|St. Agatha prayer card|
As I agonized over whether to have a lumpectomy or mastectomy, many, many people felt they must chime in about what they would do. I had originally decided to have a lumpectomy, but so many, many women said they would "take the whole thing" out. And, the more I looked at it, and the fact that I would have to have radiation therapy with a lumpectomy, I finally decided to have a mastectomy. Then when I finally made my decision, more women were telling me they wouldn't do that. Really?
|Martyrdom of St. Agatha|
The best part of the diagnosis though was that a friend of mine was prompted to have a mammogram done. She had been neglecting to go, like I had been. She, like me, had a biopsy done. She, unlike me however, had a tumor--full blown cancer. Hers actually was life-threatening. She needed surgery right away. She chose to have a lumpectomy, but she will have radiation and [Tamoxifen]. Her surgery was two days after mine and her prognosis is very good. They got the whole tumor.
|17(?)th c. image of St. Agatha, Patroness of Breast Cancer|
|Our Lady of Hope|
Please, if you have a friend to whom this happens, give her encouraging words, words of hope, words of support. Bite your tongue, and don't tell the death stories, not now, maybe later. She needs to have a positive attitude and plenty of positive words and actions to stay focused on getting well and staying well.
God has blessed me with dear friends and wonderful family. One friend had his whole rosary group (over 150) praying for me. My mother's church prayer group was praying for me. Everybody that knew me at my parish was praying for me. Their prayers and their support are what got me through this. I am not done yet. I have at least one more surgery to go through, but I am positive they'll be there for that, too. Praise the Lord!