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Handling the Fear Before Breast Cancer Surgery

Fear before Breast Cancer Surgery

November 29, 2013

Journal Dump #005

I am 10 days away from having double mastectomy surgery, scheduled for December 9th.

Since hearing the words 'you have breast cancer', I have done an absolutely fantastic job of keeping myself so busy that I can't even find time to sleep.  Not that I could sleep anyway, so I might as well keep busy.  I hosted my family Thanksgiving dinner and managed to feed them a fully cooked but not over cooked turkey, as well as ham.  (Thanks to Mom who showed up bright and early to help.)  So, between getting ready for Thanksgiving, and organizing every drawer in my house, along with cleaning the bathroom and kitchen floors with a toothbrush, I have managed to stay very occupied. 

Problem:  Thanksgiving is over and there isn't anything left to organize in my house.  Solution:  Christmas is coming!

So the weekend after Thanksgiving, my girlfriend and I shopped until complete exhaustion.  After 3 days, the shopping is complete, the gifts are wrapped, and the tree is up.  Now what?

With nothing left to do but think, the fear sets in.  Out of the blue, without even thinking about the cancer or the surgery, my heart begins to pound very hard and you can see it beating through my shirt.  My first thought as I look down is "will I be able to see my heart beat after they remove my breast and replace it with some kind of silicone filled plastic bag...?"  Second thought... is that it hurts and feels like I am having a heart attack. I can feel the heaviness in my chest, and the lump in my throat and it makes me hot and sweaty.  No rushing to the hospital because I know its just a random panic attack.  Not my first.  Let it pass, breathe easy, think happy thoughts, etc... 

My advice - call your 'person' if you have one... if not, call someone else.  Talk.  Talk about anything.



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