She made me laugh, because she said "I don't want to bother, because I'm sure you get asked all the time..."
I laughed because that couldn't be farther from the truth.
My close circle of family and friends check in regularly and follow my monthly doctor check ups, but beyond that, people have kept their distance. Reflecting on the question in her email, I realized that it actually might be very intimidating to ask someone for a health update. What if the answer is not good? Who wants to bring up bad news? Because then, there you are, facing a really awkward situation, right!?!
Well, the good news is that I'm giving you an update (so you don't have to ask ;) and there's good news too (so no awkward situation, you're welcome ;)!
Last week I met with my oncologist (aka Chemo Doc) and he announced that I have made it to another big marker in my post-cancer treatment!!!! This has actually come a little earlier than expected, but is based on my test results over the last 12 months.
Doc is moving my PET scan schedule from 4/per year to 2/per year!
This is a big confirmation that my oncology team believes we have BEAT this nasty cancer!
My last scan was in December. And that is the 4th scan confirming no sign of disease. My anemia is completely gone, and my red/white blood levels are higher than my pre-treatment levels.
This week marks exactly one year since my final chemotherapy infusion treatment.
Seems like a lifetime ago. That's a good thing I think ;)
Here is the general run down of the "other stuff"-
-still in menopause, hot flashes still 3-4x per day
-I seem to have NO immune system yet. I have had more cough/colds this last year than ever before, multiple rounds of anti-biotic without fail. Resulting in being sicker, longer. Going to pick up a 10 day anti-biotic and an inhaler today. Let's hope this works ;)
-Hair is growing back thicker. It is growing in, in stages, just like a babies hair fills in. I didn't think mine would be the same. Now, don't get me wrong, I would still not categorize my hair as THICK, it is just thick-ER than it was before. I still like it short, but realize that I think it makes me look older. I am still having fun letting it grow through the stages.
So, that is the great news and the "hmmm, interesting" news...
Now, I don't mean to worry you...but the next news I am going to share is, maybe, not so great.
Not bad, but just can't say good, because we don't know yet.
But I'm not worried....so you shouldn't be either.
(but can anyone who works in Pathology explain to me why it takes so long to get a report back??)
If you know me well, you know a weird fact about me is that my body likes to make cysts.
I had cystic acne as a teenager. Cortisone shots to remove facial cysts were the regular before any major performance or dance through high school. I was on high doses of Accutane in my early 20's as treatment, which worked. (Though they said it might come back someday.) More recently, I have had multiple cysts surgically removed from my scalp over the last few years. All of which has proved to be nothing more than a painful inconvenience.
Yesterday I had 6 stitches removed from my right cheek.
Today I have 3 Steri-strips (white tape-like bandages) holding a 1" slit in my face closed as it heals shut.
For weeks I have been battling a small dermatology nightmare.
In December I got a pimple on my cheek. Well, I thought it was a pimple. Then it turned into something ridiculous....
(my daughter tried to wipe it off my face, thinking it was a spot of jelly)
It was a huge purple lump. On my face. So attractive!! I have pictures!....but I'll spare you ;)
Some thought it was a mole, some thought it was a zit, some thought it wwwwwWTH....
I named it Enrique Iglasias, in honor of my celebrity facial defect counterpart.
(you might recall, he also had his removed)
My Dermotologist removed it last week, telling me he thinks it is cancerous. My Chemo Doc does not agree. I like facts. I await the pathology report.
The verdict is out until then.
Of course....I will let you know.
For now, know I find confidence in this- He was with me before, He is with me now, and He will be with me then.
I'm not worried, my wing man is with me everyday!!
Thank you all for thinking of me and praying for me over the last two years (especially) and some of you, over my lifetime. I know that you have intervened on my behalf.
My life is proof.
Thanks for asking!! Hope you don't regret it ;)