Breast Cancer Update

No, I haven’t been off to the doctor yet to have my boobs once again pressed and pushed between two glass panels. I haven’t had the wonderful sonogram that pushes my tissues and creates days of pan. It just stinks. I said it was an update so here is what is going on. The lump feels bigger. I am having lots of issues regarding coping with the fact maybe it’s bigger. It’s also lots of vomiting when stressed, and hair loss and so much more. I tried to get my hair done and I just couldn’t do it. What if it all falls out and I spent all the money to have it done? What if I need the money for medication? What if I can’t afford the medication? What if what if what if!!! So tired…..Okay it’s short but it is what it is.

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The results

Well after the visit to the surgeon here is what I have learned. Radiologists have an international scale to rate the lumps. It is called a BIRAD Scale. I have no idea what the initials stand for. The lumps are graded on a scale of 0 to 6. Zero means absolutely no concerns — 100% benign. Six means so far as the radiologist can tell 100% cancerous. My number is a 3. So in my head that means I am either half way there or half way to safe. The surgeon recommended six months to wait and have a redo. If I changed my mind he would go ahead and schedule the biopsy. We have so far decided that waiting may not be the worst idea. He also explained that six months won’t make a difference because if I have it six months away from now I will still in such an early stage should it prove cancerous that I won’t have anything life threatening or changing. He also explained that if it comes back fine and I wait then have to do it again well, it can be harder on my body. So I just decided that waiting is okay….Hopefully all of you will stick around for that!

I am also now on synthroid for my thyroid and supposedly I should start feeling the effects in six weeks….so I suppose in six weeks I will be losing weight like a champ. Stay tuned for further developments!

Sorry for the absence

Okay so I have been off for awhile. I promised to chronicle my experience of waiting for the diagnosis….here is what has happened since the debacle at the hospital with the additional views mammogram and consequent ultrasound. 

Thyroid lumps….yeah, gotta love those! Is my thyroid slow or fast? Is it still lumpy? If everything says I am in normal ranges why am I feeling like crapola? Well, I have answers for that. Most likely my thyroid is still a lumpy mess, except THOSE particular lumps are tiny. Maybe they will go away as they do in most cases…GREAT….my neck feels like i am choking all of the time. I have been in pain with my neck since Saturday of this week. I call the doctor’s office. It’s not they lumpy thyroid, We’ll call him Harry…Harry is still within normal range. Okay, doctor person, I am still tired, choking and feeling like a lump of coal….REFERRAL! Seriously I feel like I am awaiting the Spanish Inquisition except no excepts them….So now I await doctor number 3 an ENT…..great, in the meantime….

I was referred to (yes again) to an endocrinologist for my thyroid…..no luck getting the referral or the appointment. So back to original doctor and I say, “PLEASE put me on something to deal with Harry, only she doesn’t know we have named the lumpy thyroid harry…..so i can’t call him by his name….” We go through what it could mean if the endo guy decides to call. I roll my eyes and say, but if you start the medicine Harry doesn’t need endo guy. She agrees and now I have something.

I have lost weight. I am not trying so they have determined it is because my throat is sore and I don’t want to eat…..loss of appetite and weight loss without trying but i am still eating….sure thing. I am not a lot because I just don’t want to. Food makes me feel nauseous even when I want it.

Tomorrow is the pre-op for the biopsy. Now I am stressing. maybe the pain in my neck isn’t from Harry but something else entirely not linked to a doctor thing at all….stress….Sure let’s go with stress….

Now on top of all that, and yes I forgot to tell her about it….i have pain in my armpit and my side. It feels puffy and swollen and then it doesn’t …..I think my brain is working overtime. I know this because I dreamed a rather odd dream about having a mass ripped out (yes, ripped, not surgically removed or neatly cut away, RIPPED). The man in the dream (see ripped women wouldn’t rip anything like a breast at any cost) said well here’s your cancer! I got it all….Well, thanks for getting it all! Now can I shut my brain off?

Thanks for listening! Keep you posted….

Health Update

This is what I have been told by the radiologist: “It’s possibly benign”. Well, NO KIDDING! I know they can’t tell but seriously if this is the best the ultrasound can do then why not just do the biopsy as an option instead of the ultrasound which is about as conclusive as my layperson’s guess? On top of that the whole six month follow up with nodules on my thyroid is just another piss off. 

Staying positive and funny is getting harder these days as too many people want me to be happy when they have no idea why I feel so tired and upset. This isn’t something that you want everyone to know, says the woman writing  a blog! I have some anonymity as most of you haven’t met me ever. It’s okay if we did and I would be happy to say hello! 

