Almighty God blesses us so that we can be a blessing to others, our blessings is God’s favor expressed to you/me/us and through you/me/us to others to bring God the Glory. The Lord has placed it on my heart to share this and I pray that it will be of help and to uplift someone.
When I was faced with making the decision about my thyroid cancer, it was one of the hardest decisions I had to make, but I was certain I had to do it to survive, and I did just, I removed my thyroid and my parathyroid.
However, the wait and uncertainly when I found out I had a lump in my breast was much more difficult.
My life flashed before my eyes, I wanted to live, I wanted to be there for my family, grandchildren, and my husband. I imaged life without my breasts, a gland that had given (fed) life to 4 children,
and whether it’s loss would change me as a woman.
While we in the medical field presents decisions that appear cut and dried, based on clinical guidelines, medical and surgical outcomes, and prognosis (chance of survival, and longevity), we must remember WHOM is the greater HEALER (Matthews 9: 35).
Like many women, the thoughts of fairness entered by mind, why me? then the realization of how much I wanted life…I wanted to live, I wanted to be there for my family, grandchildren, and my husband.
As born nurturers, most women begin their journey thinking about their relationship with the ones they love, their families. If married, they think about their husbands and how this will affect their physical and emotional relationship. Their children, and those they consider family members. How will this diagnosis and the resulting surgery affect their way of life (job, ability to do the things they loved), will they be able to do all the things are now able to do?
The pain and healing process usually comes secondary to the above thoughts, mainly due to innovation in medicine that ensure healing of the physical body.
However, I wanted the best surgeon, who had history of the most successful surgical outcomes, I researched, checked the number of surgeries performed, the surgeon’s successes and outcomes, number of post-operative complications (swellings, infections, edema, thrombosis, and much more). After all, when I was buying my house and car, I did extensive homework, so much more I had to do for my body, my precious life. This was my temple to the living God, through Christ Jesus, and my duty is to care, and preserve it the best I could so that I would continue to glorify HIM (1 Corinthians 6: 19).
But, because we as women have been groomed by family and society to look and present ourselves in a certain way to the world, my thoughts drifted to vanity, I thought about how I would look, if this lump was malignant like by thyroid, would I have a lopsided chest, and if I had to have plastic surgery would it be symmetrical, I prayed that there would not be a problem with healing in my body? Would my clothes fit and how would I look in my clothes. How, much of a women will I be after the surgery, would the changes to my body effect the way my husband thought about me as a women, how would it influence our intimate encounters? These were just a few of the thoughts that I encountered in the process of making my decision a few years ago at Prisma.
As a mother there is much that is attached to our mammary glands, both personal, emotional, and societal (just look around you and see how women parade these glands). Men cannot imagine the depth of emotion and uncertainty a woman experience when faced with the removal of their organs of creation and sustenance (womb and breast). It is a journey that most woman in the western hemisphere makes on her own (in some societies this decision rest with the male head of the household).
For women who have a family history of cancers or who has been diagnosed with the Breast Cancer Genes (BRCA- 1 or 2), through genetic testing. The news can be devastating, as these genes are a pair of genes that when mutated can put a person at an elevated cancer risk if the cancer spreads to other areas of the body.
This news alone usually weighs heavily on a woman's conscious and subconscious pushing her to make the decision about what to do even more eminent.
These woman carries the burden of knowing that her diagnosis could be passed to her children, a reconning for the many women who will have to educate their offspring to ensure that their children and grandchildren are aware of their risk and begin cancer screenings at an even earlier age, than those without familial risk.
Although my tests came back negative, I spent weeks waiting for the results of scans, ultrasounds, and biopsy results, and during this wait period the information presents here were my thoughts. I share it so that others might appreciate the turmoil experienced by women who have had some form of breast surgery or have had a mastectomy (partial or total removal of the breast).
Even though we as Christian and children of the most high God Yahweh, we are humans, having all the frailties, uncertainties, and fears while living on this earth. So, I implore you all to keep the faith and believe in the impossible even in our uncertainties and through our fears (Matthews. 8:26), because we as Christians should know and accept without doubt (Matthews 14:31) the awesomeness of our Savior Christ Jesus.
Check out these links for more info;
The Health Ministry is in the process of planning for Breast cancer screening for men and women at MVBC and will keep you posted.
Director of Health Ministry
Mountain View Baptist Church
Greenville, South Carolina