Thanks for touching!
On the first of October, after work, I went to the store because I missed a few things for Saturday's lunch. Although I have known for years and remembered the same day that it was the first day of the month of breast cancer awareness, I had an empty head until I walked past a shelf full of vegetables and spotted champignons in a pink box.
They are the most adored and most hated part of a woman's body. Women observe them in the mirror, tuck them into uncomfortable bras, pushing them upright above the chin, hide them in our teens, burden ourselves with their size, with the size of nipples, and complain over the pain every time we are just before the bloody end of the world. On the other hand, men would be more than excellent in the role of a personal checker. They are thrilled to see them in a tight-fitting T-shirt, even more so when we throw off our clothes. After deep sighs, drops of sweat, finally, the guy only manages to free them, men play with them, squeeze them, feel them. What am I talking about? I am talking about breasts, boobs, tits.
October is the month of breast cancer awareness and self-examination. Prevention is the most crucial step in detecting early changes. We girls had an introductory hour in checking our two bulges during an examination in the first year of college. Although tapping an artificial breast was fun, weird, and instructive at the same time, most of us forgot to self-examine after. Because our tits have to be examined every tenth day after the menstruation cycle and following the particular protocol, the matter is more complicated. But who has time for that every month? In winter and autumn, when it is cold, the thought of icy hands approaching your chest is repulsive. I thought so just after I first touched a fake breast, but a few years later, I changed my mind.
That's when my left breast started causing me panic attacks. Something on the left was bothering me. I first noticed this in that turbulent period before menstruation. My left side hurt more than usual, so much so that I couldn't sleep on my belly. I felt the lump with trembling fingers for the first time when I was soaking in the bath. It seemed huge to me. Not wanting to think about it and any problems it might bring, I dived under the water and gave up. Probably just a result of Aunt Flo's visit. Unfortunately, however, it did not disappear. I was losing myself in fear, and even during sex, I checked to see if it was there. I begged my boyfriend at the time to touch it, squeeze it, feel it.
My doctor is a specialist in arousing fear. So when I lay in front of her a month later, she felt not just one but several small bumps and urgently sent me for an examination at the Breast Health Center. Although the staff there managed to lower my blood pressure a bit, saying that we know several changes in the breasts and most of them are not cancerous, I was looking forward to the call about the biopsy result. Negative, not cancer. Since the bulge was supposed to disappear on its own, no surgery was not needed.
A year later, during a check-up, they found that the lump was not shrinking but growing, so they sent me on a trip to the Oncology. There I was able to see the horror and, at the same time, the will to live. After seven hours of waiting, ultrasound, and biopsy, I felt a little lighter going back home. I was hoping not to return to this building between life and death again.
But I did. To have surgery. I had never been so happy when the doctors gave me a sedative before they took me to the coldest place full of friendly people. I wasn't bothered by the horrible stories of the women lying next to me; I wasn't even bothered by the thought of surgery. A few hours later, when I woke up from a deep sleep in which I spoke Spanish with the nurses, I felt relieved. It turned out better than the cases of many women diagnosed with cancer.
Today, my hazelnuts are healthy, rarely does anyone even notice that I have a brand new border on the underside of my left nipple. Although it wasn't the worst thing that could happen to me, a small bump caused me much trouble. I was happy to learn the self-examination technique, and I started checking my breasts more diligently than before. I also buy champignons even if I don't plan them for lunch.