I had my mammogram today. I didn’t mean to put it off, I just forgot about it.
Repeatedly. It’s not like I was afraid of the unknown. I’ve had a dozen of them before. Well, maybe I was a little afraid. I need to know but don’t WANT to know, you know? But really, I’ve just been too busy with homeschooling and the teenagers and their activities to think about that.
Last week, my husband questioned me about it, knowing that I’d been putting it off.
“Did you make your appointment today?”
“Yes. It’s next week.”
“Good! And you say men are bad about going to the doctor”
Most mothers I know, especially homeschool moms, are better at self-sacrifice than self-care.
I’m not the best at self-care. What you put first can end up being detrimental if you don’t have your priorities straight. We are programmed to put everyone else first but let me tell you this:
Taking care of yourself is not selfish. It is smart. It is prevention.
It is to help ensure you will be around to finish what you started.
This was not my typical mammogram appointment.
First, the waiting room I am accustomed to being sent to was closed due to remodeling, so I had to “Wait up here and she will come and bring you downstairs.”
I killed time playing backgammon on my iPhone until a woman came up to get me. Me and two other ladies, that is. We were all looking at each other and probably wondering the same thing: When did they start doing group mammograms?
We felt like part of an assembly line as we were given the instructions and sent to the changing rooms. After I had put on my short gown-with-the-opening-in-the-front, I sat down in the little room and flipped through a magazine. From somewhere immediately outside the sliding door to my dressing room, I definitely heard a man’s voice. Well, this is different.
I was called to a screening room fairly soon, and the lady was quick to explain that the man was repairing a broken down machine in another room. I can’t explain the relief I felt that he wasn’t the tech doing the positioning. (That would be just a bit too personal for me, thankyouverymuch.)
If you’ve ever been handled, lifted, pressed, and flattened by a mammographer, you know what I mean. Let’s just say that mammography is a very hands-on profession.
So I got it out of the way for another year. One more check to keep tabs on my calcified mams, now sufficiently sore and squished. Considering that my Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 35 (and was told it “couldn’t be cancer, because you are too young”), I am pretty faithful to get mine done although I do need to be reminded sometimes.
There have been potential bad spots in there for several years, and they watch me pretty closely. If you have breast or ovarian cancer in the family, many insurance companies now fully cover the BRCA gene testing to find out if you’re a carrier. (I was tested a few years ago and I’m BRCA-Negative, much to the relief of myself and my daughters.)
Now to remind my husband about his date with a rubber-gloved man called Doctor Z.
Self-care is NOT selfish. What are you doing to take care of yourself?