Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Remission is a Beautiful Word

I got the results from all my tests and everything looks good. This is extra good news, since I had a biopsy last week on another lump and it was giving me worry. Well that, and the fact that people are poking around in my insides looking for cancer.

On the 6th, I had blood work, a chest x-ray, a chest ultrasound, an abdomen ultrasound and a bone scan.  During the chest ultrasound the tech noticed that one of the lumps in my non-cancer boob had grown. It still looked benign (based on shape) but since it had grown, they wanted to check it. She did a fine needle aspiration in the hospital and pulled out what I can only describe as "black gunk". Her exact words: "I was not expecting that." Well, awesome. This story loses some drama, as you know everything turns out fine, but I didn't know that then. She said they would send it to the lab to test, just to be safe, and I got to spend a week worrying.

In truth I wasn't super worried. I knew the lumps were there, I knew they had been pretty closely examined back in September (MRI, mammogram, ultrasound) and I knew that in all likelihood, the test would come back benign. However, knowing something in your head and knowing something in your heart is not the same thing. Just like I knew that my odds of a reoccurrence, especially this close to finishing treatment, were low but I was still worrying about cancer being all over my body.

The past week has been long and I have been worried. I have combed the internet looking for answers I know it cannot give me. All I could do was wait, and I didn't want to write until I had something to say. I hoped it would be something good, and thankfully, it is.

I met with both my chemo oncologist and my surgeon today, who both had the same good news. Oddly enough, my surgeon never remembers me, but as soon as he sees Paul, he lights up. Today he actually said, when he laid eyes on Paul, "ah, now I know who you are." I mean, honestly, how many foreign women is this guy treating? Aren't I enough? Apparently, no. This isn't very good for my ego.

They do want to do some follow up on the lump in three months but it isn't cancer. He couldn't name it, but he isn't worried. There are many kinds of lumps that can make homes in boobs and I'm just glad this one had the good sense not to be cancer - I did not want to go down that path again. I had the realization today, that at least in the short term, I'm probably not going to be one of those "it's probably nothing" patients. Everything will be investigated and followed. In general, it's nice to know that people are keeping eyes out for problems; I just wish I wasn't in a position where a lookout was required. However, let's not dwell on that.

Tonight I'm focusing on the fact that I'm cancer-free and I have been for six months. The plan now: stay that way. Are you listening boobs? I will cut you off if you can't abide my rules!

1 comment:

  1. If I had a nickel for every time I had uttered the phrase, "Are you listening, boobs?"...