Tuesday, October 16, 2007

boobs "r" us

Ah, yes. The long awaited day is finally here. It's Mammogram time. And I'm so excited that I can barely see straight.


I don't really mind the flat iron action. I don't even really find it to be particularly painful. Uncomfortable, yes. But it's fast and without fail the people performing them are soothing and respectful and no one has laughed at my boobs yet. Not that I've caught, anyway. There are surely mammogram nazis out there, but I've been lucky enough to avoid them so far. Hopefully, my streak will extend through this one.

What I mind is the fear factor. Surely I've said this a (thousand) times before, but I have an obnoxiously loud hypochondriac living in my head and sharing space with a worrywart. It's an ugly combination. Add in my healthy dread of "routine tests" and it's an all-around fun fest.

My mother in law was diagnosed with breast cancer last year. My sister in law and another good friend both had scares. The fact that I work in medicine doesn't spare me the fear - in some ways I think it allows me to psych myself out more. "Why is she looking at me that way? Oh my god, there's something bad there." vs. "Why isn't she even looking at me? Oh my god, there's something bad there." I can even work up a good argument for "Why is she smiling at me so nicely? Oh my god, she feels sorry for me because there's something bad there."

You see my dilemma?

But I'm going anyway. I will be mammogrammed. Even though I'm perfectly content to live in the state of Denial, I know it's a bad state to be from. I will suck it up and wait it out for my results and I will not whine or gnash my teeth.

Hey, I know what I'll do to take my mind off of it. I'll catch up on all my blogs that I have been sadly neglecting for the last three days. Between work and kids on the computer, I've been a slacker. But not a deliberate slacker. More like an enforced one. So protect your comments boxes because here I come.

Consider yourselves warned. And password protect while you still can.


ciara said...

i recently had the boobysquishogram earlier this year because i turned 40 in nov last year. i, too, had the fears...ppl telling me that it hurts or they've HEARD that it hurts. that coupled with the fact that my x has always said i was a hypochondriac because i just KNEW something was worng w me(that's how i finally got to the bottom of the thyroid disease). i guess in some ways i am because the minute a get a symptom resembling some type of disease i just KNOW that is what i have...usually just turns out to be another lovely symptom of my thyroid lol

Corey~living and loving said...

I'll be thinking of you! I've only had one of these....and only of one boob. I try to pretend that one boob isn't floppier than the other now...but I am just kidding myself.
Good luck! :)

Potty Mummy said...

Good luck. A mammogram is waiting in my future due to family history - just can't wait!

PixelPi said...

RC: I've had so many (I'm overdue now for this year's) that it's pretty much a yawner, except for the actual squishing part. I still find that what medical people call "uncomfortable" is what I call "get my boob out of this vise before I bite someone."

Nevertheless, I look at it as a good thing. Even if it's "OMG, there's something there," there's also "OMG, they'll probably be able to fix it." You'll be great. As long as the mammogram lady doesn't come into the ER this week.

Flowerpot said...

that treat is yet to come for me - over here we dont have them until we're 50. But so many of my friends have had bad experiences. Over the pond ou're obviously better at it! Take care and hope all goes well.

Jo Beaufoix said...

RC I'll be thinking of you, though I won't be ironing my boobs in sympathy ok?

I kind of wish we had them sooner in the UK as I have that hypochondriac gene. (Hmmm think I might have spelt the h word wrong. Do you think that means I'm ill??)

Big hugs, and I will come and hold your hand if you send me the plane tickets.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

I won't be getting my first mammogram for another couple of years. They start them at 50 here, as flowerpot said. Good luck. Tell us how it turns out.

auntie barbie said...

My first mammogram at age 35 ended in a lumpectomy. Mammograms are nothing just ask about needling, ugh! Not only do I get “squished” every year I also get ultrasounds, which I find much more uncomfortable.
Anyways, good for you for making your regular appointment and taking care of yourself. So many other don’t and wait until its too late.

auntie barbie said...


LOL, Boobs "r" Us, sounds like a low budget porn movie.

Kaycie said...

I'll be 41 in January and still haven't had my first mammogram. It's that procrastination thing. That and the fact that I just don't want to get one. Well, also, the move. I haven't found an ob/gyn here. Every time my husband remembers I am 40, we have a fight about it because I haven't gone. Next time I am going to tell him that I am following the UK guidelines. ;)

ped crossing said...

Don't make it sound like so much fun. Some of us have been promised that we get to have one this year. Happy, happy, joy, joy.

