The email I received was from a young woman recently diagnosed with breast cancer who read my essay in a doctor's waiting room. She asked about my decision to have a lumpectomy versus a mastectomy. She needed to make a decision – and soon – to remove her breasts or not (I asked her permission to write this post and she kindly agreed).
My first reaction when I heard I had cancer was, Get these things off me. But then I received the results of my BRCA test – and it was negative. I did not have cancer in my lymph nodes and the tumor was well contained. So I opted for a lumpectomy.
I was up and about the day after my surgery. And the results looked remarkably good.
Was it the right decision? I don't know. They tell you that once you've made your choice, be at peace with it and don't look back. I'm hopeful. But I do wonder. Time will tell.