Sunday, October 25, 2009

My Mom

Today is the 28th anniversary of my Mother's death. We always thought she died of multiple myeloma. After I was diagnosed with breast cancer almost every doctor I saw said that is highly unlikely. They said women of that age really don't get that. They asked where her primary bone sites were. When I tell them it was her arm and her neck they just shake their heads. They all say that it is much more likely that it was breast cancer that went to her bones. Which is, of course, where breast cancer goes.

I have a strong memory of her having a lump in her breast. I was about 14 or 15. She went to her OB/Gyn and he told her it was a clogged milk duct. She was so happy when she heard that because it eased her mind. She had nothing to worry about. She was dead a few years later. She never had a chance.

Things have changed a lot in 28 years. Treatment has progressed so much. I don't think a doctor would sent anyone with a suspicious lump away with no further checking. When I went I had a needle biopsy, mammogram, sonogram and core biopsy within a week. I don't think there was too much they could do back then to save you anyway, but I wish she would have had a shot.

So, I am not positive she died of breast cancer but I am 90% sure. This is from what all the doctors said plus research I did about both things. Her disease really did progress like untreated breast cancer. It also follows the timeline. It often occurs about two years after a pregnancy. It also takes about 7 or 8 years to kill you if you do nothing. My brother Richard, the baby, was 10 when she died.

This is interesting because up until I was diagnosed it never occurred to me that I had any increased risk. My Grandmother had it but she was over 70 when she was diagnosed. They say that isn't an increased risk for others. My first cousin also had it but she always thought her risk was from her Dad's side. She is BRCA+ and I am not, so maybe that is true.

Julianna and I went to the cemetery today. I was trying to get her to put flowers on my Mom's grave but she really didn't want to cooperate. First she took all the petals off one flower. Then she sat on the grave marker. After that she tried to take all the flowers off the other graves. Finally we got the flowers on there. RIP Mom.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing.
    I loved your Mom.
    I Love you.
    I love Julianna.