Friday, October 23, 2009

We Interrupt Breast Cancer Awareness Month To Talk About Accidental Sex

I was chatting (well, not chatting, tweeting really) with Twammogram co-founder Laura tonight and the subject turned to "accidental sex". I told her I had a story about accidental sex, but it did not involve any actual sex. There was no way I could tell this story in 140 characters-so here I am on my blog, over-sharing, AGAIN.

Some of you already know, before Mr. Misha I was with a man named Mark. He was a wonderful guy but he
died. And then later I met Mr. Misha, so it's all okay- so don't start giving me the widow treatment in the comments or on twitter, I'm already feeling kinda stabby tonight. You don't want to mess with me.

Anywho, so I was living with Mark. One night, while I was preparing for a trip to Mexico with The Hoz, Mark started talking about safety precautions I needed to take on the ship and in Mexico. I listened, because he was a cop and he took safety very seriously. Then his speech took a weird turn I wasn't prepared for:

Him: So, I know you guys are going to have a good time. I don't want you to feel like you can't party like you normally do with The Hoz just because we are together.

Me: I know. I have been on trips with them while we have been together before. Remember when we were in Vegas, I drunk dialed you all night and told you about all the bald men we were accosting? I'll get drunk. I'll get loud. I'll dance, sing and yell. But you know at the end of the night, I'll be back in the cabin with Melissa, as usual.

Him: Well, I just want you to know, well, um if you had a little too much to drink and well you made-out with a dude or accidentally had sex with him or something. I'd forgive you.

Me: What? How in the hell do you accidentally have sex with someone? Do you think that I am going to get so drunk that I'll fall down while simultaneously having my pants fall off and then- AT THAT EXACT MOMENT, some random dude, whose pants have also fallen off, will trip and fall and his penis will end up inside my vagina? Is that what you mean by accidental sex?

Him: Well, no. That's not what I meant.

Me: Number One: I don't have accidental sex. I have purposeful sex. Number Two: I am going on a trip with 5 women who love you to pieces and if they saw me anywhere near another man's penis they would beat me about the head and neck until I was unconscious and then drag me to the cabin, where they would restrain me for the rest of the cruise, occasionally berating me for even thinking about another man's nether regions. Number Three: Just because you'd forgive me for accidental sex does not give you a free pass on anything. We are monogamous. If you are not happy with that arrangement, speak up and we can end it. You have sex with anyone else, accidental or not, you will have to deal with the wrath of an angry redhead.

Him: Alright. I'm glad we got that cleared up.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Boobs: Not So Free And Clear

I really wasn't worried when I went to get my mammogram. I didn't have a family history of breast cancer. In fact, my family has a history of living pretty unhealthy lifestyles full of things that are carcinogenic and the only cancer that has ever effected them has been skin cancer, even that hasn't killed any of them. What weakens and kills my family are heart and lung diseases.

So, I merrily tweeted my mammogram without even thinking about the results. Which is odd for me. I'm a girl who likes to plan everything. A chick who likes to make contingency plans. In work and in play, I hope for the best but plan for the worst- just in case. Apparently, I was experiencing some sort of psychic-denial-foreshadowing-protective mashup dealio in my sleep deprived, ginger brain. Because, of course, my mammogram results were ABNORMAL.
I was napping when I got the call from my doctor's assistant. I heard "densities", "looks benign" and "should get checked again in 6 months", I tweeted it and then went back to sleep. When I woke up to get ready for work, it started to sink in. My mammogram wasn't normal. While showering, I talked myself down, "It looks benign, you don't need to worry." Then I told Mr. Misha. He looked terrified. Even when I explained that they said it looked fine, he still looked scared. He didn't want to wait 6 months. That's when I started to get scared.

I figured I would just ask one of the docs at work that night to explain the results to me. I got put on call. So I called the charge nurse and asked her if a doc came in for a delivery to have them call me. Labor and delivery was a ghost town that night and no docs came in that night. So I waited until 9am the next morning to call my doctor's office. I thought I would just see if he could call me and explain the results. If that wasn't an option, I'd make an appointment to come in and discuss the results. The phone call left me angry and tearful.

"Dr. P 's office"

"Hi, this is Misha. I was asleep when you gave me my mammogram results yesterday over the phone and I have a few questions. I was wondering if Dr. P could call me and go over the results? I really just need about 5 minutes of his time."

"Uh, yeah. He doesn't do phone calls."

"Oh, well then, can I make an appointment to meet with him and discuss the results?"

"Sure. But we don't have any appointments open for two weeks."

"Could you call me if you get a cancellation?"

"No. You can call each morning to see if we have any cancellations and try and get a same day appointment."

"Could you at least mail me a copy of the radiology report?"

"No. I can make a copy and you can come by the office and pick it up."

"Alright. I'll be by this afternoon."

