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Remember my fiasco with the doctor with:bad bedside manner ?

I hadn't seen Dr. Sigall for probably ten years. As I walked into his office and embraced the doctor who 22 years ago delivered my baby girl, it felt like I'd never left. Quiet, patient and thorough, he reviewed the mammogram report and examined my breast. He explained that while the radiologist said that the findings were "probably benign," he wasn't comfortable waiting for six months to re-check. He referred me to a breast specialist and asked that I see him immediately.

My new doctor was just as attentive and patient, but what was I doing in his office talking about a possibility -  even a slight one  - of breast cancer? This couldn't happen to me. This kind of thing always happens to someone else, right?

As my husband and I sat in the doctor's office listening to my biopsy options, I had an uncomfortable feeling. The doctor didn't pressure me. But I could tell by his tone of voice and body language that he favored having the biopsy. As I walked out of his office, I decided that I couldn't afford to do nothing.

I drove to Los Angeles to have both of my breasts biopsied, for different findings. I wasn't thrilled when only one biopsy was successful; the other had to be done surgically. As I left the hospital, my gut feeling told me that the news would be gloomy, yet I felt calm and composed.

The call from the doctor came the next evening.  Forget the feeling in my stomach the day before, forget the signs and my earlier intuition, this was real! The voice on the other end of the phone softly said the words that nobody wants to hear - my biopsy came back positive, and there is cancer in that particular area of my breast.

My son was standing two feet away, and I wasn't ready to tell him, so I took the phone upstairs, closed my bedroom door and activated the speaker. My husband had a look of horror on his face when he understood who I was talking to. Looking at him I knew I had to be strong, but how? As I struggled to pay attention to what the doctor was telling me, my mind was already trying to figure out the right thing to do.

Going through the options, it became clear that the surgery had to be done immediately, which meant going in for more tests to get ready. I hung up the phone, more concerned for my hubby than me. He looked heartbroken and scared, while I felt a wave of shock wash over me. Instead of the "fun" being over, it just beginning.

It took two days to get my head, heart and emotions back in alignment, but once they settled down I felt like my normal self again. I firmly believe that we are only dealt what we can handle, and whatever we go through in life happens for a reason. I'm virtually surrounded by all of you wonderful ladies, I have a voice, and I'm going to use it!

DON'T wait if you have an abnormal mammogram, and don't listen to "probably benign" findings. "Probably" should never be part of our vocabulary when it comes to our health. Why bother getting early mammograms if we are not going to act on them?

DON'T settle for doctors with bad bedside manners. You are special, and you deserve so much more.

DON'T postpone any kind of tests, as they sometimes save lives.

As for me, I'm scheduled for surgery, and will post this blog after it's done. I don't want to alarm my parents or the kids until it's all over and they can look at me without worrying about what the doctor will find when he operates.  

I will make it my mission in life to tell every woman I know that biopsy is YOUR choice and should be exercised if there is ANY doubt.  

I will make more time to live in the NOW, and not when I have time.  

My publicist once told me that Fabulously40 couldn't get much recognition because while the concept is good, I didn't have a wild, exciting or traumatic story that people can relate too. Well, now there are no excuses. I'm a cancer survivor (and forever will be because I'm just getting started), and my publicist better get Fabulously40 the coverage we deserve!
Here's to your health and mine.

Cheers,

+30
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Member Comments

    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Denise Richardson wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana! thank you for sharing your story with us I know too well the horror of this disease it has poked its head up in my family line for too long and has taken (4) of my loved one’s and tried to get at me twice so I know where you are but GOD! I am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers and will join in the journey to help fight against this horrible disease. My love, prayers and blessings are with you and your family.heart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Momofthreeprincess wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Thank you for the reminder.  Both my mother and her mother had several tumors that were benign, but they both chose to have their breast removed.  At that time it was just standard procedure.  Now with early detection, the advancements in breast cancer research and the will of God and ourselves we can beat it and go through life whole.  You and your family are in my prayers.  And your publicist is so wrong.



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    • +2 votes vote up vote up

      Carenleetx wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Stay strong sister!  I am coming up on 6 years as a survivor (diagnosed at 36).  Positive attitude and your will to fight and overcome will get you through!  If I can answer any questions, feel free to email me.

      Hope!
      Caren



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Vikki Hall wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana thank you for the reminder!  

      I did have mine done recently and got an all clear letter.

      I am sending you hugs, love and prayers!



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Beverley Woodman wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Thank you for sharing your story with me.  You will be in my thoughts and prayers.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Ducorpstoo wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Thank you for sharing your story. I too, was diagnosed with breast cancer (early stage) in August 2010. Had lumpectomy followed by radiation-the radiation being completed at the beginning of november. I will be keeping you in my thoughts.

      ((Hugs))



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Midnightmom wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Oh,Yanna! Now I know what is on your plate. I have thought about you every single day since you asked me to not tell Susan that you had a serious health problem. It is up to you to tell whomever you choose, but since you are posting it here perhaps Susan should know? She is home now, but it looks like she came home too early.

      You are strong and on the path of positive conviction and action. Godspeed to you!

