it's dizzying to imagine how different my life is -- and body, too, hello fake boobies! As always, thinking of you. XOXO

Anonymous said...

You've shown such courage through the last year, such an incredible woman, role model and writer.

notSupermum said...

What a year you've had, and what a woman you are. Best wishes as always from across the pond. xxx

Brenda said...

And sometimes you just hang on.

That year anniversary is a big one. Hang on and keep laughing.

Peaceful Lotus said...

Glad you are still here.

It's not easy, but you did what you had to.

You are a survivor!

hastyfar from VB

The Small Fabric Of My Life said...

I was thinking of you this morning and thinking it was about a year ago since you heard the news. Yes it is the worst year of your life but it's behind you now. Keep laughing and loving.

Imogen Lamport, AICI CIP said...

How great that a year later you have such a positive perspective (even though you may not see it right now, it comes out in your writing).

As they say, what does not kill us only makes us stronger, and that can only be good for you and your family.

Lesa said...

A year is a long time, you have been so very strong throughout this one. Here's hoping the next one will be so much better.

Prayers,

Lesa

The Writing Instinct said...

In reading this post, your latest '1000 words each day' installment 'Loose Threads' came to mind. My hope for you is that this cancer saga, which has been a part of your life for this long, will suddenly snap away, neatly and evenly, no loose threads whatsoever and you become 100% healthy. Just. Like. That.
Love, as always
Mervat xo

La Belette Rouge said...

I remember when you were waiting for the results. Ever since then I have been in shock. I just can't believe all you have had endured and overcome. It doesn't seem possible that it has been a year. But I bet for you it feels a lot longer than a year.
As always, I send my love, hugs, and hope that soon this will all be a memory and you can get back to modeling for us. Much love,
Belette
xoxo