My big sister was a beautiful, smart, talented mother of 4 lovely girls. "Was" because she is dead. Does that sound harsh? It should. She did not have to die. She should have gone for check ups. She didn't. Would a mammogram really have caught it? Yes, because she had felt the lump for several years. It took me a long time to get over being angry that such a smart lady could be so stupid.
We could also talk about my step mother who the whole family nagged to go see a doctor but who wouldn't until it was too late. She too died of cancer. When she was a young woman, she was responsible for the care of a sister who was dying of cancer. She was so afraid of the "cancer" that she would not go to the doctor...and this was like 40 years and lots of advancement in medicine later. She died of cancer of the bowel.
So, why am I telling you about my family? Because people don't always have to die of cancer. You need to listen to your body. If you think you feel something abnormal, see your doctor. If you it is time for a mammogram, go! If it is time for a colonoscopy, go!
"Oh, but it hurt!" Fooy! I am...."well endowed", so to speak. Trust me, I know it is sometimes more than a little 'uncomfortable' but it is only once a year. And the pain of breast cancer is a lot more painful (and not just to you).
If you are scared to go for a mammogram, ask a friend to go with you! In fact, talk to the women you work/knit/read with and see if you can go as a group or make a pact or go with the women of your family! Take your daughters...they need to know about what this is all about; why it is important test they need to take after a certain age. Teach them early how to do self exams. Set a good example.
Just so you know, I make sure I talk to my sister some time this month, every year to make sure she has had or soon will have her mammogram. I also, because we are of the age, when the last time she had a colonoscopy.
Please, take what I have written to heart! I love you all and want you to be safe and well and happy!