Peg Case


My Ta-Tas and the Twin Towers

by Peg Case

Dear Warriors:

Take a peek into my journal….September 3, 2001 – October 31, 2001.

It is my journey as I experienced it…

peg case

 

Waterdragon Warrior

September 3, 2001, Morning callback appointment at mammography center….due to blurry original. Did the girls blink?

 

September 3, 2001 – Afternoon call from mammography center… one of the girls got hold of a snowglobe! Hundreds of teeny tiny white specks covered the image of my right breast.

Now What? There are some things in life that you don’t focus on until it affects you, your family and your friends. Cancer was on that list.

 

September 5, 2001 – Girls Meet Dr. Angela Lanfranchi – yep she looks like, sounds like, and has the same humor as Rosanne Barr. Biopsy scheduled…I’m good, the girls are good, no worries.

September 11, 2001 – Living 40 miles from Manhattan …. The horrors and heroism were personal, overwhelming, paralyzing ……I packed it up, all of it, and shut the door.

 

September 18, 2001 – Mammography Technicians at Somerset Medical are going to mark the “spot” with a very thin wire inserted into my breast…. Seems painless enough……..Where did those teeny tiny white specks go? Girls stop playing around…..

 

30 minutes of contortionist positioning……the girls gave the snowglobe another shake…. current forecast…..white-out conditions, proceed with caution……

 

Wait! That looks like a gigantic version of my turkey injector!!… I faintly hear the tech say “don’t breathe, don’t move…”  

 

The moment the turkey injector pierced my skin…..all my doors blew open…..I wept for America, my young children, and my girls…………

 

September 19, 2001 – I am ready…..girls are ready…..my children are ready……my support team is ready…..lights out!

 

September 21, 2001 – Friday afternoon at Dr. Angela’s office, she hands me the lab results and a stack of books……..my weekend mission….geaux & learn things …….school is in session girls……. Lab Report: my cancer aggressive and seems to be contained in the network of milk ducts, biopsy had clear margins and the girls are dense and scarred.

 

Besides being Roseanne Barr’s doppelganger Dr. Angela is a member of Susan Komen Advisory Team and lecturers and does research in conjunction with Robert Wood Johnson Teaching Hospital in NJ. She is all about women and our girls.

 

September 21-23, 2001 –Weekend Assignment – Learn everything about my breast cancer to …MAKE AN INFORMED OBJECTIVE DECISION ABOUT MY HEALTH………..well there is a cacophony of voices in my head with opinions, questions, feelings, doubt, anger, Catholic guilt, sorrow, the yin and the yang, theatrical, and comedic. The southern belle (procrastinator) coupled with the runner were lobbying to shut it all down for the night…. when the mother stepped in and brought along the director.   I love a challenge, a new project to R&D ……making THE DECISION in 48 hours………

 

1st I had to get organized for this 2 day cram fest – one of my team took my kids, one cleaned my house and did all the laundry……. I went shopping for food, wine, post-its, highlighters, and a notebook! And invited my journalist friend to take notes, help with research, and be with me as I started this chapter…

 

September 24, 2001 – Back in Dr. Angela’s office, armored with notebook & tabbed books, I cannot get my mouth to open without tears …breathe…..Dr. Angela is writing down my options in my notebook as she explains each one…..I hear her, I see her…..my heart is racing…..I am screaming inside…frozen outside….WAIT… my objectivity is missing….I have no barriers….I brace for impact…….as the full weight of my subjectivity takes over……Dr. Angela led the welcoming committee with open arms & heart….for about 10 minutes…….then General Angela ordered me to strap my damn boots on and get to work……

 

The facts: aggressive, detection a miracle giving the dense/scarred topography of the girls, maternal grandmother & aunt were survivors, statistics of reoccurrences, and I am not currently broadcasting “live” from within 24/7. I have not ever been a lucky gambler…….BOTH GIRLS HAD TO GO….as those words came out of my mouth I felt stronger ….THIS IS MY LIFEI AM FIGHTING FOR MY LIFE ..FINAL ANSWER

 

October 29, 2001 – The day has come; I have organized my family, financial, and work responsibilities. Team Peg arrived and my only job today…..be the best advocate for myself with my medical team….and of course SURVIVE……..

 

October 30, 2001 – In the pre-dawn hours the smell of coffee brewing woke me up…… I couldn’t wait for the staff rounds…I buzzed for help…no ice chips…coffee, please?????   Oh, and who drove a MAC truck into my chest???? Several hours later I woke up again to Team Peg’s laughter……apparently wearing your coffee is funny…..it wasn’t until about noon that I really woke up…. and there at my bedside was Dr. Angela….and what she said was……….. “I had to go home and ice my knees because of YOU and THOSE EXTRA 4 HOURS OF SURGERY”…..what a trooper! Because of those extra 4 hours I have more blood flow in my chest; can wear low cut garments, my muscles in my chest were not massacred….I am so grateful… and ready to go home.

 

October 31, 2001 AM – it’s Halloween!!! I am ready for this pain to stop….. Checking out today after Dr. Angela discusses the final lab results with me…… waiting…….pain is crazy……. Dr. Angela opens the door and asks if I’m ready to go home, goes over the plan for the next 7 days, and then just smiles and gives me the biggest best hug & says…no lymph node involvement…… losing the girls was the cure for me….no radiation, no chemo…..I sobbed and laughed and probably hugged her too long, went into the hallway and shared my incredibly best possible ever news, then started packing………

 

October 31, 2001 PM – I walked into the hospital a fighter and left a warrior going home from the battle won…..my girls……my heroes……. my twin towers….we had some wild times……and the most precious….breastfeeding my three babies…… Claude, Christian, and Rose were waiting outside when I arrived home……waiting to hear in person what they already knew……..1, 2, 3….CANCER FREE!

 

UPDATE -October 20, 2017: the girls pop-up occasionally….mostly when I’m shopping in the frozen foods section …..so if you hear erotic laughter coming from those aisles…you’ll know ……they’re back……

 

Peace, Love, and Light

Peg Case