I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about CDH1, HDGC and lobular breast cancer on a daily basis. I try to keep telling myself that I am no different then I was on Dec 5th, 2013, but it is a difficult thing to wipe right out of your mind. I feel like I run through Kubler-Ross’ Model of five stages of grief on a daily basis. In case you can’t remember back to your psych 101 class here they are again.
Denial happened mostly when mom got her diagnosis and when I learned that I could have a 50/50 chance of inheriting the gene. I realize this after getting my diagnosis. I think I didn’t get tested for so long because I believed I was negative. I still believed I would be negative while waiting for the results. I did prepare myself mentally for a positive result but there was always that hope that I didn’t inherit the mutation. I also didn’t realize how the knowledge could change the way you look at things in your life.
Anger, so far, has only happened the weekend after I got the diagnosis when I was participating in a spin class (which made the work out that much better – boy did I turn that bike dial up). It lasted maybe 5 minutes. I don’t think I am really capable of being really angry. I’m just not that kind of person. Not to mention the music was really pumping in that class and my endorphins were running pretty high.
Bargaining happens a lot – do I need to do this surgery now? Maybe I won’t get the cancer? What if they remove my stomach and there isn’t any cancer there? If I remove my stomach, I won’t have to worry about getting fat. There are a lot of things that I think about. I ask myself the same questions a lot and the answers are always different. Haha. I’m not a very decisive person when it comes to myself.
Depression – I haven’t hit this stage and I hope I never do.
Acceptance – This is why I decided to write this post. Over the holiday, I saw a lot of my family and friends who had many questions but were also EXTREMELY supportive and uplifting. There is not a day that goes past where I am so thankful to have such great people in my life. I’ve realized that talking about this diagnosis and my future without a stomach has really helped me accept what is going to happen. Thank you all for listening to my rants and raves about this gene mutation. I feel very lucky to have this choice and be able to stop this cancer before it stops me!
Dec 31st, 2013 was one of the best New Years I have had surrounded by friends and family. 2013 may have ended with some unfortunate news but 2014 will bring much more adventure and awesome into my life.