Friday, 15 April 2011

Number Nine: The Young One

I’ve been getting really confused about where I fit in age-wise lately. I swing from feeling ancient, the oldest one, surrounded by bright young things to feeling like a bright young thing myself. Twice now I’ve been chatting to people, talking about where we both went to school before realising they were about 12 years younger than me! So that makes me feel old! At work; the staff are getting younger and younger (this is of course not true… it is me who’s getting older!) on a recent work night out I found myself gazing around a bar (feeling about ninety) and thinking thank God I am where I am in life. How I would hate to be out looking for boys now! And at what point do you drop into conversation that you actually have just the one boob? By the way the left one’s filled with gel! I keep remembering the episode of Friends where Joey throws that girl’s wooden leg on the fire- imagine the possibilities with a prosthetic boob! Agh!

Nope, give me a quiet bar any day, where there’s somewhere to sit and I can actually hear my friends speak! Throw in an early night and I’m all yours! Thank the lord I already have a husband who loves even the one-boobed version of me. ‘In sickness and in health’ he quotes at me anytime I have a wobble about whether he’ll still love me and how sorry I am he has a sick wife. I worry he’ll be freaked out when I have no hair. ‘I’d fancy you even if you had a poo on your head!’ He actually said that! I’m telling you he has a one track mind and no amount of boob or hair reduction will be putting him off! I digress…so anyway, nightlife- makes me feel old. Realising my younger sisters can pull off denim dungaree shorts but I cannot- makes me feel old. Steve Wright’s golden oldies are getting more and more familiar by the bloody day – making me feel old!
There is, however one place where I feel like the sprightliest of spring chickens… the Breast care unit waiting room. I gaze around this room and feel like a kid myself! I’ve even had to take my own magazines in to add to the waiting room collection so I have something to read each time I go. There are a couple of support groups I could go along to but judging by the group shot on one of the posters I’d be thirty years younger than the other members (this may not be a bad thing- life experience and all that). I just get the feeling that my main issue (coping with the beast breast treatment whilst having very young children) wouldn’t be something these older ladies could help me with. My boys are the only children I’ve ever seen in the waiting room (which due to its lack of children is excruciatingly quiet).
When they talk you through having a mastectomy, they show you the choice of fake boobs you can have. ‘There is a silicon one that folds over like a natural droopy breast.’ The lovely breast care nurse told me before looking up and informing me that she didn’t think I’d be needing that sort just yet. See? Spring chicken-me! She also told me to take care when fastening my brooch, not to pierce my silicon boob. I don’t wear many brooches but looking around the waiting room I’ve spotted a few so I can see why this advice is mandatory!  Apparently cat claws can also be a potential hazard but anyone who knows me will know how unlikely it would be to find me handling furry creatures- Michaela Strachen I am NOT!
I said before that I’m hoping my boys are too young to be affected by this beast breast thing. Children are funny how they take things in their stride. At three years old my eldest has been very matter of fact about the whole thing- no sympathy what so ever but he does demand so see my scar every now and again! ‘Oooooh, can I touch it?’ and at preschool one of the staff said he grabbed her boobs the other day and said. ‘Oh, you’ve got two boobs. My mum’s just got one!’ I was embarrassed to hear this story but she thought it was hilarious so no harm done. I wonder if he’s going to grow up more boob obsessed than the average male? 

The Young One - The Stats!
The Young One-Proof!
Since I found my lump in my early twenties I claming I'm in one in 15,000- makes me feel more 'special'!

It’s worth noting what a fab job CoppaFeel are doing raising awareness of breast cancer in younger women- check out their website for advice on getting to know your own boobies!

Because breast cancer knows no age.

So Ginger’s leg ended up as firewood- I’ll keep you posted on the adventures of my fake boob!


  1. Erin - just saying Hi as one of the people out there in the same boat. I'm 30, have 2 children (2.5 and 10 mths), and I have Breast Cancer. I am having chemo before surgery, and lost my hair about a month ago. My children don't care and don't notice. My eldest says Grandma has my hair in her dressing up cupboard. You sound so upbeat and brave. Thinking of you. Xxx.

  2. Hi Liz,Ahhh, Lovely (but obviously sad too) to hear from someone in the same boat (let's hope we're sailing to somewhere nice!) you sound positive too- boo to wallowing! Ben's looking forward to shaving my head in a couple of weeks! It is comforting to know that others in a similar situation are coping just fine. Take care and keep me informed of any child related tips you have for me during chemo! Good luck! Xx