Don’t tell anyone, but….

I found a lump. I don’t usually discuss personal things on my blog, I like to keep them private. But sometimes it might be helpful for people to hear, so I occasionally force myself to.

Anyway, I don’t usually check for odd lumps and bumps – do you? I know that I should, especially as there is so much family history of cancer. Though it seems to me, that nowadays, everyone has a family history of cancer. I don’t know anyone who hasn’t lost a parent or aunt or cousin. To be honest, I think it’s because I know cancer is in the family, that I don’t like checking. I kind of don’t want to know. I don’t want to have to deal with it, to think about it, to have all the hassle related to any kind of medical problem.

It’s not that I’m worried about dying. When I was diagnosed with a brain tumour, the reality of my body having a ‘use-by’ date was rather hammered home. I had to face that I very well might die soon. It wasn’t scary, because I know what I believe about God, and I trusted him to take care of the whole afterwards side of things. But I didn’t want to die. I still don’t. Partly because I don’t want to miss things – I want to see my children settled, any grandchildren that come along, spend time as a grumpy old woman with my grumpy old husband. Plus there’s lots of things I still want to do. So death, although not scary, is unwelcome.

No, it’s not that I might die, it’s the medical intervention that worries me. I don’t want to be ill. All the hassle of hospitals, and having no energy, and inconveniencing other people. I just don’t want it. I’ve been ill, had my five year headache, recovered from a craniotomy, done. I don’t want something else. Surely it should be someone else’s turn? So, I don’t check very often, but occasionally I do, and this time I found something. Big bummer.

I went to the doctor. Never easy, but they gave me an appointment and I saw a very efficient woman, who said I needed to be referred to the hospital. Disappointing – I was hoping she’d tell me it was nothing and to go home and not be silly.

The hospital appointment came within a couple of weeks, and off I went with some books to read and snacks. Hospitals are never quick. I didn’t tell anyone, because I found with the brain tumour that people don’t always react how you want. They either try to reassure you, and tell you not to worry – which they cannot possibly know, and you are worried, so that doesn’t help. Or, they go into panic mode and you end up reassuring them instead! So I mentioned it to Husband, but then went off on my own.

It was fine. The staff were very professional. I had to wait about three years in various waiting rooms, and I was pretty sure one patient had died a few weeks ago and hadn’t been spotted yet, but when you actually were with the doctors, they were very good. They managed to be sensitive and business-like, and I trusted them. People moan about the NHS in the UK, but I wouldn’t want to be ill anywhere else. We have good doctors and nurses and support staff.

People in hospital are different, have you noticed that? Outside, they might be highly educated, or very fashionable, or super-rich. But in hospital, waiting to find out whether or not you have cancer, everyone is the same. Just people. All tired of waiting. All slightly tense. All real. There’s not much pretence in a hospital, which I kind of like.

My lump turned out to be nothing. It can safely be ignored. They were nice about it though, said I did the right thing to have it checked – because if it had been something nasty, they can often deal with it before it does any harm. Which is why I’m writing this. Old or young, male or female, when did you last do the ‘odd lump’ check? Perhaps you should. I’m not brave, and I hate doing things like that, but if I managed it, so can you.

Thanks for reading.

If you want to know more about what I believe, take a look at :

On a completely different note…..I was emailed by Samantha Day from Meridian FM and asked if I would speak on the radio about psychopaths, and JOANNA, and my book launch. Wow! Very scary, very exciting. I am going on Wednesday 15th at 11 o’clock. I’m assuming it’s a live broadcast, as her show is 11 til 1, but it might not be. I will let you know how I get on.

2 thoughts on “Don’t tell anyone, but….

  1. I’m so glad your lump turned out to be nothing dangerous at all.

    I had a similar experience once. It is such a relief to be given that news. If you do turn out to have a life threatening-illness, it’s much better to catch it early as well for all of the reasons you mentioned!


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