I understand the doctor is busy. I understand his time is valuable. I also know how I treat my patients. I would never treat my patients this way. When a patient has questions about their health, I find a way to get the answers for them in a timely manner. I'm not changing doctors. He probably doesn't even know that this happened. I will tell him what happened and how upset I was. I will let him know how rude his assistant was. I will stand up for myself.

Anywho, Tuesday night I went to work and lo and behold- there were babies to be birthed and doctors there to catch said babies! Fortunately, the doc that was there that night likes me, is Unabomber smart and willing to sit down with me for 5 minutes (Yes, Dr. P's assistant, it only took 5 minutes, so you can bite me.) and talk me through the report.

So this is what my report said:

There are multiple sub-5mm smooth low density nodular opacities present. These are probably benign, have smooth outer margins and are well demarcated. In view of the absence of previous films for comparison, suggest six-month follow up mammogram.

There is no dominant mass, skin thickening, nipple retraction or malignant appearing calcification.

CONCLUSION: Multiple probably benign small nodular densities for which six-moth follow up mammograms are recommended
FOLLOW UP: 6 month

So, what that means I have a bunch of little lumps with a diameter smaller than one number on a credit card. Because mine are smooth and they don't have common characteristics of cancerous tumor, I was given a BI-RAD score of 3. That means that probably nothing is wrong, but there is a 2% chance of cancer.

I asked the baby catchin' doc if this was his mom's, his wife's, his daughter's, his sister's mammogram report what would he do. He said he would tell them get checked again in 6 months. Unless it was going to make them freak out for the next 6 months, then he'd refer them to our local breast surgeon for a consult. I don't need a consult with the boob slicer. Not knowing what the report meant was keeping me up. Now that it has been explained to me- I'm sleeping just fine.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Your Boobs, A Year-long Commitment.

We are only one-third of the way through October. I bet you are already sick of pink. Too bad. We only have 31 days to talk to you about your boobs and I am going to make the best of it. I have compiled some information about mammography, breast exams and lowering your breast cancer risk. Enjoy!

Breast Cancer Screening Guidelines
(From the American Cancer Society)

Yearly mammograms are recommended starting at age 40 and continuing for as long as a woman is in good health.

Clinical breast exam (CBE) should be part of a periodic health exam, about every 3 years for women in their 20s and 30s and every year for women 40 and over. Women should know how their breasts normally feel and report any breast change promptly to their health care providers.

Breast self-exam (BSE) is an option for women starting in their 20s.

Women at high risk (greater than 20% lifetime risk) should get an MRI and a mammogram every year. Women at moderately increased risk (15% to 20% lifetime risk) should talk with their doctors about the benefits and limitations of adding MRI screening to their yearly mammogram. Yearly MRI screening is not recommended for women whose lifetime risk of breast cancer is less than 15%.

Breast Cancer Facts & Figures 2009-2010 (PDF)

Four Ways to decrease your risk of Breast Cancer

Be as lean as possible without being underweight. A healthy body mass index is defined as being above 18.5 but no greater than 25. Women closer to the lower end of the healthy weight range have the most protection from breast cancer.

Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day.
If you can't do that, at least do some. Some activity is better than none, but the more, the better.

Limit alcohol consumption.
If you drink at all, limit your intake to one serving a day.
New mothers should breast-feed exclusively for up to six months -- the evidence is convincing that mothers who breast-feed reduce their risk for breast cancer.

For more Breast Health information try

Now, here is a non-pervy Self Breast Exam video- get yer learnin' on!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Yes, I Blogged My Mammogram.

The following is a mixture of tweets, photos and my some thoughts about the mammogram I had today. I will post my vlog attempt later, as I am a iMovie doofus.

11:20am Heading out. Feels weird to not wear deodorant. #twammogram
My hospital has a gym, physical therapy office and Women's Imaging Center in a separate building. It's called the Wellness Center.
Second floor- boob squshing! #twammogram
Sitting in the waiting room with my pal Stacy. She just had the squeeze! #twammogram
This is my co-worker, Stacy. She was walking out as I was walking in. She stayed in the waiting room with me to offer support.
Off with the bra!#twammogram
I was taken into a little room, asked to undress from the waist up and put on a hospital gown, opened to the front. Then I headed into the next room and saw the Boob Squisher:
Front shots done. Now for the sides.#twammogram Here is my boob in the machine:
Side view done! #twammogram
It hardly took anytime at all. In fact, it would have gone faster, but I was tweeting and snapping photos. My mammographer was awesome. She thought it was a little weird that I was taking photos and texting the whole time- but she went with it!

Colleen is the rockingest boob smusher! #twammogram
Then I went back into the little room and got dressed. When I put my bra back on, I felt something weird. I forgot to remove my nipple markers.

Almost forgot to remove my nipple markers! #twammogram

As I walked out of the changing room, I saw a big basket filled with breast cancer awareness loot and a bucket filled with pink flowers. The receptionist told me to take whatever I wanted.

