I’m Ready For My Close-Up Annie

So the good news is I don’t have breast cancer!  The bad news is that it looked like it might have come back, so I had to have a biopsy last week and wait 6 endless days for the results.  Ugh.  Thank goodness it was good news.  My first, and only other biopsy in November 2009 didn’t end well at all. 

My first biopsy was an ultrasound guided needle, quick and relatively painless, except for the call I got two days later giving me the bad news.  I guess over the last few years someone has made it their business to cook up a darker, more ridiculous biopsy process…just for me.  Not to be paranoid or anything.

So this time around, I had to get something called a stereotactic needle biopsy, or as I like to call it, stereo-tastic!   There was a table with a big hole cut out of it.  You can’t fool me twice-after going through breast cancer I know what that’s about.  But get a load of this-as if dropping my breast through the hole isn’t awkward enough guess what’s waiting beneath the table?  A freakin’ mammogram machine thingymabob.  You heard me correctly.  I dropped my breast into a vise under the table.

OK, but I was still breathing.  That’s when they tightened the vise and told me I had to hold absolutely still.  For about 40 minutes.  Just in case I tried any funny business (like breathing) a nurse stood over me and held me down the whole time.  Then they  went in with a needle and pulled out samples while taking a ton of pictures.  I’m very photogenic and I was flattered to see that the doctor agreed.  I peered under the table and sure enough, there was Annie Leibovitz with her Nikon.  I was relieved that the photos would be artistic and tasteful, and that she takes insurance these days.

The problem is that I had already crossed biopsy and breast cancer off my bucket list.  So we were really wasting a lot of quality time that I could be spending on other items on my bucket list, like breaking my pinky finger or something.

And not to be a complete whiner, but my plastic surgeon spent kind of a long time reconstructing breasts for me 3 years ago.  He’s sort of a perfectionist.  And now, a little chink has been cut out of one of them, and if he finds out, things could turn ugly.  After my surgery I promised him I would not let anyone chisel anything out of my boobs.

So the good news is I don’t have breast cancer!  Also, I think Stereo-Tastic! would be a great name for a band.

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4 Responses to I’m Ready For My Close-Up Annie

  1. Kate says:

    Yay! I too am a breast cancer survivor. I am 10 years out but I remember vividly the biopsy. I called it Chinese torture. I had a new radiologist and it took forever! It hurt too! I had to have a biopsy 3 years ago but my surgeon did it with me right side up and only a few pokes. All was ok then but we had another episode earlier this year. Fortunately we cleared that one up with a PET scan. Will it never end???? I am so glad you are ok. I don’t want anyone to go through all those treatments and of course I don’t want your perfect boobs ruined!

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      The stuff they come up with is crazy, right? I’m so glad I’m OK and you’re OK, and I have to admit I am grateful they have this stuff. I always remind myself it’s better than the alternative…

  2. mimijk says:

    I’m just celebrating that you’re ok…though I agree that Stereo-Tastic has a late night infomercial ring to it that is very intriguing..

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      Geez, now I’m wondering if there was a Ronco Stereo-Tastic in the 70s. It sounds so familiar…like it came with a set of Ginsu Knives.

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