a writing by Jacinta Ramayah

It started as a little bud in my breast. (Doctors call it a lump.) I willed it to go away. As I said my daily prayers I asked Him to make it disappear. As time passed I forgot about it as I dealt with the heap of work on my table. Retirement was around the corner and I promised myself a visit to the hospital once I became a retiree. But it seemed as the months sped by the bud had blossomed into a flower with roots reaching out to grip the circumference of my right breast. Suddenly it protruded as a fruit with a hard shell at the top. It took me another few months before I geared myself to make that daunting trip to see a doctor at the hospital in my hometown. The number of questions the group of doctors who observed me asked and their worried looks fazed me. The results of the biopsy a month later diagnosed malignant cancer with three lumps (one in my lymphatic node) and the operation was then scheduled for 24 December. By this time the clan had gathered round because I had promised celebrations in my home decked with holly, Christmas tree and a spray-white log cabin. Imagine their surprise when everyone saw that I was in the hospital trussed up like a ‘turkey’. I am at home now after a six-day stay at the hospital. What lies ahead is the cycle of chemotherapy and that frightens me.
The reason I am writing this is to let readers know that a regular trip to the hospital is necessary and never to take one’s body for granted.

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