I guess I haven’t allowed myself to be angry. I mean truly angry at the thought of me having cancer. I haven’t allowed myself to be angry about much of anything and I won’t be so burdensome here either. I am tired all of the time and wonder how much that plays into me being able to not be angry or even cope effectively.

I did get my botox for my migraines. I had a horrendous headache today and I am told that’s normal. So much for minus headaches but then I was also told it can take two or three treatments to be effective. I did speak to my neurologist about the test results because well, I didn’t want one treatment to interfere with the another. He is helping me see an endocrinologist for my thyroid and he said every so cheerfully in his wonderfully rich British accent, “Ah! It’s all okay. They are going to back benign and you are normal! Besides, you are a strong woman and this won’t get you down!” He made me smile and just feel better. It’s awesome how confident he was but that has waned into just being in limbo.

I am glad you are reading this and following along. I hope that should you ever need to understand what the feelings are behind all the medical crap of lumps in the chest bumps you will find some answers and strength here.

What Happened next….

What happened next after the phone call of “Hi there, your lumps in your chest bumps have grown and changed?”

There was a tremendous amount of worry. They was fear. There was pain and upset. My head was spinning and it was just too much but I got scheduled for a second mammogram which means additional views. So here come the phone calls about the scheduling. I also received a letter from the Women’s Diagnostic Center at our hospital. Now I have two appointments for the same thing one close and one further off in the week. I called and confirmed the time and date for the earliest appointment. Then I get a third call…..They are updating the computer system and have to put me in again. Fine and dandy I already knew this was happening. I happily give the nice registration lady all the information required to sign my life away along with all the insurance company information. No big deal right? Right! Onward and Upward as they say. Husband was going to work which was fine with me as this wasn’t going to be a big deal because I wasn’t going to get any answers…what they fail to say is you will however get more questions.

Husband decides to come along for the joy ride and we take off to the hospital and from work. That’s okay because in the end it’s only going to take an hour and we can spend our afternoon relaxing and forgetting our worries for a minute. This is a wonderful day, only it isn’t. By the way I was also scheduled for my thyroid to be scanned with an ultrasound. We arrive early because I didn’t have my insurance card information with me when I got the famous computer system call. So i had over my information. Things are great and we are on schedule in high spirits. Maybe that was our mistake, arriving in good spirits and being early. I have to say I don’t mind waiting for a bit and understand that sometimes things happen so when there was a 20 minute wait I was okay. I am sort of patient when I need to be. Okay, so now I am still waiting and the only answer I have has varied from wrong order, mixed up orders, cancelled orders, misdiagnosis, and finally “We can’t get anyone to send in a correct order!” I was freaking out. Wait! A misdiagnosis? “No, ma’am what I meant to say is the order doesn’t say the right thing.” WHAT?! 

So now an hour later (and one ultrasound later of my thyroid) no orders and no one to write one! I offer to go upstairs to get the order myself. I arrived in the doctor’s office to a frustrated staff and no one knowing how to print a new order. The computer technician is there. After waiting another 30 minutes for the order. The tech said, “You can blame me. It’s all my fault.” Not a good thing to say so I informed him if he couldn’t find a button that said “print” he was going to pay my fees for missing patients. He magically found the button. So a very worried husband and myself go downstairs to the Women’s Diagnostic Center with orders in hand. Now, I go in for additional views. This is where they put your lumpy chest bumps into a vise and squeeze until you think your eyes are going to pop out while you hold your breath and try to remain upright and calm. I get a glimpse of the additional views. They look ominous and mean. This isn’t comforting, nor is the cheerful tech who says have a seat out front and let me talk to the doctor to see if we need ultrasound scans too…..WAIT?! WHAT?! I thought this was just another screen and things were going to be great….alas, not so….

Another 2 hours go by. Another tech comes out to inform me that the doctor who reads the scans is leaving and they are feverishly trying to get the orders. I sigh and tell her I would love some answers and the week is already heavily scheduled and was there any way to get it done. She smiled and said she would talk to the radiologist. So off she goes and back she comes in short order. She then comes back and tells me he will read the ultrasound if I can get the order first thing tomorrow. I don’t bother to change back into my clothes. I am angry and worried and decide to go upstairs. OH! Least I forget they couldn’t get me in the system downstairs. So the same tech I wanted to brain upstairs has to come downstairs and fix it….He was a bit skittish but he decides that he will do it quickly.

Well, the ultrasound did get done. I am now waiting for results for the breast one. I have the one for the thyroid….more lumps. I made the decision to ask for a biopsy on all of them. Why waste a minute. I am tired and worried. I am tired and scared. I am unhappy and just want this resolved. Thank you for listening and following me.

