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  • Writer's pictureMicheline Lemay

To the biopsy I go…

Updated: Jun 24, 2021

I tried not to freak out. Deep breaths. I was sitting in the Copley parking lot in my van in a full sweat. Ok, ok this is fine - it’s gotta be a benign lump, how could I have cancer? I have never felt healthier in my entire life!

I know I have to call Igor and tell him, before I get the courage to do it I hear the rings coming through the mindful mobiles speakers… Igor, Igor, igor. I press the green button. “How was it he asks?” “Well they do want me to get a biopsy because they said it has some suspicious properties.” “Oh great“ he says. “I’m gonna call a friend and get you into UVM for the biopsy.“ Ok, ok, ok… “Igor please take a deep breath. They told me they are going to call up there and send the results, etc… please stop overreacting and freaking me out! I can’t talk right now. I just want to listen to some music.” I press the red button on the screen with force like you would if you could slam a phone down. I put on some Grateful Dead and zone out.

By the time I got home I basically had an appointment scheduled with the Breast Care Center team at UVM. Sometimes Igor’s intensity really pays off. Thanks Igor. I think waiting for information is the hardest part of this process. It really can make your head spin out of control. I am so grateful to Dr. Pete for getting us connected so quickly up at UVM 🙏🏻.

Taking care of my sweet girl was my focus now that I pulled in the driveway. Time to put my worry’s to the side. Day 2 after an injury is always the worst with pain and that realization that you are stuck with this situation for a while now has sunk in. Such a tough lesson in patience and understanding. I get her a fresh ice pack and get all the different doses of meds lined up and some snacks. I just layed next to her and watched a movie.

By the afternoon I had my appointment scheduled to go up for the biopsy. I had to print and fill out all sorts of paperwork and family history information. Of course I knew nothing so now I had to get my mom involved. I really didn’t want her to have to take on unnecessary worry but she is the only one who knows all these details. Of course she assured me that there was a high possibility that this is benign and I’ll be fine but jeepers creepers we have had a fair amount of hormonal cancers in our family.

That night as I tried to fall asleep I felt the anxiousness creeping in. The game we play in our heads of it’s nothing/what if I have cancer, it’s nothing/what if I have cancer. Is the biopsy going to hurt? I was still sleeping on the floor next to Sofi - since she is sleeping, I better take advantage of the window, so I put on one of my sleep meditations and drifted off to slumberville.

The appointment wasn’t until 2pm so I had plenty of time to get Sofi all set with breakfast, meds, dressing and squeak in a ride. Man there’s nothing like a few intense life events to make you appreciate a quick adrenaline filled MTB ride. Even a quick 45min can get the job done.

As I got home things were as usual Sofi resting as comfortably as she could on the couch and Igor was pacing the driveway on his phone. As long as I had the PK Coffee egg sandwich for Sof and my almond milk latte all was good in the world.

It was hard to hide all this from Sofi as she was at home the whole time. I was trying to be discreet and talk in code but she obviously had caught on to my energy. “Mom, where are going? Why do you need to go to the doctor again?“. “Don’t worry Sof, they just have to check something. I’m totally fine.“ I double check the med schedule- get her all situated and heade out the door.

I love my mindful mobile. It’s one of my peaceful zones. Listening to Grateful Dead Radio. Windows down. Zen. As I pull onto I- 89 I see a call come in from my lifelong pal. “Hey, Mich, what are doing?” Well… it just starts rolling out… “What the heck Mich!?“ I hear a crack in her voice and some reassurance that this is standard procedure and most times it’s fine. “Can I come meet you?” “No I’m totally fine, it’s fine.” We have a nice conversation until I pull into the parking garage and realize the Mindful Mobile is not going to fit. Back to a full sweat, causing a scene backing and turning on the ramp. Classic.

I get into the exam room. Meet the doctor and the student who is just about to graduate from breast surgery school (I’m obviously not sure what it’s called) but on top of regular med school and residency - this was a six year program. Dang- that is amazing- so inspirational. They explain what they are going to do- they preform another ultrasound- and we laugh how big the instrument is that is needed to get the biopsy. Back to a flop sweat. After a local anesthetic the instrument goes in. I can feel the blood running down my back, but the doctor is calm and steady and gets the two samples. Ok- that was fine. Of course after the procedure my first question was… when can I ride my bike? Then… when will the results come in? He said that it usually takes 3-5 business days. Ok…. This might be the toughest wait…

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