Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Being Friends with NED

Today I had my second post-treatment diagnostic mammogram.  These will be part of my life, every six months, for four more years.  I'm grateful for the oversight and tracking.  I'm also aware that the anxiety that goes before these tests is normal, and for many women, decreases over time.  And I also know that the risk for a return of breast cancer never goes away, and so some anxiety is natural.  And I confess, after being told I would only have to wait ten or so minutes for my results, and that ten minutes turned into 45, I was feeling plenty of anxiety!

But I'm doing a happy dance, glad that one year after first being declared NED ("no evidence of disease," what they once termed "in remission."  Semantics.  Potato, potahto), I'm still showing no signs of cancer!  A milestone that I am celebrating by having my port removed in a few weeks! 

An education note for those who may not know, NED doesn't mean cured.  As has been pointed out many times by many, there is no cure for breast cancer.  Some cancers are considered cured if you reach a certain time away from disease, because statistically, your chances of that cancer returning after so many years drop dramatically.    This isn't true with breast cancer; it can return 1 year, 3 years, 18 years out. 

But for today I'm NED, I'm happy, and I'm moving forward!


Some people have asked why I haven't been updating more often.  Here's why:  Yes, I still have struggles and some issues.  I'm still working on getting energy and strength back, still working on getting my heart rate and blood pressure where they should be, still dealing with sometimes painful side effects of one of the cancer-blocking meds I'm on.  But these seem like relatively minor issues at this point in my life.  Not that they aren't frustrating issues -- but I just can't see complaining.  Or even, most of the time, reporting.  I'm tired some, but I'm happy a lot, and I'm finding joy daily.  And for me, for now, that's what's important.

I'm going to go find some of that joy right now with a walk in the woods.

Happy dance, everyone!