Post Archives tagged ‘breast cancer’



T&A at the TSA

Posted on: July 2nd, 2014 by
22

At the airport’s security check, I approach the body scanner with trepidation, knowing about the vow I took years ago: if confronted with such a machine, I would refuse a full body scan. After all, I’ve had my share of scans, thank you very much. I certainly don’t need one with the general voyeuristic public looking on. And I certainly don't want TSA and airport security employees seeing Continue reading the story "T&A at the TSA"

‘Oncologist’ Turned On a Dime

Posted on: May 15th, 2014 by
6

I judged him way before I met him. There I lay, on my sofa, swearing up and down that I would never, could never, ever see an oncologist. I was in limbo. My surgeon told me that day -- Almost-Botched Biopsy Day -- he was pretty sure I had breast cancer. Pretty sure, but not definitely sure. (Two days later, he Continue reading the story "‘Oncologist’ Turned On a Dime"

Go Back to Medical School, Dr. Death

Posted on: April 4th, 2014 by
19

My last post focused on the “little” lies people told me to encourage me when newly diagnosed with breast cancer. This post is about another lie, a whopper told by a second-opinion oncologist that threw me into a swirling inferno. The first oncologist I saw was cautiously optimistic that, with the right treatment, I had a decent prognosis. I felt somewhat reassured, but not completely, Continue reading the story "Go Back to Medical School, Dr. Death"

Family Matters

Posted on: January 9th, 2014 by
21

When first diagnosed with breast cancer, I felt a range of emotions including anger, terror, panic, sadness, grief — and the need to pray. But not in the way you might imagine. Rather than pray for my own life, my prayer went something like this: “Please don’t let anyone else in my family get cancer. Let it just be me.” Not pleading for my own Continue reading the story "Family Matters"

Virginia and Me

Posted on: October 18th, 2013 by
16

I’m lucky to have two of her art originals – one a beautiful photograph of a monarch butterfly she gave me on my birthday and the other her artistic rendering of alligators. One of my best friends, Virginia Pezalla, died from leukemia on November 6, 2012. **** We met as colleagues at our college. What started as a few shy smiles and nods of acknowledgment turned into something Continue reading the story "Virginia and Me"

Secrets and Lies

Posted on: September 27th, 2013 by
7

When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I became a stigma. After finding out about my diagnosis, my mom’s first words to me were “Don’t tell anyone.” I cried, telling her I needed to talk to people about this. Her response was, “Nobody needs to know about it. Don’t tell our family or your friends. They will tell everyone about that “thing” you have.” My Continue reading the story "Secrets and Lies"

How Do I Distrust? Let Me Count the Ways….

Posted on: August 1st, 2013 by
27

As is the case for many people affected by breast cancer, this disease has claimed my trust. I don’t entirely trust my body. It has betrayed me and can betray me again. I sometimes reside in hell, where aches and pains and the scary results of a bone scan assail me with fears of recurrence. Prior to cancer I believed if I ate healthy foods Continue reading the story "How Do I Distrust? Let Me Count the Ways…."

Cancer as Dictator

Posted on: July 23rd, 2013 by
6

This piece is based on my diagnosis and treatment years ago. One of the issues people with a serious illness face is that feeling of life spinning out of control. To this day, I have control issues, especially when seeing my doctors, and it stems from my breast cancer experience. “You will see the oncologist on this date,” my chemo nurse politely tells me. “But I have Continue reading the story "Cancer as Dictator"

Menagerie Mondays: Naked

Posted on: July 1st, 2013 by
2

The post is already written; all that's missing is artwork. Shown here is a first draft of a nude that will complement that post. This is one of the models whom I sketched with pencil in art class years ago. Now I'm trying to bring her to life -- to convey what I want to say -- with oil paints. 20130701_121246Continue reading the story "Menagerie Mondays: Naked"

Book Review: Third Time Lucky: A Creative Recovery

Posted on: June 12th, 2013 by
9

Third Time Lucky I've just been on a magnificent adventure. And I didn’t even have to leave home. I traveled through Pasha Hogan’s inspirational journey in her beautifully written memoir Third Time Lucky: A Creative Recovery. This book covers the author's experience with being diagnosed with breast cancer three times by the time she was 31. Pasha captures Continue reading the story "Book Review: Third Time Lucky: A Creative Recovery"