      All the best,

      Kathy



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Linda Hendricks wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • I’m so sorry to hear your news... you are not alone....I too had the exact circumstance... in 1994.... so there’s good news... catch it early ... don’t wait and it can and will make a difference.... I’m proof.

      I’m here for you and as for getting the message out.. count me in... your message is right on point... as for getting a caring doctor... ABSOLUTELY... I had a jerk of a surgeon for one of the early biopsies... my GP at the time and I dumped him in a heartbeat and found one that made all the difference in my state of mind.

      Here’s to posting about it in 16 years...

      Thinking of you,
      Linda



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Marlyn Delgado wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • heartYANA THANKS FOR SHARING YOUR STORY..THIS IS ONE OF THE INPORTANT THINGS THAT ALL LADYS HAVE TO DO EVERYYEAR..MARI



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Godrescuedgirl wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,

      Thank you! As a cancer survivor myself... I applaud you! I know that keeping a positive outlook every step of the way is a major key. You have been an awesome inspiration in my life throughout the years.  

      The issue with your publicist; they need to get their head out of the sand. Fabulously40 is the best! If it had not been for the awesome support of these great women I would not have had the courage to make some of the changes I have needed to make over the last few months.  

      In being around this wonderful group of encouragers; watching and listening to their stories, words of wisdom and seeing the ways they support of each other - I was finally able to step up and step out. And I am so glad I did. My thanks goes to God, to you, Fab40 and all of them. I could not have done it with out any of you! You were my strength in my time.  

      You are in my heart and in my prayers. Please don’t hesitate to contact me at any time if you need support, prayer, or just need an ear. I am here - 24/7.  

      Love & Hugs!



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      J. Swindell wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,

      Thank you first for bringing us all together in this forum to share our personal accounts.

      I’ve known many women over the years who’ve had varied results (none fatal, thank goodness) but after they found their inner strength, were able to smile during tough times.

      I’m hoping this will be the same for you.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Lynnz wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,
      My thoughts and prayers are, and will continue to be with you and your family.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Vanessa McGrady wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • You’ve got the most important part covered: Attitude. Be well.

      Vanessa McGrady
      www.40licious.org



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Maisen Mosley wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Thanks so much for sharing your bravery with us! You‘re in my thoughts and I know you will be victorious!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Ingulechka wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, thank you for the post and your wonderful site! I admire your strength!!! You are such an inspiration. You WILL beat this, no doubt! It’s early stage, you have a GREAT  attitude, and support of your family, doctors,  and all of the women at this wonderful site. You are Fabulous!!!



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Tuliplady wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, my thoughts and prayers are with you.  Your positive attitude is an inspiration for all of us.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Djo1 wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • My thoughts and prayers are with you. heart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Yana Berlin wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Dear Fabbers,

      Thank you for your continued support and well wishes. When the tough gets tougher it’s soothing to know that I have our Fab40 Tribe to lean on to.

      Our risk of developing breast cancer increases as we get older. About 1 out of 8 invasive breast cancers are found in women younger than 45. The numbers don not get any better as we age. Two out of three women will develop invasive breast cancers after the age of 55.

      @Turbandiva  posted a comment on my blog and contacted me when I posted my original blog

      What happened to me happens often. Because of insurances companies, money constrains, and hectic schedules, women along with the help of their doctors opt in to wait for six month to see if anything has changed. Be aware that my mammogram, only showed the non invasive cancer. The invasive one was spreading without any signs, and was only visible at biopsy. Had I waited six month, the non invasive cancer might of not changed at all.

      We are way to important, not to take our health seriously.

      Schedule your mammogram today if it has been a year or more. There is no reason to wait.



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    • +2 votes vote up vote up

      Coralee Flug wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Not only do we need to find a cure we need to prevent women for every having to go thru it. Prevention is Key.

      Sending you good thoughts, stay strong my friend.
      ((hugs form TX))
      Coralee



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana...I am so sorry to read this but thank you for sharing.
      Your story lit a fire under me in making an appt for my extremely past due mammogram. The last one I had was in January of 2009...NOT GOOD. I’m considered high risk and have already had one benign tumor removed. Why I did not get it in January of 2010..I have no clue. There is no excuse.
      After reading your story I picked up the phone and made the phone call to schedule the mammogram. I got it for this Wed. at 3:20.
      You are a strong woman and I know that God will use you to inspire others to take charge of their health as you did for me.  I will keep you in my daily prayers.  God Bless and thanks for the kick in the butt!



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Barbie Larsen wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana....My thoughts and prayers go with you as well.

      March of 2009, I had a mammogram.  I received a dreaded phone call that the radiologist needed to do 2 needle biopsies in my right breast.  Once of the needle biopsies showed pre-cancerous cells.

      June of 2009, my surgeon removed the pre-cancerous cells.  He did a very good job and you can’t even tell I had surgery.  All is well.

      Now I have to have digital mammograms as a result of that incident.

      As of April 2010, they are watching my left breast.

      I can’t state any more then you:  Get your mammograms!!!  Early detection saves a lot of unnecessary worry for you and your family.

      Many hugs to you Yana!!!

