Tuesday, August 27, 2013

My Story: Part 2

After I finished treatments, I focused on cleaning up my diet and exercising more. I wanted to do everything in my power to stay in remission. My oncologist was so pleased with my results, that he was encouraging me to move on and start a family. Something inside of me knew that it wasn't the right timing. My body needed to heal, and every other report said to wait 2 years.
I had a scan in early May 2012. After drinking 64 ounces of oral contrast and being injected with iodine (which makes you feel like you're peeing your pants..) it was all clear! I was so confident that my battle was over, that I was ready to sell my wig and all of it's very expensive accessories. I even got the go ahead to get my wisdom teeth cut out. Dental work is typically forbidden during and shortly after chemo because of the risk for infection. So I spent my 27th birthday with major chipmunk cheeks and a hematoma from the lidocaine injections, awkwardly stuffing pad thai into my mouth. I even had HAIR!
I thrust myself back into my old life as much as possible; rejoining social activities and covering a maternity leave at work. I didn't have a single doctor appointment that June.
I was feeling fatigued, but pushed forward not wanting to miss any opportunity that got me out of the house. I also had a few low grade fevers, so when I went to get my port flushed in July, I requested a blood draw for lab work. My oncologist and nurses joked around calling me "Doctor Sarah", but they obliged and my blood work was just fine.
August was another doctor free month. I was still having intermittent low grade fevers, so by the first weekend in September, my husband made a worried phone call to my oncologist. My nurse called me back, asking questions and trying to determine what might be the cause. She asked if I had any swelling, thinking that there might be a clot in my port line. I stood in front of a mirror, phone in one hand, and tilted my head back. As I did, a small lymph node became visible on the left side of my neck. My right hand clutched at my throat, trying to palpate every structure. The lump was hard, just like before, only in a new spot.
The nurse made a call to my oncologist, who was vacationing for the holiday. She called me back to let me know that there was "no way" it could be cancer, my main tumor had been in-between my lungs! So I started antibiotics, only told my mom and husband, and went away for the weekend.
You can read part 1 HERE.



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