They're giving out pink carnations, note pads, pink ribbon magnets, calendars, mints! You can totally rake it in! #twammogram

I grabbed a breast self exam dealio to hang in my shower, a nail file, a pink ribbon magnet for my fridge and some mints. Then I went out to my car to read some tweets and answer questions.

It was 3 views for each boob, wouldn't have taken as long if I hadn't stopped to tweet and snap pics. #twammogram

OMG! These boob smoosh mints are fricken yummy! #twammogram
On the ride home, I snapped a pic of my nipple marker!
I'm totes going to make Mr. Misha snap a pic of me with my nipple markers on! Out on my shirt, of course. #twammogram
When I got home, my mom, Mr. Misha, my neighbor, his mother, his daughter and his niece were all waiting for me. I had them snap a photo of me with my new pasties!
My post-mammogram homecoming was hysterical! Going to blog now! #twammogram
Then we put the nipple markers on Mr. Misha:
Then we stuck the markers on my mom:
We tried to stick them on one of the three dogs that were in the living room, but they were too excited and couldn't sit still.

Overall, it was pretty easy. It didn't hurt. There was a tiny bit of discomfort from stretching my boobs, but it wasn't bad at all.

Now I just have to wait for the results.....

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Amy Wood, TV Newcaster and Patron Saint of Breastesses!

Here are two #Twammogram TV spots that aired in South Carolina! Thank you Amy for helping spread the word!

Are Your Boobs Uninsured?

One obstacle women face to get a mammogram is access. Some are uninsured, some can't afford their deductible or co-pay. So I have created a state-by-state directory to help women find free or low-cost mammograms in their area. Please pass this on to those you think might find this helpful.

New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
South Carolina
South Dakota
West Virginia

In new boob news, #Twammogram now has a
Facebook Page!

Now, to make you smile. If you have ever been to the Netherlands or know a Dutch person, this will make you smile. A breast cancer awareness PSA from The Netherlands:

Yes, I'm Still Talking About Boobs.

Well, there it is. The Twammogram avatar, brought to you by Mr. Misha. It's sexy, it's fun, it's pink and it comes with an iPhone! I think it will be all the rage. Please feel free to steal it for your own use, or if you are the creative type- make one yourself. Perhaps one for Blackberry?

So I was sitting at work last night, waiting for the 9pm bus of pregnant women to roll in, and I remembered- My still camera lets me shoot video! So today I am going to charge up my lefty-liberal, tree-hugging, rechargeable batteries so I can get all multimedia with my boobs.

Of course, because of this- I will now have to put on make-up, fix my hair and wear something presentable. This is not how I roll lately- this is a big deal. Under any other circumstances, all I would do to prepare for a mammogram would be shower, brush my teeth, put my hair into a ponytail, throw on a bra, a t-shirt, some flipflops and some yoga pants. But I am gonna get all fancy- FOR YOU! And your boobs.

Tomorrow is the big day for me. The girls are going into the vice and having their picture taken. I'll post all the video, photos and tweets here as soon as I get back! Stay tuned!

Right in the middle of writing this blog post- I did a phone interview about #Twammogram! Crazy, right? As soon as it is published, I will post a link. I am pretty sure I was the dorkiest person ever interviewed by that reporter. I really should have had some caffeine before talking with her.

I am all over the place with this blog post. I really don't know how to put it back on track. So I will just end it with this video from my new Twitter friend, Amy Wood. Listen to why she is so passionate about #Twammogram:

Monday, October 05, 2009

Misha Uses Her Breasts For Good, Instead Of Evil.

It all started out so innocently with a Facebook status update by my Twitter gal pal Laura:

Then it moved on to Twitter.

We came up with a hashtag, a way to mark tweets so they can be searched, indexed, catogorized, etc.


Mr. Misha is working on an avatar involving a pink bra, boobies and an iPhone.

Then Laura made a video:

Monday, the Twammogram fever started to spread. Lisa G(A Twammogram Hero!) and Laura started contacting celebrities and media folks to help spread the word. TPM's Christina Bellantoni, Comedian Baratunde Thurston and Academy Award Winning Actress Marlee Matlin all helped spread the word! It was very exciting.

Then something I never expected happened. We started getting messages from women who said they were afraid or had forgotten to make their mammogram appointment. Those who were afraid said they felt like they could do it now that they had the support of the 'twitterverse'. Those who had been putting it off, or kept forgetting, got on the phone right then and made appointments. But the best thing of all, those who weren't getting a mammogram because they were uninsured were put in touch with programs that provide free or low cost mammograms.

Who knew that something two goofballs (or dorkasauruses, as Laura says) joking around about their fear of cancer & boob squishing and their Twitter addiction could start something so cool.

I am going to make an attempt at Vlogging- a Misha first because it requires that I do something with my hair and apply makeup. So stay tuned!


The Twammogramomentum is spreading!
Laura's Blog
Famous South Carolina Newscaster, Amy Wood's Blog
Follow Twammogram on Twitter!