      Barbie



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Rose Nino wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • heartMy thoughts and prayers are with you Yana.heart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Cmrobert wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,
      Please know that I have lifted you in prayer.  

      Cheryl~



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Mztracy wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, my sister is almost 6 years remission from stage 3 breast cancer, all 15 of 15 nodes were cancerous. She fought and she won and the doctors still scratch their heads over her. My mom won as well.

      You are a fighter and you will win this and we are all behind you!!
      heartheartheartheartheartheartheartheart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Cheekymonkey wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • heartYana, my heart is broken for I completely understand. I also understand better our conversations about doctors.
      We all are here for u
      Hugs and love
      Cris



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Anne E wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,
      I am so very sorry that you are going through this.  If I understand your Blog correctly, you have recently had the surgery.  I hope that went well and you have a smooth recovery. One of my closest friends went through this 3 years ago so I understand a little of what you are going through.   You are strong and well-supported with a wonderful family, large circle of friends, and (finally!) a caring team of doctors- I know you are going to beat this!  My prayers are with you. heart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Carine Nadel wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Oh dearest Yana,

      My prayers and love are here for you-my worry is on high. however, I leave you w/ this very good story:  a friend of mine also caught “it” early, she had the lumpectomy and 12 weeks of radiation and worked through the entire thing.

      She is fine and it’s been over 5 years.

      NOW:  read the article I did about the latest therapies!!!

      after a lumpectomy there are not one but 2 procedures that 3 years ago were brand spanking new-after the lumpectomy, they insert a special “seed” of radition tube into the area and you go in twice a day for 20 minutes for 5 days and then, you are done.

      I’ll get you the link, you may have even run it here on Fab40 in the early days.

      (((  )))



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Cynthia Rowland wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, you are in my thoughts and prayers!! Thank you for being brave and sharing your story with us heart



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Jo46 wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana-Thank you for sharing your personal story with us.  Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Stephanie Wolf wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, thanks for sharing something so personal with us.  My thoughts are prayers are with you and your family.  As mentioned earlier, your strong attitude is a plus for you.  A very good friend of mine is a survivor, and I’m sure you’ll be just as strong.  As you  mentioned, we seem to get dealt what we can deal with, and as unfortunate as this is, you are someone who can survive it.  I seem to remember your story not too long ago about backing up in a snowstorm???!!!!  You are one strong survivor, and we will all be here for you.

      Stephanie



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Ela2011 wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana- thanks for sharing.  I have not been here long but I can tell that you are a strong person and very well-loved.  My thoughts are with you and your family.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Karen J. Rinehart wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • AMEN SISTAH! Go with your gut and find the doctor that’s right for you.....and pursue further answers...I am SO glad you listened to your feminine and maternal intuition.heart
      Holding you close, Yana. xo xo
      ~Karen



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Paulina Jacobs wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, I am wishing you much strength and support....all that is needed to see you through this difficult time.
      Paulina



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Frannie1964 wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Thoughts and prayers are with youheart

      Thank you for sharing and reminding us.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Kolakola wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana you are very courageous for sharing with us and reminding me that it is time for a mammogram.  

      U R A Treasure:)



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Jewelrybyirina wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Dear Yana,
      Thank you for sharing your story!
      You are in my prayers!
      Everything will be fine, you’ll see.  The main thing- they found it in early stage.  Be strong!!!

      Hugs,



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Kandykahne 5 wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana, sorry to read this. Hugs and prayers to you.heartheart



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    • +5 votes vote up vote up

      Kyah wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Your name is an acronym:
      You
      Are
      Not
      Alone!



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Anaise wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • You are a survivor already in my eyes.  I admire your strength and persistence and you are truly an inspiration to me.  I went through a horror period in my life when my sister went through this awful cancer.  What makes me angry til this day is that she was told 2 years before it took a toll on her life.  I don’t understand why she decided to wait.  There is no excuse to wait, none what so ever.  Move when your doctor says something has been found.  Move to extend your life into the future.  Move to make your life matter.  Move because people give a damn about you.  Move to tell the world you survived and will inspire others to act NOW.  You are definitely important to us right now.  We want to know what you are going through.  I won’t tell you that you are in my prayers because I want to hear about your plight on a daily or weekly basis.  I want you to know that you are very much supported especially when cancer issues go very deep with me.  Write for us.  I look forward to reading what you are going through because I can relate after the loss of my sister.  Don’t forget to write.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Shana Montgomery wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana,
      I am a survivor, too.  I was diagnosed in June of this past year.  I had a bi-lateral mastectomy, followed by 33 radiation treatments then had reconstructive surgery in December. So, I know where you’ve been and where you are.  Our fight will never be over because we will be fighting for those who haven’t been diagnosed and those who have lost the fight.

      Don’t be afraid to talk about how you feel.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Joyousone wrote Feb 7, 2011
    • Yana - you‘re one strong lady and my prayers go out to you that everything will be fine.

      I know what you mean though and every year I go through the testing as my Mom and her older sister had breast cancer.  But getting it detected early enough and with the surgeries they went through, they both beat it and haven’t had any recurrences in a long while.

      You are a survivor in so many ways in your life!



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