Clearly I’ve not abided by my commitment to post weekly, but would like to get back to it. Another one of my rules I’m going to break – keeping a chronological order. When (if) the day comes I end up putting all these thoughts into a book, I’ll go back and sift. Until then I’ll make sure to denote if the story/thought is past or present so I don’t cause the waves of panic like I started with a facebook update today. Yes, unfortunately, the one I’m about to share is very much present.
I suppose I really shouldn’t feel like I was hit by a semi after unfortunate doctor’s visits anymore. Good visits the past two years have become an exception; not the rule. Apparently this semi was carrying two trailers, when I thought it was only the one that nailed me last August.
I’m back to my old stomping grounds in Northern California, which also means my “old” (read set two of three sets) of doctors. I was due for a follow-up ultrasound at UCSF from the first trailer last week. The typical lube and press uncomfortably on my neck took a standard 40 minutes. I was stoked when released without being biopsied because, as I’ve learned, biopsies mean abnormalities. Biopsies mean something is amiss. Biopsies are not my friend.
Given the breezy test, I assumed my endocrinologist appointment today would be another medicine level adjustment, fondle of the neck, and I’d be on my way. I should have picked-up that in the week in since, I’d been referred to and taken-on by a semi-retired-works-one-day-a-week-takes-on-very-few-patients-one-of-the-best-neck-surgeons-in-the-country doctors doesn’t speaking to a promising outcome. But nope, I just thought, “Wow, that will be so wonderful if we need to do something in the future.” I didn’t think the future was now.
So what did we learn today? We learned about calcification. Calcification: the reason we didn’t need to biopsy, as the lymph node showed cancer and needs to be gone. Since I’m pretty damn close to my maximum on radiation, we get to do the good ole fashion slice and remove. As one of my friends said today, “It’s okay, you’ve been here before. You know the drill.” Looks like surgery is on the horizon. Joy.
Another friend, who is always overly concerned about my happiness in everything, asked how I was feeling. Mad? Sad? Scared? I’ve decided on shaken. The best way to describe it is as if someone took me by the shoulders, tossed me around like a ragdoll then expected me to walk normally. It feels pretty damn close to how I felt after the 1989 earthquake – shell-shocked and wanting to speak to no one. Mute. My insides are shaking and I’ll cover my eyes in RayBans to avoid anyone reading through my eyes to see what’s actually going on.
When does the end of “everything will be okay” ever happen?