I sit in the doctor’s office in a boxy blue paper gown, waiting. My heart is bouncing in my chest. What I find out today will shape my life for months -- years, even. I’m here to learn more about the breast cancer that wormed its way into my body when I wasn’t looking.
"Were my margins clear?" I ask the oncologist when he finally appears and explains that he’ll be sending my tumor cells to a lab in California for a test that will measure the chance of a recurrence.
"We wouldn’t be having this conversation if they weren’t," he says.
My margins were clear! I sigh in relief.
A month ago, I would have seen clear margins as a sign of a feeble mind. As a retired college professor, I still find it impossible to read without a pencil. My book margins are littered with notes.
A month ago, I belonged to the land of the healthy. I was on the giving end of sympathy, a much easier place to be than where I am now.