Seems like this is my own fault
Hi. I'm 41, just had a core biopsy done of a breast lump. Nurse Navigator seemed to be preparing me for a cancer diagnosis, though the other day the radiologist said it could go either way-- she said BIRAD4B and gave me 50/50 odds.
I've had this breast lump for a LONG time. Had a smooth, rubbery, very moveable lump that went up and down with my cycle, had it checked by my doc back in 2018 and again in 2019-- she wasn't concerned. Fast forward pandemic 2020. Thanks to the pandemic and tremendous work stress (I'm a writer, was working on a very high pressure book deadline) my mental health plummeted. I started pressing on the breast lump obsessively, reading about cancer, terrified of cancer but too scared to do anything. By Spring 2021 my mental health was even worse (continuing pandemic, legal issues with my book etc). At this point I was engaging in self harm, pushing on the breast lump until I felt searing pain, causing bruising and swelling. After I started doing this (March 2021) the lump began to change. The smooth orginal lump developed two little lumps on top which seemed attached to the skin. Again, I obsessively read about cancer but I was dealing with such severe depression and anxiety I did nothing. (I have struggled with severe health anxiety my whole life.) My mental health was so bad I even struggled with suicidal ideation. (Due to the pandemic its very difficult to find mental health treatment, even in DC).
For months I would push on the area many times a day. Sometimes the whole area would swell up like a rock. Eventually I used large band aids to keep myself from pushing on it. The area shrank, but tthe two smaller skin attached lumps remained. A couple weeks ago I gathered all my strength and scheduled imaging. I don't know what the mammogram showed, but the ultrasound was concerning. The words irregular and "some spiculation" were used.
I will get the biopsy results in person in about a week. I've already scheduled brow microblading, a meeting with a cold capper, and a virtual consultation with a hair replacement specialist in NYC.
What's destroying me is the guilt. I already see myself as the cautionary tale. Everywhere you hear about early detection. I was just talking to my friend, and when i mentioned feeling the lump last year he was stunned that I've had it for a year and did nothing. I had to get off the phone, I broke down in tears. I have a boyfriend I love, a life that I DID love before stress, anxiety, obsessive thoughts and depression took my joy away.
I see the future laid out, the "you have cancer" meeting, but worst of all the PET scan which will inevitably show metastasis. My friend was horrified that I delayed this for so long. It's hard to communicate how sick I was mentally and emotionally last year.
It seems highly unlikely that someone as young as me (41) could have a non aggressive cancer. I feel sure I will have Triple Negative cancer.
I am sorry for the length of this post. I just can't let go of the guilt.