20140105-214944.jpg I’m known for tossing things out, recycling, or donating as soon as I’m not using something anymore.

However, there have been a few possessions in my life that have managed to stand the test of time and, well, surprise even me.

I have an LL Bean backpack that my mom bought me on my first day of college – 20 years ago — that I still use now and again. Just yesterday, I threw on a pair of boots as I shoveled the foot of snow off of my walk way. Those boots? Bought them in 1994 — 19 years ago. While visiting from California this past week, my sister rummaged through a box at my mom’s house and emerged with my emerald green, cowl neck sweater — which I bought in 1992 – from 21 years ago (see proof on left). 1484053_10153724313140179_610798810_o

Today, I picked up my hormones. 

And, for the next 17 years, I’ll take a single pill each day.

Seventeen years. 

Now, I must let you know that this decision isn’t easy. There are lots of opinions about hormone replacement therapy (though the mainstream studies do NOT include those who are genetically positive), and there are camps of folks who are very pro and also very con about it. And, of course, there are lots of misconceptions about what it’s for, what it does, and who should or shouldn’t take it. There are also different forms of therapy (e.g., patch, pill, cream) and as many different doses. Thankfully, my outstanding friends at FORCE sum it up here, if you’re interested.

Me? I’m open. I’m open to the fact that my body is my body, and if I need it, I need it. If I don’t, I don’t.

I approached the drive through pharmacy window (side bar: brilliant idea, whoever thought of the drive through pharmacy window), and handed the pharm tech $40. I figured, $10 co-pay x 3 months, that should cover it. But, before the woman handed me my prescription, she said, “Oh, it’s actually $140.”

The thought crossed my mind: “Maybe this is too expensive. Maybe I just shouldn’t do it.”

It’s twelve days before my oopherectomy, and I’m feeling overwhelmed. I have my qualifying paper due in just 3 days, and instead of writing and editing APA style, I spent two hours in the kitchen prepping frozen meals for recovery. I didn’t have to do this. I’ll have plenty of people on hand to help, but my mind is trying to deal with this surgery in funny ways.

I’m feeling like this wasn’t enough time. This wasn’t a good time. Maybe I should cancel and reschedule. Maybe I should just wait until my doctoral program is done. Maybe I should wait until my family is settled into a better routine. Maybe… 

But, life marches on. There are 12 days left. Twelve days until my oopherectomy.

On Saturday morning, January 18th, I’ll take my first pill. What will I think about seventeen years later, as I take that last pill? Between those two points in time, one thing is for sure — I will never get ovarian cancer.

Squeezing in some family time before surgery

Squeezing in some family time before surgery

Peace, love, and conjugated estrogens,


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2 Responses to OOPHORECTOMY COUNTDOWN: 12 days

  1. AnnMarie says:

    You made some pretty practical fashion and backpack choices. May your hormone choices be as reliable and classic. Wishing you well!

  2. thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, resources and experience! i am brca1 positive and opting for pbm and oopharectomy later this year and am beyond ecstatic to have found your blog!
    i’ve started my own, with the hope that i can add more perspective to the brca fight: http://2014selfieproject.wordpress.com/
    i’d love to have you follow along!

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