mainly sunny, mild, temps zero
Had great news at the doctors...we weren't worried but it's still good to get the 'all clear'...I'd had a mammogram in early January and it showed something odd, so they invited me back to get a clearer look, and while we were in Quebec City we got a call to say it still looked odd and we needed to take it to the next level - an ultrasound.
This, strangely, was the same week I heard A RULE AGAINST MURDER had made the New York Times Bestsellers list. I thought it was just like life...make the list and find out you have cancer all in the same week. Of course, this was FAR from finding out I had cancer...it was just something they couldn't explain. Between us? I think it was a gummi bear lodged in there...I do inhale them sometimes.
We decided to have the next set of tests done in Montreal - at that Victorian asylum known as the Royal Victoria Hospital. So an appointment was made at the Breast Cancer Clinic and off we went yesterday.
It was an amazing, very humbling experience. To see the men quietly waiting for their wives. One of the men took Michael in hand and showed him where to hang his coat, and the magazines, etc. I went into the back area and into a robe. And listened as a group of women talked across the aisle about what stage their cancer was at, whether it involved the glands, whether they'd had chemo, radiation, a radical mastectomy, lumpectomy... they spoke so matter-of-factly. Most were younger than me - one in her early 30's. The lump had been found a year earlier and dismissed by the physician as being nothing...she was so young and with no family history. A year later she was in pain, and was finally diagnosed. The woman next to me was diagnosed as she breast fed her latest baby.
It was so moving to hear them talking - so calmly. I guess that's natural. By now most were veterans of this war. No drama.
I wasn't worried...I'd be reassured it was almost certainly nothing...and the ultrasound confirmed that. Though they scheduled an MRI to be absolutely certain. Seems a waste of time to me, and resources...but seems they might know better than me.
Got home exhausted last night...wrote lots on the book today...very happy so far. The beginning of any book is always a bit tricky...introducing the characters, especially the new ones. I feel I need to spend the time to get it right. So that I feel them, and see them, and they become three dimensional. Such fun to actually 'create' people.
Saturday is International Women's Day and I get to celebrate it with a dinner in Knowlton in honour of three local writers...Sharon McCully, Laura Teasdale and Winona Matthews
I'm the guest speaker. And while I won't talk about my visit to the clinic - I felt like a fraud, a voyeur - I will take that feeling with me. Of women helping women. And outside, the men who love them helping each other too.
What a lovely world we live in. Not always fair, but almost always beautiful.