Monday, 24 January 2011

Breasts + Lumps = Scary Times

I want to talk breasts. Boobs. Jubblies. Whatever you call them, whatever shape or size they are we all have them. Yes, men too. I haven't had the best start to 2011, on January 2nd I was doing my weekly lump check after my Sunday soak in a bubble bath when the world stopped. What the *insert appropriate profanity here* was that?!?!?! I checked again and felt sick, there was an enormous lump in my right breast. I quickly felt my left breast for comparison, then checked my pill packet to see where I was in my cycle. Nope it was a lump, approximately the size of a toddler's fist. Shit. I had my husband, Lee, feel. He went very pale and quiet. We both feared the worst, as you do, but probably more so because we had watched his Dad fade away and die from bowel cancer 11 years ago. It was almost 11pm and too late to ring the Doctor's surgery to schedule an emergency appointment. I went to bed but didn't sleep much. Next morning I put on my 'Happy Mammy' face and got the kids ready for school. Once I was home I made an appointment, but for the following day to see the female GP. I ran my mother-in-law at work to ask her to collect my youngest from school as the timing clashed, I was shaky and upset. "I'm on my way" she simply said, walked out of work and came to look after me. When she arrived though she handed me the phone and told me I was going to see the doctor today, male or not... saying "no" was not an option. So, I rescheduled for that afternoon, surprisingly with the female GP and rang Lee to let him know. He also left work to come to the appointment with me. Well, I got prodded and squeezed while the GP had a good explore. She was very thorough and I was VERY relieved to hear she was 99% certain it wasn't cancerous. It was the wrong shape and mobile. What I most likely had was a fibroadenoma or breast mouse. I had to laugh, some of you will know what pets I keep - rats, this was a rodent obsession too far! As the lump was so large I had to return in 3 weeks for a recheck and to see if I needed referring for possible surgery to remove it. I almost made 3 weeks, I awoke on the 21st in agony, my boob and shoulder hurt and over the counter painkillers didn't give any relief, back to the doctor I went. This time I saw a male GP, I didn't care, common sense had kicked in and I knew they had seen many more boobs. He was very nice and gentle but still managed to make me cry, I was so tender! He then said he thought that the lump was, in fact, an infected cyst, prescribed strong antibiotics and painkillers. I took the tablets, the pain subsided slightly, but boy did I suffer that night! The Diclofenac gave me the WORST heartburn I have ever experienced, but only at night while I was trying to sleep, worse still was I couldn't take indigestion relief with it.... :(

Today I had the follow up appointment with the female GP, I went through the previous squishing and squeezing, but pain-free, and she looked happy. Well, happier. Once I was clothed she told me what she suspected. I have an infected cyst that had tracked up to my shoulder, the male GP had found a small squishy blob in my armpit, but knowing I was returning on the Monday hadn't told me so I wouldn't worry unnecessarily over the weekend. It had gone as he expected as it was simply infection and the antibiotics were working. The lump is also shrinking. Good news. I am to carry on with the medication until the course is finished and return for another check up on February 21st. Then the Doctor and I will make a decision over the findings - if it had gone, good; If it is shrinking, perhaps a longer course of antibiotics; If it is no different, maybe surgery. I am still being referred to the breast clinic for a scan and probable biopsy, but I'm much more positive about the outcome now.

So I guess what I'm trying to do by sharing this tale of woe with you is to encourage you to check yourself. Now if you can. I check regularly and still missed this lump. Men can get breast cancer so they should check themselves too. Don't take chances with your health and if you do find anything, try not to panic and get it checked out as soon as possible - it may be nothing, but it may be something. No risks please friends, do this for me.

Sea and Cakes

Now as you may or may not know, I love to bead and make jewellery. My beading group, Darlington Bead Group, has been asked to participate in a 'cake party' while we have our monthly meet up to raise money for the RNLI. This has been organised by Beads Unlimited and information can be found here if you would like to join in and help raise money for a really good cause.

What better excuse for cake? Go on, you know you want to...

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

A Rainy Day Musing

I found the following last night while flicking through my story idea notepad. I wrote it in the summer of 2010 while my beloved dog Lucy was still with us, so that is the dog referred to, not Ruby Random, our new pooch.

What is it about rain that can make you both happy and sad at the same time? Take yesterday for example... There I was, ironing quietly thinking it was about time the dog had a walk when out of nowhere the rain thundered, and I mean thundered, against the windowpane. I rushed to look. There was so much water pouring down the glass I could only see blurred colours outside. The child I had once been danced with joy and wanted to grab wellies and a brolly and splash around. My grown-up self simply groaned with dismay at the thought of getting drenched and told the dog she had no chance. The dog just went back to sleep.

Jenny's Cute Store

Now as you may know, I am a penpaller, I currently have around 17 penpals and am always looking out for cute, non-boring stationery, especially hard to find in the UK for some reason... well my friends, I have found a FANTABULOUS little site with a great selection, good prices and amazingly fast delivery (I think she uses fairies... *nods knowingly*). I have spent all of my pocket money on some lovely pads and sets, okay, I spent Lee's money, and I will be going back for more.

Jenny's Cute Store is the name of this wonderland of papery goodness, I URGE, nay, ORDER you to go check her store out and see if you can resist the lure. You won't be disappointed, I promise. Jenny herself is very friendly and helpful, when a particular pad I wanted was out of stock it was no problem, Jenny emailed me when she had managed to get more stock.

Off you go then, don't be dawdling here any longer, Jenny's Cute Store is waiting....

Monday, 10 January 2011

Spoilt Rotten Beads

Take yourself off here: and buy yourself lots of beady goodness. They have a lovely range AND until January 15th 2011 there's 15% off! If you're new to beading, check out the fab tutorials. :)


Right, SRB, send me my voucher... ;D