I wouldn't want to keep anyone in suspense about my biopsy results. Got the call this morning that it was just a benign cyst, so all is well. Thanks to everyone who reached out to me on this blog and through email. Your kind thoughts have been much appreciated.
Since my last blog post I've traveled to Ohio and New York, played two concerts, and been featured on local TV, so lots to write about when I finally find a minute. In the meantime, for those who are curious, I can describe the biopsy a little.
Everything ran smoothly and on time. Just as I described before, everyone was nice, everyone was pleasant, it's just still not any fun. I really didn't feel like making small talk or trying to carry on a conversation of any sort, and they seemed to understand that and not push anything.
I was in the same room as before where they did the ultrasound. I had to lie on my side on the exam table while one woman worked the ultrasound machine, another attended to me and made sure I didn't move my arm at the wrong time, and the doctor applied a numbing agent and then apparently went in with a needle to remove samples. Every time she took another sample the machine would make a disconcerting snapping sound, sort of like a stapler.
They offered me a towel to put over my eyes which I accepted. I don't think of myself as squeamish, but I can't predict my physical reaction to seeing something like that happening to my own body. I remember the last time I got stitches I talked to the doctor about how odd it was that I felt fine until I took a good look at the gash in my thumb and then I got dizzy. He told me only in Western culture do people try to deny that mind-body connection. So I would have been interested to watch part of the procedure, but didn't want to risk that my body would have had different ideas and make things more difficult. Better just to use the towel.
The whole thing lasted maybe an hour, including the mammogram afterward. They inserted some sort of "clip" in order to track the spot where they took the samples, and the mammogram was to make sure they could see it well enough. They assured me the clip was very small and would not be enough to cause problems in an MRI or an airport metal detector, but I'm disturbed that it's there.
They sent me home with an ice pack in my bra and instructions not to use any pain medication other than Tylenol, and not to exercise or do heavy lifting for about four days. I still have some writing in marker on my breast that will take a while to scrub off. I removed the big bandage today. I was supposed to keep putting ice packs on every other hour, and they didn't like the sound of my going to rehearsal last night, but I just really wanted to get back to my life. Tylenol has no effect on me, and ice sounded more annoying than simply being a little sore. Playing viola didn't seem to aggravate anything, thankfully. But I was really, really tired when I finally got home and crawled in bed. It was a day I was glad to have behind me. With a little luck I won't have to repeat the experience anytime soon.
Let's see, in other medical news (if you're interested), I finally got my blood results back from my physical, and my cholesterol numbers are all good. Which means my change in diet did make a difference I don't need to take any pills. Nice to know all that sacrifice has been worth it, and now I have incentive to keep it up.
In any case, thanks again for everyone's concern. I'm good, it's all good, and I will buckle down and get my Easter pictures up before the month is over. I'm looking forward to posting cute pictures of my kids instead of waiting and worrying. (But thanks for worrying with me. Let's move on!)