On a side note if I do undergo treatment my family has decided to shave their heads….I will post the pictures!

Unexpected Changes

Originally I started this blog about funny things happening when I exercise. I have posted a few of my frustrations and worries. I haven’t posted any doctor results because I hadn’t had any until today, well actually yesterday….

So here are the results: All blood work was normal except for my Vitamin D was low (mildly) and my cholesterol was out of whack. No big surprise there. The thyroid test was fine as was the glucose and a hundred other things. The doctor said no big deal with the thyroid test being “normal” she expected that so I was scheduled for a ultrasound of my thyroid. Again no big deal.  I thought things were great. I had forgotten or mostly had any way about the mammogram I had done. 

I shouldn’t have forgotten it. It should not one but two lumps. Okay, I said, not a big deal right? It could be a big deal. This is why….I had surgery back in 2010 for a hysterectomy. Well, I figured you’re looking at my parts so get a mammogram done too….the doctor failed to tell to me there were two lumps at that time. Now why are the same two lumps a big deal today? Because they have grown and changed and something is definitely wrong…..

I don’t know if any of my posts will be funny. I don’t know if I will be changing from yes, I am getting thinner and healthier to yes I am getting thinner but not because I am trying and healthy but because I am sick and weak and tired and have all these chemicals floating around. Yeah, it’s big leap but I need the exercise! (See? Funny stuff!) If you are with me about the weight maybe you will stick around and see how my story goes. I am certain I will survive it. I have too much left to do die off and it’s too early to worry about it being cancer although that is why I am writing because I am scared and worried and sad and so many other things. 

Here is a bit of my life:

I have six sons! Yup SIX! My oldest is Joshua. He is married to a beautiful young lady named Amy who gave birth to my wonderful granddaughter Sophie who is now 3! I have another son, Gabriel. He is a great kid and sells HerbalLife and works at a local restaurant. Not married so hurry up ladies before he’s gone! (See…more humor)…Christian is studying to be a neurosurgeon, sorry, ladies but he is taken by a lovely young woman named Jamie. Then there is my stepson, Mathieu, also available!!! Aaron who is in high school and Ethan who is the baby and a whopping 9 years old. I have a husband, who loves me very much and a father who lives with us or us with him or something along those lines! We have two dogs, Mellow, a toy poodle and Lucky, a white schnauzer. We have a wonderful tiny black cat named Tuesday and she is just fine thank you very much….

So that’s a bit about me….The above is the reason I am scared. Yeah, even the dogs and cat. I don’t want to be so tired and sick that I can’t be around them. They make me happy. So my dearest readers of the blog here’s to chronicling my experience and my scare…maybe that’s it is…a scare of “Hey Lady! You’re boobs are just lumpy!” and not, “I’m sorry to tell you….”

This is not the recommended weight loss plan! (see…more humor still…..)

The Art of Running

I have recently increased my activity to include running….I am proud and worried all at once. I had surgery, actually four of them and was told by the doctor if I chose to run again I would have the same problems with organ prolapse as before. Now I am a worry wart by nature so this was not encouraging. I have since discovered that many many many women with organ prolapse returned to running sans any other issues. Why do doctors do this to us? 

The same doctor recommended I lose weight! You just took my one activity away that I enjoy enough to do on a regular basis and now you want me to lose weight?! As many of you have read I am working on weight loss. I am also scheduling a physical in the next week because my battle isn’t going well or at least as well as I would like it to. 

I hit my first runner’s high in years! Yes, I have been terrified for several years to even attempt the effort of running. I have walked until I can walk around the world non-stop! So now I am running at least 10 minutes. Sounds like such a failure but in reality for me it is a triumph! I don’t JUST run for 10 minutes although there are days that would more than enough. I also continue to walk the rest of the distance/time and build and build and build my endurance. 

I also have found out something interesting about exercise. Did you know that even if your mind has dealt with the emotional responses you have to trauma, life events, etc that your body has remembered them and they sit stagnate until you…..EXERCISE! I have always felt like crying when I get particularly intense in my exercise routine so I stop. I think why am I doing this? Now I know. I have things that have happened, deaths, trauma, life events, that i have dealt with in my head and heart but not with my body. I am now more excited about my own personal theory that I have this weight because of these of the issues left on my body….so maybe isn’t a physical that I need but the actual exercise and tears that come with it? Hope this enlightened you!

TAADAAAA

Okay, not so much but here we go again with the blogging because I have finished moving and will resume moving again in a couple of weeks to a final apartment…

I have found a nice gym nearby and began working out….I suddenly remember now why I hate working out in a gym. I don’t think intimidation is the right word, more like sadness. When you USED TO COULD, and now you are having difficulty and feel like “can’t” is the only word in your vocabulary they gym is the worst possible motivator for some, especially me!

