Wide Awake at Four in the Morning: Dealing with a Breast Cancer Diagnosis

Wide Awake at Four in the Morning: Dealing with a Breast Cancer Diagnosis
Editor's Note: Breast Cancer News welcomes Breast Cancer Blogger and Patient Expert Nancy Briar to our team. In her ongoing blog column, Nancy explores the complex issues and experiences related to a breast cancer diagnosis, and seeks to connect with other patients and understand their personal experiences as well. Wide awake at four in the morning. But not for the reason you might be thinking. Sometimes I do still wake up in the middle of the night, panicked that I’m going to leave my daughter motherless or inflict early widowhood on my husband. Those nights don’t happen very often anymore. I’m awake because I’m in Paris, still a bit unaccustomed to the time difference from California and decidedly not accustomed to rich late-night dinners. This blog post is dedicated to all the newly diagnosed, to those of you who might be terrified that you’re not going to survive to experience the pleasures life has in store for you. I offer my sleeplessness in Paris as hope for your recovery. Less than two years ago, I was bald, bruised, and exhausted. But I’m not anymore. My husband and I discovered my lump in December 2013, and I went to the doctor the very next day. “Nothing to worry about,” she said. “Your lump doesn’t meet the characteristics of cancer.” The lump was hard, the size of an almond, and my fingers drifted to it the way my tongue explores an ache in a tooth. Just to be on the safe side, I scheduled a mammogram, but the only available opening was on New Year’s Eve. “You really know how to party,” my husband said. My diagnosis was Triple Negative Breast Cancer, the disease’s most aggressive form, and the very next day, Obamacare kicked in. Our family’s insurance, the policy we’d had for twenty years, was re
Subscribe or to access all post and page content.


  1. Hi Nancy,
    What a story. I had to read it a few times. So much stress and yet you are awake in Paris at the time of the writing. I don’t know why you haven’t accumulated tons of comments. I have a new website that offer breast cancer support related to bras, breast forms, garments and other products. My background includes knowledge of insurance benefits, but in your case I can see that was not an option at first. Hopefully you have acquired some insurance to help you with your expenses by now. I have to repeat…what a story! http://pinkribbonconsulting.com/silicone-breast-prosthesis/

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.