I’m doing it again. Writing a post that I have no intention of hitting “publish” on until I have updated test results.
I’ve been doing this blog thing for two years now, and I considered letting go of my vanity URL, but evidently I’m still vain enough to keep it. I put it up for a FB “vote” a month or two ago, and people still seem to be interested in my continued writing, but there was one reaction, from my Dad, that I haven’t publically addressed. (Although I have had this convo with him)
He said, “…it’s time to move on. I’m sure you’ll find a new cause.”
The thing is, although I’m sure I will continue to find causes that I’m passionate about, there is no chance I am now, or possibly ever will be, ready to move on.
My point to him was that I’m still dealing with Tamoxifen & it’s nasty side effects every day… and I will be on some kind of hormone treatment for at least three more years.
Once I AM fully in menopause, I’ll still be years earlier than my friends. I’ve said for a long time that my favorite kind of baby is someone else’s, because you can give them back, but it still makes my heart hurt just a little sometimes knowing I won’t have another kid. We’ve always said we don’t want to screw this one up, but having hit the lottery of awesome children the first time, there’s always the, “what if,” factor. Would another one have been as awesome as this one? We’ll never know.
And then there are the risks that are still out there.
Wednesday morning, I had a pelvic MRI. So if we’re counting, we’ve MRI’d the boobs, the head, and now they’re looking at my ovaries.
Earlier this month, the same week I met with my usual medical oncologist for the northern lady parts, I also met with the gynecological oncologist, Dr. Hipps. (Seriously, that’s her name!)
I’ve seen her a few times, as she’s been helping me deal with the Tamoxifen side effects in my southern lady parts. Last year she had me do a transvaginal pelvic ultrasound, and this year we did a follow up. This year they noticed something they missed last year, a 1.4 cm hypoechoic lesion on my left ovary. They went back to last year’s imaging, and it was there then as well, and since it’s the same size, shape, etc. as one that was harder to see last year & has no evidence of blood flow, it’s not likely that it’s just part of the normal menstrual cycle.
My doc actually called & told me since it was so stable it likely wasn’t a big deal, but that she wanted an MRI to be safe. I didn’t need to cancel my trip to Washington DC for work, but could schedule it when I got back. So it’s now 20 days since it was seen on the ultrasound, and I wait.
And as I write this post on Wed afternoon, I got a call from the nurse, saying that I may not even hear back until tomorrow… although Dr. Hipps has called me in the evening before, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that even if the result comes in late, I’ll hear today. <NOTE: Heard back in the middle of a meeting on Thursday AM- they are just functional cysts, actually on right AND left ovaries, nothing to worry about! WHEW!>
But this will likely not be my last scare.
Once a cancer survivor, always a survivor. It’s not something from which most people can simply move on.
Today’s line from a song has little to do with the title, but the opening lines of Love Song still fit:
- Head under water, and you tell me, to breathe easy for a while.
- Breathing gets harder, even I know that.
The thing is, I’ve found something or had pain & been told “probably not a big deal” twice before. My “sounds like gall stones” turned out to be a ruptured appendix that I walked around with for a week. And everyone here knows how the “probably a cyst” lump I found turned out.
So although I will hope for the best, I will prepare for the worst.
One more thing in case you missed it, Stuart Scott gave one of the best acceptance speeches in the history of ever as he received the Jimmy V award at the ESPY’s a few weeks ago. And one line will likely live on for survivors and their co-surviving loved ones for ever.
- “When you die, it doesn’t mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and in the manner which you live.” – Stuart Scott
So with that as a measure, I’m just going to have to find more and more ways to win.