On waiting for a diagnosis.

For my full surgery story, go here for Part I and here for Part II.

I’m discovering that from the outside,

it’s scary.

From the inside, with my own experience, I didn’t fully allow myself to be scared about my tumor, surgery, or potential diagnosis.

Early in the process, after I found out I had some sort of cyst or mass, a friend asked me if it was benign or malignant.  I don’t really remember my answer.  It might have been something about the odds being in my favor based on my age.

I mainly powered through my process, concentrated on other things, distracted myself, did a lot of yoga to minimize pain.

My parents, who came down for my surgery, who got updates from my surgeon and oncologist, told me afterwards, “You didn’t tell us much about the cancer risk.”

Now that I have friends who have had to go through similar diagnostic procedures, I realize, wow, the waiting game can be really intense, the not knowing, the anticipating an outcome.

My recommendation to a friend:  Allow yourself to be afraid if that’s how you feel, but don’t feed your fear.  Research and get information if it empowers you, but don’t spend too much – if any – time on online forums.  I would add:  Advocate for yourself and your health.  Ask questions.  Distract yourself as needed, and also take time to be present.  Ask friends and family for support through the process.  Take care of yourself.  Be hopeful.

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