Thursday, May 12, 2011
Today I went for my routine mammogram and as I had my husband with me we sat in the men's area. Next to my husband was a man, perhaps in his early sixty's that was sent in for a what he thought would be a test and the next thing he was waiting to see the surgeon. He had arrived, on his own, as he had traveled for several hours to get to the Breast Clinic never expecting this outcome.
He seemed alone, afraid, and totally out of his depth in what one could only describe from the surroundings as 'secret woman's business'. For women in the clinic it's full of lovely smiling volunteers, guiding you through every step of the way, but this gentle man had arrived on an alien plant, and was left not sure which way to turn wishing that he had has wife with him.
He said "I thought you had to have 'man boobs' to get this sort of thing"? We didn't even know what to say to this man. I piped up and said well Tom Cruise had it. Not sure that was any consolation to him, but what do you say. Breast cancer is pink & ribbons and teddy bears, not 60 year old men. He said that this will be some story to tell at the pub.
My heart sank for him. I wanted to go back and hold his hand and sit with him during his consultation with the surgeon because bet you anything his wife does all that stuff!
It is rare but possible. I came across this article "Bearded lady who slew a cancer dragon"
For more info if your interested Breast Cancer Network Australia This is the link to male breast cancer. I have learn something new today.
I also looked around the room at all the women in their surgical gowns and I was wondering which one of us will be the 1 in 8. Who's life is going to change forever today. I lost my very best friend to breast cancer, my aunt has just return homed an hour ago after more surgery and will start chemo, radiation and will wake up tomorrow to a new normal. That's how I felt when I was diagnosed with with a life changing illness. Still I feel like the lucky one.