The results are in!

September 4, 2009 · 5 comments

(That title makes it sound like a game show!)

** Goofy stuff here, scroll down if you prefer the serious, detailed version**

{Hearing Muppet Game Show Host Guy Smiley in my head} “Our first contestant is a 35 year old mother of 2 who admits to years and years of lying in the sun using suntan oil! [gasp], lying out in those strongest sun hours of 10-2! [oooh] and using tanning beds! [eeek] to get that golden glow she loves so much!! ”

“After noticing a long-time mole had changed shape and color, our contestant went to a doctor and a few weeks later, here we are!!” [applause]

“Bob, tell our contestant what she’s won!”

{Bob the announcer guy} “You’ve got it Guy! Our contestant has won three…count em,THREE prizes Guy!”
“First, she won a ‘get-that-mole-out-and-get-it-tested’ trip to a lovely office in Ann Arbor, Michigan!!” [clapping]
“Then, she won an all expenses paid trip to the surgical facility at University of Michigan, where she spent all day waiting until she finally woke up and was able to go home with 2 painful and tender incisions!! [hooting and hollering]
“Third, Guy, our lovely contestant won another surgery!! [applause and whoo-ing]. Yes, Guy, our contestant gets to undergo yet another procedure in which they will remove lymph nodes, rendering her basically a couch-blob for 1-2 weeks, and resulting in what we hope, is a cancer free life!!” [standing ovation]

{Guy} “Wow, Bob, that is FANTASTIC!! Tune in next time when we play How long can Dawn veg on the couch before she goes insane?!”

[applause and curtain]


Ok, so I have a strange sense of humor!  For those of you who want it straight, here’s the update on me:

We had an appointment with my Surgical Oncologist, Dr. C, today to get the full results and next steps for my Melanoma treatment.

The good news is that of the two lymph nodes they removed, the one was perfectly clean. (And that the wide area excision around the original mole is clean, too.) The bad news is that the other one had a small amount of cancer cells in it.

So that means another surgery.  Dr. C’s magic fingers will remove 6-10 more of the lymph nodes in that area, in hopes that if there are any sneaky little cancer cells hanging around, they will get them out.  (For those of you anti-doctor or medicine, there actually is an option to skip the next surgery and just have the area scanned every few months to see if any of the nodes change. Of course, by the time they see a suspicious node in a scan, it could already have spread, so I’m more comfortable taking the risk of surgery than the risk that a suspicious node shows up next week and we give it 4 months to go ahead and spread).

The incision is expected to be about 8-10 inches long, starting from right above the crease of my leg and down (yes, it’s ok to think it, or even say it out loud: holy shit!).  I’ll have a drainage tube (GAG) and for the first week, not allowed to be up except to use the bathroom.  And they mean laying on my back, leg elevated not getting up. You know, at all.  And the second week, getting up slightly more than that.

Mike is going to check into FML and be home to take care of me; I’ll be able to work from home, so that will be good.  The boys will be in school.

After the surgery and recovery, we’ll meet with the Medical Oncologist to talk drug treatment.  The standard of care is interferon (Dr. House, I presume?!) for a period of time.  It’s something that actually already exists in the body, so by adding more, it attacks any rogue cancer cells in an aggressive way. I’m, at this point though, not really thinking that far ahead.  We don’t have a date for the surgery yet (stupid holiday weekend), but I expect a call Tuesday or Wednesday with that date.  Once I get that, have the surgery and go through recovery we’ll worry about the next step.  Cross that bridge when we come to it, so to speak.

Since I know you’re all wondering, I’m ok.  Really.  I had a really good cry (read: sobbing in the shower) when I first found out the basics of the results, and while I am concerned and worried, I am confident that the doctors at one of the best Melanoma Cancer Centers in the states (U of M) are good at what they do and are working to keep me around for a good long time.  Mike has been an absolute rock through this whole thing – I seriously don’t know what I would do without him.

Of course, I still have moments of fear and panic – they come and go throughout the days – but I would be worried if I didn’t.  And I have anger.  Stupid Cancer.  It’s making me miss my cousin’s baby shower – I was so excited for the weekend away celebrating her little soon to be born baby!

In all of this, I may have found my tattoo idea though.  I have been waiting for the right thing, the thing that has meaning to me (besides the boys, obvs) and I’m pretty sure this idiotic disease has provided it for me.

At least it’s good for something, right?

Anyway, I’m good.  My family and friends have been fabulous and I am thankful every moment for every single prayer, good thought, mojo, whatever that I’ve been sent.  I’m sure to post more about this as the days go on.  Thanks for being here. 🙂

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

slouchy September 4, 2009 at 10:12 pm

thinking of you, nonstop. xox
.-= slouchy´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..Tails =-.


flutter September 4, 2009 at 10:16 pm

how long will you be down?
.-= flutter´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..I wonder =-.


Kyla September 5, 2009 at 12:03 am

Yeah, I totally thought, “Holy shit!” when I read about the incision. YIKES.

I’m sorry you have to have another surgery, but I hope this takes care of the cancer, with the help of the medicine, and this will be a thing of the past for you soon.
.-= Kyla´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..Scare. =-.


annettek September 5, 2009 at 9:41 am

I wish we were real life neighbors so I could bring you a casserole or pie. I’m not as good with words as I am with food – but know that I’m thinking good thoughts for you.
.-= annettek´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..first first =-.


Paige September 8, 2009 at 8:44 pm

You’re in my thoughts. Please be well and let me know if I can send you any reading material or fun stuff to keep you occupied while you’re laid up (if, in fact, you’re laid up at all). XO, PB
.-= Paige´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..On My Mind: The Francophile Edition =-.


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