Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Almost done?

I'm coming to the end of my treatment and I don't quite know how to feel. I've had my mastectomy, finished chemo, and only have two radiation sessions to go, but I'll continue my Herceptin infusion every three weeks till April, followed by my reconstructive surgery at some point. Once radiation is over, there's no final scan, no last check to make sure I really am cancer free. There are apparently physical checks that I will have to continue, as well as check ups with my surgeon and oncologists every few months, but nothing to really mark the end of all this. I had cancer. It was removed when I had my mastectomy. The rest of my treatment has been a preventative measure. But even though I have explained this to family and friends plenty of times over these last eight months, I don't feel like I can definitively say I HAD cancer yet. My surgery felt like the beginning of my cancer journey, not the end. 

Last week I met with a Clinical Geneticist to discuss and carry out genetic testing to see if I have the breast cancer (BRCA1/2) genes. I was lucky enough to qualify for funding due to my age so I didn't have to pay the $2500+ for the testing, which was a relief. The results take three to four months to arrive. If I do have either gene I will have a higher risk of recurrent Breast Cancer and Ovarian/Fallopian Tube Cancer, so it is recomended that i have further risk-reducing surgeries. I'm obviously hoping the results will come back negative and maybe then I will feel confident saying I HAD cancer.

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