Thursday, January 31, 2013

Life after Cancer

I posted a status on facebook the other day and I got a lot of different responses..The ones who really got what I was trying to say, are the ones who have been there and are living life after cancer. I'm not saying people who haven't had cancer can't relate, but it really is a whole different way of life.

What sparked my thinking about this was a conversation I'd had with my husband..I didn't mean to throw him under the bus in my post, actually my post wasn't even about me.. He and I had been talking about a person we know that has a lot of medical things going on. Things I try to understand but it's hard because these medical things have become this person's life. What I mean is, this person lives to talk about their medical issues and my husband was saying this person loves the attention for these medical issues.

So that prompted something to come up about my page..he doesn't understand the whole blogging thing and doesn't understand why I share what I do with people I have never even met..I've tried to explain to him it's all about the support and helping each other with questions and so on...And he said, if he were to ever have cancer or anything else he wouldn't want attention for it. And it hit me..he has it all wrong..

Did I love the support and kind thoughts while I was waiting and worrying about tests..of course..But the support I love the most is people being supportive of who I am now..who I have become after having cancer.

When I went through my thyroidectomy and radioactive iodine, it was a blur..I had a 3 yr old and a brand new baby..I barely had time to reflect on what was happening..then over the years, after it was over it became part of the past...The people around you probably think oh thank god it's over, she's cancer free and everything is great...But nobody realizes how much something like that changes you.

I can honestly say I am not the same person I was before, and it's taken me 11 yrs to realize it and now I'm finally accepting it...it's hard.  To have an invisible internal yuckiness that nobody else can see or feel sucks.  I have tried to look at the bright side and think I'm lucky I'm alive, yeah I know...but living life trying to feel comfortable in your own skin is difficult.

My husband doesn't get what a struggle it's been to accept the person I have become since cancer...he just doesn't understand...I used to have long beautiful shiny hair, now it's thin frizzy and I have to keep it short because it doesn't grow...I used to be very thin and have tons of energy..that ship surely has sailed..these are hard things to get over, I struggle with my body everyday.

I never know what my day will be like..will I be tired..will I be anxious...will I be angry..will I be able to suck it up again today..hell ya I always do..but it's not always enjoyable....I guess in the past several years I'd gotten into such a rut I'd forgotten who I really was and who I want to be..

So my response to my husband was, It's not about the attention because I had cancer..the cancer part is over..it's about the encouragement on living life after. The support I've gotten on who I am now, thats what has been so great and important to me...

I've been doing things I didn't even think I'd ever do and I get to share them with all of you guys..my wonderful awesome supporters..

So if I can do it, so can you...share, ask, tell..do what makes you happy and don't be afraid to be the new wonderful and amazing you...

Just because a persons cancer is gone, doesn't mean they feel better...yes support them during the bad times but being there afterwards for all the good times is just as important.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Russian Roulette

When I get stressed I clean...so let's just say my house is spotless right now....during the last week I've gone through so many emotions and thoughts...my brain was a foggy mess and I felt like I couldn't breathe at times...suck suck suck.

On the morning of my ultra sound my worry was gone..I was finally going to find out whats going on in there and we could move on from there...good or bad...I wouldn't be stuck wondering anymore..The ultra sound tech was quiet and she took a long time..and I could see her getting pictures of every little lymph node in there...was this good?? or was this bad??

Of course being a Friday I didn't get a call and had to wait out the weekend...we kept busy snowmobiling with the kids and had some drinks by the fire outside...but it was always still in the back of my mind...eating away at my gut..

So here it is Monday morning and everyone got off to their day as usual..and I'm left wondering what that ultra sound tech saw..when will they call..what will they say??

I decided I didn't want to wait nay longer so I called them..secretly hoping for voice mail so I could prolong the results a bit longer...The receptionist answered and I told her why I was calling...she paused and said hang on..30 sec later she comes back on and says "oh we were just going to call you" Ugh ok great..shit shit shit...just say it lady..."I'm looking at your results"

I could almost hear her smile...and she said "EVERYTHING CAME BACK CLEAR!!!"

Oh Thank God!!!  ..waiting for results after you have had cancer feels like russian roulette...cancer is one sick bastard...I can breathe again until next time...Today I got lucky..




Thursday, January 3, 2013

worrying won't change a thing..

It's been days of not being able to get anything done...my brain and focus are on other things..my health..my future..my life..

If your just joining this page or maybe you haven't read through all the blogs...let me bring you up to speed..

11 yrs ago, while pregnant with my second daughter, they found a lump... I had thyroid cancer...It was somewhat of a bumpy ride at first but you learn to deal...I've dealt with the ups and downs of not having a thyroid for the past 11 yrs and it hasn't been easy..

During an appointment back in Oct 2011 my endocrinologist decided out of the blue she wanted one more ultra sound before she gave me the free and clear...after all I'd made it to the 7 yr mark and then to the 10!!  I'm not sure why she wanted this last test..but I'm glad I agreed...They found what they are calling malignant "looking" lymph nodes in my neck...Not to panic she said..lymph nodes can look strange for a number of reasons and turn out to be nothing...maybe that would be fine for a person who's never heard the words..."You have cancer"

Before I ever had cancer I never in a million years thought I'd EVER hear those words...even the day I got my results I sat in that office feeling on top of the world... and cancer has taken that from me...I will never go to an appointment and not worry...I may have been cancer free for the past 11 yrs...but I will never be free from cancer..it will always be there..in the back of my mind.

Tomorrow I will go for my follow up ultra sound to check and see if those lymph nodes have gone back to normal...and then I will go from there...I know worrying won't change a thing...I tell myself there is nothing I can do...yet my mind won't let me think of anything else...

I know whatever the outcome everything will be ok...