This entry was written by Jaime Rossano. Jaime, an instructor at a play and music facility, is also a college student pursuing a degree in Humanities and Social Science. Every other Friday, Jaime will share a blog entry about her breast cancer experience. This year-long blog series is in honor of LBBC’s 20th anniversary.
To read Jaime’s previous entries, enter “Jaime Rossano” in the search box on this site.
It just started to storm and I forgot my umbrella. At the beginning, everyone tells you “it will be okay.” But I can’t just feel “okay.”
As the timeline begins…
Things seem to just pass by. Time goes slow.
December 17th: Pathology-report day — the report showed more than my three tumors. Out of the eight lymph nodes that were removed, three were positive. Radiation just got added to my menu. The surgeon read the report twice – but still, I was shocked. After reading the results he expressed how glad he was that I chose to have the bi-lateral mastectomy.
December 20th: I spoke with my oncologist. Chemotherapy is also on the menu over the next 6 months. Am I scared? No question about that one. I finally figured out that it is okay to cry, yell, scream and want to close my eyes until this is over. What do I think about? I’m honestly not sure what I think about anymore. I am still in the phase of denial and anger. When someone asks me how I am doing, I just look at them. I know it’s a caring gesture, but, honestly how would you be doing under these circumstances? I would rather people not ask me “how I am doing.” Just say “hi!”
December 24th: Cookies in the making! Well, what a wonderful holiday season. I finally got a chance to bake cookies with my son, Ronnie, and our two favorite friends, Lori and Gloria. He loved it! It took me an hour to clean the kitchen but it was well worth it. Just to watch his face and see how excited he was to sprinkle the jimmies on the cookies was so rewarding. Christmas is approaching fast.
December 25th: It seems as though Christmas has come and gone and now it is just time to straighten up the house and put all our new things away. Santa came this year and gave us the most wonderful Christmas ever. I think we even saw a few snowflakes along the way.
We woke up early to see that our Christmas tree was surrounded by presents of different sizes! We had to be at my parents by 9 a.m. to celebrate the holiday with them. I would have liked to have been there by 6 a.m. like the good-old-days. But I had a toddler and a husband to get ready — it was not happening this year. My husband, Ron, and I opened our gifts on Christmas Eve to make Christmas a little less hectic. We got a Wii, tools, a vacuum cleaner, clothes, gift cards, pots and pans and so much more!
We brought baby Ronnie in the dining room. We caught his first reaction to Christmas on our new video camera. It was a gift from my parents. His smile lit up the room. He ran to the tree. He didn’t know which present to pick first! He, of course wanted to open his own gifts (he’s in the “independent-toddler stage” and wants to do EVERYTHING himself). It took us almost 45 minutes to open about 5 gifts!
9:00 a.m. at my parents came really fast. We headed out to my family’s Christmas celebration — more gift-giving. We enjoyed an amazing home-cooked Christmas dinner! The day was filled with laughter and fun. No one brought me anything that related to breast cancer. What a plus! For one day, I didn’t talk about it. I didn’t even feel it.
January 1st: As for the New Year approaching, I don’t plan on making any New Year’s resolutions. I take that back. For the New Year I will continue to be strong, be kind, be compassionate, be caring, be loving, be encouraging, be fearless and be me!
It seems as though the weather is a little calmer and things are starting to settle in.
Jaime starts chemotherapy on Monday, January 10th. What advice could you share that can help her through the next 6 months of treatment? Comment here or on our Facebook page.
Be sure to read Jaime’s previous entries, by entering “Jaime Rossano” in the search box on this site.