Maybe I should be posting this on my old blog. Maybe I should try to combine the two.. I just don’t know. If you’ve never read my old blog, it started as a way for me to cope with my diagnosis of thyroid cancer. It became just general life stories as my checks became more infrequent and my diagnosis approached the 5 year cancer free mark. If you want some background, head over to the old blog and read through my 2009 posts. Are you caught up now? Good.
Fast forward to my appointment with a new endocrinologist and he asked the question “Has anyone ever told you that you are cancer free?”
No… they haven’t. I guess I assumed with undetectable TG levels I was clear even without the scans. Sure I’ve had neck ultrasounds with enlarged lymph nodes but no biopsies. It was more of a watch and wait approach. Again, my TG levels were undetectable so this felt like a reasonable approach. Sure I had nagging doubts about being told the RAI uptake in my lung was nothing or “took care of anything that could have been there.” I tried not to think about the possibility of recurrence even though recurrence rates are as high as 30%. I’m fine… right??
Today I get a CT of my chest to follow up on that lung uptake from 5 years ago. I’m terrified that it’s not fine. While I’m there, they are also doing a neck ultrasound to follow up on those enlarged lymph nodes. I’m upset to think that the watch and wait approach might not have been the best thing. We have no reason to expect the worst at this point. Logically, I know that my TG levels are a pretty good indication that there isn’t anything going on, but I find cancer to be its own beast. Cancer makes its own rules.
Today I’m falling apart. My emotions range from anxiety to anger to admonishing myself for getting so emotional and not resting in the logic. I feel like I need to perform well on these tests but all I can do is lay there under the machines. I can’t just crack open a book and study to increase my chance of a good report. I won’t know my results until the 13th yet my future rests on what happens today….
Will I need more surgery?
Will I need more RAI?
Will I finally be declared cancer free?
I’m trying to stay strong, but sometimes it’s just so damn hard. I’m a weepy mess and my 19 month old daughter doesn’t understand. She looks at me quizzically and then laughs. I pull her close to tell her how much I love her and I take comfort in her cuddles. I need to be strong and be present for her because she needs her mommy. She needs mommy to play and laugh and comfort her through her day. So I’m pulling it together (even if it is just for short bursts of time). I’m taking deep breaths and putting on my mommy hat.
Lord knows the mommy hat is infinitely better than the cancer patient hat any day.