Wednesday, December 31, 2008

From the Mouths of Babes

As this holiday season winds down and the economic turmoil continues, it is refreshing to listen to the voices of the innocent. As I put my six year old to bed the other night she had a wonderful idea. "Mommy, when I grow up and move into my own house I think you should sell your house and move next door to me. What we will do is drive down a street and pick two houses that are exactly alike. We will buy them and then I can see you everyday even though I am a grown up." I loved this logic.
Somewhere in her six year old mind, it occurred to my daughter that I live a long way from my parents. My husbands family is closer but they certainly aren't down the street. It would be nice to have family close by. As it stands, my children see my parents for short intense visits where we try to cram as much "grandparenting" in as we can for them. It would be nice to have more time on a regular basis.
As she devised this plan, I became a little bit wistful. Where will I be twenty years from now? Hopefully I will be a vibrant sixty five year old. I recently saw my breast surgeon and asked him about my statistics for recurrence. Not one to sugarcoat anything, he said my risk is minimal now but I really won't know if I have licked this thing until I am thirteen years out from the diagnosis. Thirteen years! Wow. That is a long time to be on pins and needles.
For now I will try to put this in the back of my mind and dream about buying a house down the street from my daughter when she is grown and has her own children. I have a ways to go, but I am going to take it one day at a time.

3 comments:

Suzanne said...

Why did your surgeon say 13 years? I thought the first 2-3 years were critical and then the further you are from the initial diagnosis, the better your chance of no recurrence. What does your oncologist say?

I'm in a similar situation, same age at diagnosis, same age children but about 6 months behind you in chemo. My oncologist and surgeon did not say the same thing as yours did. I know all of the types of BC are different and it is creepy knowing it can come back at any time.

Jeanne Egan said...

Suzanne,
He said that the reason I cannot rule out recurrence is because I was ER+ and I also had a micromet. He said that my local rate of recurrence will drop dramatically after the first two to three years but my systemic risk is more long term, like the thirteen years. Keep in mind that my breast surgeon is not a cheery guy and tends to be very pessimistic. I did not ask my oncologist about risk of recurrence when I saw him earlier in the year but you can be sure that I will when I see him in May.

Jeanne Egan said...

Suzanne,
Just a couple of other things to note about my diagnosis. I was ER+, PR+, Her2Neu- with a micromet in my sentinal node. My breast surgeon also said that my recurrence rate is low but that because of the estrogen receptor positive tumor, which is the slowest growing, I cannot rule out recurrence until I have passed the thirteen year mark.