The story of a mammogram: Part one.
This is a story of two parts.
The first part is the part you’re reading now. It’s after I’ve had my first mammogram and before I’ve received my results.
The second part comes later, when my results arrive. I have no idea what they’ll say. I have no idea how I’ll feel. So the second part is for later.
For now, I’ve kind of forgotten that I got topless in front of a work colleague who videoed my mammogram in its entirety, including the bits where my boobs were positioned on a slab by the radiographer in much the same way as a gourmet butcher would handle a fine piece of fillet. That is to say, with care and an enviable level of professionalism.
I can tell you this: yes, the women at BreastScreen New South Wales are both kind and gentle.
No, getting a mammogram doesn't hurt.
And yes, you should pay attention to the stats that say one in eight women in NSW will get breast cancer in their lifetime.
It’s not so long since I had dinner with college mates. It was in memory of our friend Jackie, who died 30 years ago after being diagnosed with breast cancer in her 20s - way, way too young. I can still remember feeling the hard lump in Jackie’s breast all those years ago, about the size of a golf ball, and her asking if she should get it checked.