Linda’s cancer story
All my adult life, I have feared breast cancer, which makes this situation quite ironic. We don’t have breast cancer in the family, so my fear has not been logical at all. Still, it has always gnawed on me, which has made me check my breasts regularly.
I was sitting in a Teams-meeting when I first discovered a lump. I froze in panic, but since I had been at the doctor’s office to examine a lump earlier, I heard their voice in my head: ‘just wait and let your hormonal cycle do its thing before you do anything.’ So, I waited. A few weeks later, the lump was gone, and I let out a sigh of relief. But then it showed up again, this time in another place… But cancer doesn’t move around, I thought, and put it all down to that my body probably was transitioning into menopause and had started to do its own thing. The inevitable destiny of a woman.
Then the breast started to swell again, and I was called in for mammography. But I rescheduled my appointment. The new calling came immediately, and they wanted more mammography-images, ultrasound and biopsies… The doctor was very clear; ‘Whatever this is Linda, we are removing it.’
I was laying on the examining table with a protective mask that almost covered my eyes, and I was crying. The fear hit me hard. ‘You have been taking tests everywhere, so if you are removing it, you have to take the whole breast?’ His answer was as clear as it in hindsight was true: ‘Yes, that might be the case.’
Just five days later (the longest days of my life) I got a call from Bröstcentrum at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg. ‘Can you come tomorrow? We want to go through the test results with you. Bring a relative.’ Then it all went black.
I had five cancerous tumours in my breast that had spread to the lymph nodes. What I felt was probably fluid in the tissue around the tumors; my breast had started reacting to the cancerous cells. Less than a week after I was diagnosed, I got my first cytostatic and today seven months later, all my cytostatic and radiation treatments are done, and my breast has been removed. Sure, a few treatments to prevent a relapse are still to be made. But the most important thing is that there is no longer cancer in my body. I am cancer free.