Monday, November 07, 2005

Breast cancer - the disease that keeps on givin'

My mom is a cancer factory. She had her first bout in her mid-thirties. Minor - they cut out the tumor, end of story. Second bout was breast cancer and pretty intense. Chemo, radiation, one amputated boobie and several related surgeries. She lost all her hair, and only regrew about three-quarters of it. She's been pretty thin ever since, which is turning out to be a convenient way for her to track down the new cancerous spots on her scalp.

That's right - more cancer. The spots are harmless and are easily removed now, but if left to grow could be deadly. On most people the spots are hidden by hair and so often aren't discovered until too late. But on my follicly-challenged mom, they can be spotted before they're much larger than a freckle. So aside from some chunks being removed from her scalp (which will of course result in more hair loss) she should be able to stay on top of this one. Thank you, breast cancer.

So my new daughterly duty is scalp watch. This is much better than my duties associated with the last cancer, which we won't get into. Ever. Ever. Again. I don't think I'd have the strength to go through that again (and, yeah, I think my mom's probably thinking the same thing).

Stay strong, mama. You're all I got left.

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