Saturday, December 7, 2013

eight minute update

what can i write in 8 minutes?  because it's 4:52 and i'm determined to start dinner no later than 5 p.m. and i'm determined that it will contain jerusalem artichokes because they are stacking up in the fridge and can no longer be ignored and i'm also determined that william will help me make dinner.  william who is currently watching a dinosaur documentary on netflix because his new career goal is to become a paleontologist.  (no longer a miner, he says.)

well, so, here goes... in 6 minutes now:

i finished up chemo.  did you know that?  surely you did.  i got some swelling around my eyes as a chemo going away present, but that's been gone for a long while now.

i had surgery.  did you know that?  probably you did.  they weren't brave enough (in the words of my surgeon) to simply go for a lumpectomy, because of the size of the original tumor... somewhere between 7-11 cm... and also that it had spread to surrounding lymph nodes.  at the same time, they don't do double mastectomies here, unless maybe you happen to have cancer in both breasts.  so, i had a single mastectomy.  any reconstruction i might choose to have does not happen here until a year has passed, so as to ensure everything's healed first.  so, for now, i'm becoming an expert in stuffing my bra.

i got my pathology report yesterday... the tumor was down to 7 mm at the time of surgery.  5 of 16 lymph nodes which were removed had had cancer in them, though two had no cancer by the time of surgery and the other three only contained single cancer cells... (from originally being at the 'macro metastases' level, so thought the surgeon).

and we've had so many good helpers here!  my dad and my stepmom, my mom and my aunt, my friend carrie who managed to put meals in our freezer and get her two cute little jet lagged children to sleep each night!  thank you, all of you!  we so appreciate it.  and now we are four and we are loving being four again, despite the dishes that don't magically disappear after dinner.

and how i feel?  good!  the surgery never really got me down, either mentally or physically.  but i certainly feel that i'm waiting on some of my energy to come back from me.  i can see why it would be scared away and it's not all done yet, this cancer treatment.  sometime after the new year i have radiation to look forward to, and i've begun taking tamoxifen, a hormone-blocking drug, which i can stop taking around thanksgiving 2023.  so... that will be a good thanksgiving!

well now, it's 5:03.  i have so many pictures, but no time.  dinner must be made and then eaten, little boys put to bed, dishes done...


Phyllis Noble said...

Thank you for those eleven minutes! It's so marvelous to get a blog posting from you once again!

Anonymous said...

At first when I read your post ,I felt a little sad, but no, you fought the cancer ,you are on a winning path and Thanksgiving 2023 will be followed by many many more for you to celebrate!