I see people my age or younger or older and they are like not even breaking a sweat and I am grunting (on the inside!!!!) like a little piggy wanting to eat more ice cream and straining I just get discouraged. So since this is about motivation I decided that I can’t compare myself to them! I can only compare myself to me. I am still stuck at the five mile mark for the bicycle and can’t manage more than a mile on the treadmill walking, sadly, but I am happy to be getting somewhere with my workouts. I am learning I can do it. I am learning that I don’t look like I used to. I am learning that if I just stick it out I can do it.

Okay so this isn’t one of the funny ones, but I have a feeling the more I got to the gym the funnier this will become!

Weight Loss is Happening

I am still on the weight loss side of things meaning I am still losing weight and fitting into my “real” clothes again. I am so thrilled that I splurged and bought shoes…and jeans that two weeks ago were too tight and now are fitting just right but getting on the loose side!! Woo HOO!

I have also found that I have something called Vertigo. Yea. Go me. NOT! So many causes but I have found that as of today if I take an Allegra D it seems to help more than the no-spin but sleep medication I was given which seems to fit the idea that I am having inner ear problems.

Also up is the costume contest I have been so thrilled about getting into. I am worried how I will look but have some “foundation” garments that will help with the weight loss belly thing I got going on. I will post pictures once I compete so look for them soon!

Losing Weight, Reincarnation and Sewing

Okay something really positive to start off….. I lost three pounds and no I am searching high and low for those bad boys! The scale at the house has finally decided to stop acting all crazy and yes, I weighed on different scales. Stupid scales….

Reincarnation, whether you believe in it or not here is a thought come back as a cockroach or a human with cockroach like abilities. These things never die!!! I mean seriously. I sometimes think if they had the strength even the shoe wouldn’t phase them. I mean science has frozen them and they come back as if they had never been frozen. Seriously? Frozen and viola defrost and you’re good?

What made me think of this? Well, I was in the bathroom getting ready for my shower when BAM! There it was in all it’s buginess. It is horrid. I can’t them. I would have normally run out of the room, but well given my situation at the time not a likely or reasonable thing to do. Normally I am not very reasonable with these things lurking and skittering around. They are just all sorts of creepy and seeing as it was staring at me with its bug eyes ready to leap into my mouth in my opinion which well, we all know they plot to do as soon as they move with their tiny little suitcases for the long haul, I wasn’t going to risk not killing this invader from hell. Here it is staring at me like it was daring me to do something like move.

Now before I continue with my next statement let me answer your question that will be playing in your head, “I really have no idea why it was there.” (not the bug the thing I am about to use) So I found a can of oven cleaner next to me. (I think my better half thought it was glass cleaner the cans look similar but hey, what do I know?) So I sprayed it. And sprayed it. It did the backstroke in this stuff! The freaking backstroke! It worked it’s little heinous legs and swam in this sea of foam. I said to myself alright then I have something that will kill you. I poured CLR on it. CLR! DO YOU HEAR ME?!  CLR FOR CALICUM LIME AND RUST REMOVAL. WEAR GLOVES OR RISK BURNING YOUR SKIN OFF CLR!  It seemed to huff and puff a bit and I thought it died. I won’t touch the thing and hubby was already snoozing so no shower before bed for me. I went to sleep secure in the thought that no harm would come to me or have bugs crawling into my mouth or hair or bed or anywhere else.

Now, don’t get me wrong it’s not like I have a bug infested house filled with these little bastards. I don’t. In fact, I think I might get ten a year in my house which is pretty good since I have a ton trees near my house and these “palmetto bugs” which actually live in the trees lurking to fly into your hair and torture you should be more common are not. I don’t have the little german kind either. So when I get one of these things, it’s terrible and traumatic.

I woke up early the next morning to prepare for my shower and knowing my handsome spouse had slept equally well and was still snoozing when I woke up I suspected nothing. NOTHING. I pull back the shower curtain believing in my heart of hearts that I would find a dead bug to wash down the drain but NO, LIKE MICHAEL MEYERS FROM all horror movies it wasn’t there. Did I shower, well, yes. I was skeptical, yes. I will find this super bug and kill it with my shoe provided he’s done using my weight machine.

So yeah, these things survive EVERYTHING….and swim in it. I think if they were nuked they would swim in the waste and laugh at us for our inability to withstand environmental stressors like they do. They are waiting to take over. I am sure of it.

Sewing, I will end this with another triumph.  I finished a costume I am working on to compete in this March. I will post details once the costume is revealed along with my weight loss….please!