Me

Clouds are clearing the sky is bright

my-cosmic-valentine-a-very-special-dayToday is a very special day for me.  The sun is shinning, the sky is blue and the temperatures are low, the makings of a wonderful day.  I got up early showered and did the normal morning routine.  Next I prepared for yet another doctors appointment this time a follow-up to the endometrial ablation done July 19th.  This may not sound very special but indeed the day truly is.  Why you may ask?

SmileThe appointment went well, things seem to have gone well and all pathology benign thankfully.  Good news for anyone leaving a doctor’s office but for me much more.  See, for the first time in over 2 years I do not have the next surgery plans in the making.  I do not even have a doctor’s appointment scheduled.  I almost feel as if I am forgetting something since I have nothing to schedule or follow-up on. My life and my check book have been consumed for so long and now a breath of fresh air.  Not so fresh for the check book yet as there are still outstanding bills but we are close.

When I say consumed I thought maybe a quick recap was in order:

June 2011 Needle guided ultrasound biopsy leads to full surgical biopsy due to abnormal results.  More abnormal results found leading to the rest of the year spent with oncologists, genetic specialists, mammograms and breast MRI’s until decision finally made.

July 2, 2012 bilateral prophylactic mastectomy and DIEP flap reconstruction.

August 2012 Breast revision surgery

November 2012 Further reconstruction and revision.  Also in November the ever interesting colonoscopy and the memorable first pelvic ultrasound.

January and March 2013 further pelvic ultrasounds leading to the ablation in July.

Doctors appointments, follow-up appointments, blood work, scans tests and calls. In between it all worry, pain, tears, looks of pity from others and stress on the family. This has been my life for more than two years. I will be honest, today I have felt a little out of sorts.  I can not explain why.  It is almost like the medical issues have “defined” me for much of the recent past.  Maybe I am a bit reserved afraid that if I get too happy about it something bad will happen.  I am sure it will pass…as the reality sets in, doctor free.  I look forward to the future, with nothing planned except maybe a Disney trip!

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Me, Post-Op Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomy

Waiting for the call….

As 2012 began to wind down, my mobility had returned to almost normal.  Three surgeries were now a thing of the past, just a memory.  The scars from the bilateral prophylactic mastectomy and DIEP flap procedures were healing nicely and the aches were improving with every day.  I began to set my sights on 2013 and a new start, one without worries about cancer risks or surgery.

Then came a visit to the gynecologist in October.  Based on the findings of lobular carcinoma in situ during the BPM, the doctor felt it would be smart to have a pelvic ultrasound due to the link between breast cancer and ovarian cancer.

On November 7, 2012, my thoughts of a worry free 2013 quickly came to an end when complex cysts were found in my right ovary.   January 14, 2013 I repeated the ultrasound hoping for improvement but found worse news.  The cyst was still there and larger, one was now also located on the left and something was seen in the lining of my uterus.  Worry free 2013 was long gone! A biopsy was performed as was a CA-125 blood test.  Both came back showing no cancer.  Instead the item on the uterine lining looked to be a polyp.  An endometrial ablation was recommended.  I decided to wait until a third ultrasound could be performed so we could make a decision about the cysts at the same time.

April 2, 2013 I went for that final ultrasound.  After I did something I do not normally do, I made a list of questions.  I was done having ultrasounds every few months and wanted to be ready for a real conversation about moving forward. Questions such as, Do we remove the cysts in the ovaries at the same time as the ablation? Do we remove an entire ovary or both?  Do we go fully radical and remove it all?

I was prepared for everything except for what came next.  The call came along with the normal pleasantries, how was our trip to Disney?  How was I feeling?  Although I do personally like my doctor, I wanted the results.  She stated with a long “WELL”, I was a bit nervous.  She continued, “the cyst on the left is gone, and the one on the right has reduced in size”. Ugh, what?  Gone?  The words swirled for a second in my head until I finally realized, this was good news!  I actually said to her, “well that is good news, right?” No more ultrasounds!  Not so good news about the uterine lining which showed a new cyst/polyp but we already knew that would not correct itself.

SO, I have a pre-op appointment at the end of May to prepare for the endometrial ablation.   My list of questions went onto the trash. In the greater scheme of where I have been and what I was expecting, a minor surgery! I would much prefer to stay out of hospitals yet, compared to the alternatives, I am pleased, and thankful!

Me

Here we go again

Tomorrow I once again get to enjoy the wonders of modern technology in the form of a pelvic ultrasound.  This will be the third one in a period of about 5 months.  I am not worried about what they find because I expect that they will be about the same.  I expect the cysts will still be there, meaning we will need to talk about what comes next.  The polyp will still be there since that does not rectify itself.  An endometrial ablation was recommended but I decided to just wait until we got the results of this ultrasound before even continuing to discuss dealing with the polyp.

To say that the ultrasound is invasive is an understatement.  I am growing weary of them and would love to hear that the cysts have disappeared and all is well with the world.  Right after I expect to see pink unicorns and hear happy music playing in the background while money falls from the sky.  So in my mind the odds of the second statement occurring is just as likely as the first so I am not optimistic, although unicorns and falling cash would be very cool!

Until tomorrow I guess….