Today was my annual check up at the breast clinic. Always a slightly anxious time - it doesn't matter what common sense tells you, there is always the faint possibility that something will be wrong, and I have a feeling that anxiety is catching... I walk in fine and am nervous by the time my name is called!
Anyway, good news, I am now nine years a NED and have only one more year of follow up to go. Cue happy dance!
Back in 2011, when I had my surgery, the standard follow up for this part of Scotland was a decade. Things have changed a lot, and now it is only high risk patients who are offered long term follow-up. Many, maybe most, of the people I know who were diagnosed after me have been discharged - their risk is lower than mine. I sometimes get told off for being 'fatalistic' or 'negative' but the reality is I have beaten and continue to beat, the odds for my starting point; even using the latest data, I am in a shrinking minority. I am truly grateful to be here, and to be well - but I cannot ever forget the lower risk women who are no longer here.
Annual post check-up nag, then... do the screening, do the self-examinations, report lumps, bumps, bleeding, dodgy moles, persistent coughs, unexpected weight loss and so on. Cancer treatment isn't fun - but it's better than the alternative.
Still NEDdy after all these years!!