Monday, October 28, 2013

Anxiety is Useless

Tonight has been quite eventful! My sweet Ava suddenly got very sick and she and I spent a few hours at the urgent care sorting out her 104.3 degree fever and vomiting/shivering episodes.  There really is nothing more frightening than seeing your child so sick.   She's been so healthy that I was caught off guard tonight.  So far she's tested negative for flu, so we'll watch and monitor her closely.  I mention this because I am amazingly calm. Don't get me wrong I'm really, really worried and would like to stay awake all night watching her breathe but I seem to have learned a lesson about useless anxiety.  The old me would be totally freaking out.  I'd be googling things from menigitis to H1N1 to a rare tropical disease she "could have" picked up at the beach this past weekend.  For now, I'll pray for a fast recovery and nurse her back to feeling good.

This brings me to another similar subject....... I am in a little battle with useless anxiety over surgery on December 6th.  At times, I momentarily freak out about the "what ifs" with the next MRI or what they may see once they look inside my abdomen.  I definitely know that worrying does nothing but cause useless anxiety over things that may or may not be true.   So for the most part, I'm doing ok.  I get a little choked up thinking about enduring another surgery, regardless if it's small or huge.  I really just want a break. But I'm so thanful that this is my situation.  I could have it so much worse and I know that whatever is to come I can handle it and I will overcome and continue living a healthy and happy life.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Hi, Remember Me?

I know I have been missing in action.  I've almost posted many times but there has been so much going on and I felt like it wasn't time.  In fact, this is just a quick update regarding some health stuff with me because as you know, I believe in the power of prayer and would love to get those prayers flowing :)  I promise to completely update soon.

I had written before that there was talk about doing an exploratory laparoscopy sometime near 1 year after diagnosis/last surgery.  Well.... somehow it has almost been a year since my life turned completely upside down and in about 6 weeks, I'll be celebrating my one year anniversary of the big operation.  I can't believe tomorrow will be 11 months since I found out I had cancer. It is so crazy to me that 11 months ago my life was SO different. Look out for that 12 month post :)  Anyway, I really hadn't thought much about the next steps until summer was ending.... then I got to thinking.... "I should probably make some plans for my next scan and see if that surgery is going to happen." I reached out to Dr. Loggie (in Omaha) and began making plans to go back out there for an MRI and the surgery the first week of December.  However, they informed me that he would not be doing my surgery, that one of his fellows would.  I am absolutely not cool with a non specialist operating on me. Isn't that the point of me traveling out of state?  So, I called Dr. Bartlett's office at UPMC.  I have felt very comfortable with him since I met him in May. I had to send up my MRI from July and wait for them to review it.  I received a call from Heather, Dr. B's PA earlier this week.  I am quite foggy from the conversation because I just wasn't expecting to hear what I heard.  She said they do feel I should proceed with the surgery and that they noticed and read about the fluid in my pelvis and that it could be concerning.  What???  Dr. Loggie said it was a perfectly normal MRI.  This is why this stupid disease is so STUPID!!! It is extremely hard to read any type of scan in the early stages of the disease.  Obviously if I was full of tumors it would be noticable (and I am SO thankful I am not) but that doesn't mean that there aren't itsy bitsy cancer cells creeping around in my abdomen.  AHHHHH. I literally wanted to curl into a ball and pout.  Which I did end up doing most of the afternoon.  So, we spoke about dates and talked about what I'd want if cancer was seen in the surgery.   IF cancer is seen, they will immediately proceed with the cytoreduction and HIPEC.  This is the BIG surgery where they cut from sternum to pelvis and it is not an easy recovery.  Most of the conversation is a blurr.  I think I checked out when I heard her say there could be a concern with the last scan. I will be having another MRI in November along with many different blood tests and a chest x-ray.  I will be flying up to PA on 12/4/13; pre op appointment is on 12/5 and surgery is scheduled for Friday morning 12/6/13.

So specific pray requests..... 1. Please pray for a clean scan in November. I want to go into this surgery confident that I am cancer free.  2. Please pray that the surgery has no complications and of course that there is no cancer anywhere in my body. 3. Please pray that I can keep a positive attitude and remain optimistic.

I'm actually feeling really good emotionally and physically. I have been working hard to stay healthy in every aspect of my life.  I have been doing a lot of hot yoga.  I really love it.  I have been jogging and lifting weights and I begin playing in a coed soccer league next week. That should be intersting since I haven't played in about 8 years. My goal is to be as fit as I can be going into surgery in December.

To say my life has been hectic would be an understatement but I still feel beyond blessed and I am so happy. I have the best support group in the world. My family is truly amazing.  I have THE best friends.  And I never could show how thankful I am to have been supported so much throughout this journey.

One more thing...... I have met many people that have been affected by this rare cancer. (Mostly through facebook.)  There is one family in particular that is going through more than anyone should ever go through and they are only 27 years old.  Nick and Alyssa and their beautiful baby girl.  Nick was diagnosed before me and he has a more aggressive pathology than I have. He has had a lot of treatment and he has the most amazing attitude and faith in God.  Their family could use extra prayers right now.  Here's a link to their blog.

Thank-you again and again and again.