Friday, July 25, 2008


Every time the phone rings and my caller ID says it's my doctor's office, I cringe a little.

I had a mammogram on Wednesday. Because it is my first, and they are trying to establish a baseline, I was warned that I may get called back for more images or different tests, but that it does not necessarily mean they have found something wrong.

So when I got the call yesterday afternoon, I was calm and collected. I understood. But shortly after I hung up, fear and worry started to creep up.

"Abnormal densities" is not a phrase you want to hear uttered in reference to your breasts.

So now I have two more tests I have to make, an ultrasound and something about spot compression.

I called my mom almost in tears. She told me not to worry, that sometimes if your breast tissue is dense it makes it hard for them to search for possible cancer, so they like to do more tests to understand what is there. She had to do this years ago, because she was told one of her breasts was dense. And it wasn't even the one where she ended up developing cancer. She reassured me everything will be alright. But will it? Am I worrying too much, should I just chill out?

My mortality, the fragility of my body, are painfully obvious these days. I am only 39, yet I feel so old. I am 55 lbs. overweight and it's hard to lose the excess pounds. I am pre-diabetic, my estrogen levels are on the floor and my damn heel hurts all the time. I am trying to make changes, to eat right and to exercise. But is it too little, too late? Am I doomed? Should I even bother?


  1. i know exactly what you're going thru ingrid because i went thru the same thing when i got my first mammo. like you, i cried much thinking the worst and, in the end, it turned out to be nothing. i would try not to worry too much, and i know it's easier said than done, but they just need to do all of the necessary tests to make sure they have everything.

    give up? absolutely not! like you, i am also overweight (30 lbs. and climbing), prediabetic, etc. reading your post i felt like i was reading a page out of my life.

    within the last few months i've begun a complete overhaul on my health. it's been work because it's taking a lot of food combinations for me to figure out what gives me the proper amount of energy, etc. i wish i could become a vegetarian because of all the health benefits but my body will not sustain such a diet (i've already tried and every time i become very weak). i am a reactive hypoglycemic and also have heart disease. oy! i started another blog The Physical Heart just a month ago as a form of journal/journey into all things health that would help me and others in the road to a healthy life. drop in every now and again to see if i have any posts that might help or interest you.

    wishing you the best,

  2. Thank you, Rebecca. It helps to know I am not alone and that the need for additional images should not be cause for serious concern.

    Like you, I do not think I could be a complete vegetarian. I can get away with not eating meat for a day or two, but I must have cheese or an egg in those cases.

    A big change for us (my husband and I) is eating breakfast and eating vegetables every day. We were not eating enough greens, and even though we would eat them if they were served to us, left to our own devices we did not seek them. Not anymore. We are now having greens every day, from fresh baby spinach to green beans to broccoli. Now I just need to convince the kids to go along with it.

    I wish you much success in your overhaul. I will be sure to pay a visit to your new blog.

  3. It's never too late. My mother just went from a size 1X to a size 10 and she is 60. She did it to get healthy again too. It took her a year on weight watchers because she did it the RIGHT WAY.

    There are no quick fixes. You just have to keep at it.

    I bet a lot of what you are going through / feeling is pre-menapausal. Thats probably why you have been having those ups and downs too?

    I dont know. But...I am here for you, routing for you. Always.

  4. Ingrid:

    A mí me hicieron un spot compression también cuando salieron los resultados de mi primera mamografía. Es un poco fastidioso porque quieren ver particularmente la parte donde aparece la lesión, así que te aprietan bastante como con una taza (digo, eso fue lo que me pareció a mí). Pero no nada como para que te asustes. Finalmente tengo unos quistecitos pequeños que no son peligrosos y la recomendación médica que me dieron fue hacerme la mamografía y sonomamografía anualmente para vigilar que no crezcan. Y así he hecho ya por 3 años. Por otro lado, yo tengo un problema de obesidad mórbida y por supuesto que eso trae como consecuencia muchas posibilidades de problemas de salud. Desde abril comencé a vigilar las porciones que como y he logrado bajar 30 libras. Todavía me faltan 80, pero ahí voy poco a poco, de una en una, de dos en dos. Vas a lograrlo. Ya lo verás.

    Mis mejores deseos para ti.


  5. Gracias, Enid. Ya me tocará contar cómo me va. Tengo la cita para el próximo miércoles.

    Muchas felicidades por lo que estás haciendo. Perder 30 libras es un gran logro. Me inspiras a seguir adelante y no quejarme. Muchos abrazos.

  6. Thanks for the words of encouragement, Meleah. I appreciate them a lot.

    I need to be patient and not expect changes overnight. It is hard to make a good habit, to unlearn so many bad behaviors that are engrained.

  7. Hugs, sweetie! I work with someone who also has the same issue everytime she gets a mammogram. She is now prepared for those phone calls, each year, right after her annual exam.

    I hear you with the being young but feeling old! I'm only 41 but I too carry excess weight and have a couple of health issues that don't add to my feeling of overall vitality. Sometimes it just seems like such a huge undertaking to get myself back on track that I can feel overwhelmed. But they say (and I truly want to believe them) that it's never too late to start living a healthier life.

    I'm thinking in terms of one hour at a time, instead of a whole day at a time. I think it's easier to tackle that way.

    Sending you happy thoughts and support :)

  8. exactly. Just be patient and stick with it.


  9. Thanks, Bea and Meleah. Today I went to the "gutts and butts" class at the gym at work, and I felt like such a cow next to everybody else. I have to remind myself that I am just getting started, and that patience will bring its rewards. It's hard, though.