Hope you get the all clear.

laurie said...

well, good for you for doing it, especially with your fears. better to know than not know.

and no one has laughed yet? ha! you haven't lived until you've stood there in the chilly mammogram room, wearing that nasty white gown, and heard a tech say to you, "wow! one of them is smaller than the other!"

i coulda killed her.

i have been obsessed ever since, trying to figure out which one is smaller! and i still can't tell!!!

(i'm afraid to ask my husband.)

laurie said...

...and another time a tech threw a towel at me, snapping, "you're wearing deodorant!"

that was my first mammo, which i was having because my sister had been diagnosed, and i was very upset and nobody had told me not to wear deodorant.

i coulda killed that tech, too.

Iota said...

Well your pain has been my gain, Rotten Corres. I've been here in the little ol' US of A thinking "everyone seems to go on about mammograms here, I wonder why? I thought they were for older ladies..." Through your comments section (thank you gals) I've discovered that in the UK they start doing them at 50 and here it's 40. This means I have a choice. I could pretend to be wedded to the British system for lots of obscure reasons, or I could think wow, aren't I lucky to have the option to get checked out 10 years earlier than the NHS lets me (um, it's not quite 10 for me any more). I've also learnt that you have to remember not to put on deodorant.

There's the fear factor, yes, but we all know that the sooner you find something, the better your chances. One day they'll find out that the worry of routine testing is more likely to kill you over time than the diseases they are hoping to catch, but until that day, I'm going to go and have those tests.

Altaglow said...

This is a very serious subject and I'm glad you addressed it.

On a lighter note I ABSOLUTELY LOVE your artwork selections!! Today's is particularly memorable.

Diana said...

Happy boob squishing. I wish you nothing but normals your whole life long.

That's the worst part about these screenng tests: the stress a false positive puts you through. Guess that'd be better than finding out that it's a false negative, though.

Greaaaaaaat. I've just given your inner hypochondriac something else to obsess about.

Some friend I am.

Akelamalu said...

I don't like them either but I love it when the result comes through CLEAR! Good luck honey. x

Kimberly said...

I've got the same situation going on in my head. And I worry that because I'm "too young" for the test, that of course I'll get it but it won't be caught in time. Comes from my mum having severe thyroid problems that lead to her having half her thyroid removed. No doctor caught the problem (despite the huge goiter growing out the side of her neck!), because she was "too young" to have thyroid issues. Bleh!

Loooove the comic!

ciara said...

kimberly-i know all about not having the issues of thyroid disease being caught early. i still have my thyroid though it's totally useless lol

The Rotten Correspondent said...

well, it's done. should have results in the next day or so. whee...thanks for all the good thoughts, ladies.

ciara - see, I don't really think they hurt that much. squishy, yes.

corey~living and loving - welcome! wow. they only did one? that must have been fun!

potty mummy - they honest to god aren't that bad. truly. it's just strange to put your boob in a vise.

pixlepi- I know you're right and that if something is there it's better to catch it quick. but still...I'm really a weenie.

flowerpot - really? 50? another reason to move there!

jo - you're a hypochondriac too? and thanks for not ironing your boobs. I'd feel really bad if one got singed.

wakeup - why is it 50 there and 40 here? some doctors here say 35 for baseline.that's a big difference.

auntie barbie - jeez, that's scary. a lumpectomy the first time out? I'm assuming everything has been fine since?

kaycie - I understand the procrastination thing. I was several months overdue. it's just the kind of thing you want to put off.

ped crossing - this year as in before December or this year as in the next twelve months? honest, they really aren't that bad, they're just nerve wracking.

laurie - and you didn't knock the tech into the next time zone? why? and by the way, if it was that glaring, I think doug might have mentioned it by now.

iota - absolutely right. it's the stress involved in routine testing that's going to do us all in. it's awful.

altaglow - isn't she cute with her little pancake boobs?

diana - yeah,thanks for that thought. my inner hypochondriac just went back to the state of DeNial.

akela - and that's what makes it all worth it, isn't it? fingers crossed.

kimberly - if you're really worried, I'm pretty sure that you can have a baseline done at any age. but I think they're more effective when you have "saggy 40" tissue. how's that for a nice thought??

elle said...

I'm glad to hear the squishin went smoothly. I find that both my inner hypochondriac and my worrywort start to grow bigger and bigger the more overdue I am. I think the waiting for results part is worse than the squishin part anyway. I hope you get your results back quickly and that everything comes back clear for you.