Friday, June 6, 2014


This morning, I hopped on over to MD Anderson, bright and early, to get the results of yesterday's scan.

I went through the typical two nurses, one to weigh me and slap me with the blood pressure cuff, and the other to ask me all kinds of awkward questions about my bowel functions, (good news: I have zero qualms about talking 'poop'), and then my dreamy doctor came in.

AKA: The Future Mr. Laurie Evans.
AKA: The #1 Oncologist of All Time
AKA: Dr. H

So, Dr. H came in, sat down on his rolly chair and asked how I was feeling. "Fine", I told him. "Really?", he asked. "Yeah", I answered,  "But you want to know what would make me even better? ... Tell me there's something on that stupid CT that is going to merit further testing, so my insurance company will have to suck it up and pay out. Big."

"Seriously?", he asked.

"Seriously!", I answered.

Leaning back in his chair, Dr. H smiled wide and said, "In that case... Good news."

At which point, I threw my head back and laughed. Maniacally.

Because isn't that what a girl's supposed to do when she learns she's unwittingly grown tumor #5?

Anyhoo... it appears that I have a new little friend. (Again.) He's roughly the size of a golf ball and is located in my lower left quadrant. (Not quite in the same place as my first three tumors, but close.) I've named him Omar the Tu-mar. (Because I am hilarious. ... Also, maybe a little bit insane.)

Meet Omar. 

He's the 41.59 mm growth along the far right side in this pic.

Dr. G wants to do surgery on June 19th. (I argued for mid-July so I could go home for the 4th and follow the anvil around town, but no dice. Something about how it appears that Omar is wrapped up in my small intestine, and with the rate two of my four prior tumors have grown.... well, it could get messy. Messier than it already is, if you could imagine that. So, surgery is sooner, rather than later.)

While G's in there, retrieving Omar, he's going to also deal with the Henries. (Plural, because that fool went ahead and multiplied. In my body. Without my consent.) What was once ONE hernia near my belly button is now three fairly large hernias along my surgical line, and a few more weak spots in my belly. Per Dr. G, I now have what is called "Swiss Cheese". Awesome. Thanks, for that, Hen.

And speaking of *Henri

All that floating white matter? Bowels. That's right. BOWELS. That are (barely) being held in by my skin. - They should be behind a muscle wall (if I had such a thing), where all my other organs live.

Dr. G's going to attempt a mesh patch separately with the three big hernias. I'm not entirely sure how that's going to work, but the man has already saved my life once, so I'm gonna let him do it again, and if he wants to throw some mesh in there while he's at it... Go crazy, dude!

A lot of people are asking how I'm feeling (and how in the world  I'm smiling). I'm feeling alright. Tired, as per the usual. But also grateful that now I have an answer as to why I've been so tired the last few months. (Growing cancer wears a girl out. For real!)

I'll be out of work for 4-6 weeks, with no income whatsoever. (Do I have short-term disability insurance? Yes. Will it cover the cancer? No, because I've been on a treatment plan - they call semi-annual scans a treatment plan - so the cancer is excluded as a pre-existing condition.) 

I'm so grateful that I have no debt. Still, I pay so much for my routine medical stuff that I have no savings. I'm not sure how I'm going to pay my rent, let alone my medical costs. (Ha!) That being said, the Cancer Girl Donation Button is still at the top right corner of the blog. (If you're on a phone and can't see the PayPal button, scroll down and select "view web version". It'll pop right up.) If you have $2, $20, $200, or $2,000 you can spare, I promise to tear up in gratitude upon receipt of the email notification, and then send you a hand-written Thank You card the likes of which you've never seen. 

Here we go again. I'm tired of this surgical routine, but I'm also resigned to it. (I mean, when the alternative of surgery is growing a watermelon-sized tumor that will eventually choke the life out of you, you wrap your head around major surgery. Real quick.) I am grateful that I got almost two whole years between surgeries this time. 

As always, I am grateful for all of the amazing people in my life. I don't know what I ever did to deserve, like, seven of you... but it turns out I have hundreds of people out there who have been reading this silly blog and supporting me through my Cancer Girl Struggles since 2010. Thank you. To each and every person reading this, thank you.

While I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to do this, I know that I will be able to do this. And I know that, in large part, I'll be able to do this because so many of YOU are out there are praying and pulling for me. From the bottom of my overflowing heart, and with so much love that I can hardly breathe, I thank you.

*Henri is the French spelling of Henry. As the Swiss speak French, I thought it was only appropriate to change the spelling of that fool hernia's name, since he's gone all "Swiss Cheese" on me.


Melissa said...

Not fair! Stinking cancer. Thank goodness for such a positive Laurie and a great doctor!

Lana Owens said...

Laurie, you are absolutely amazing!!!!! I have never known a person to be sooo positive and happy when life throws out ever spaghetti noodle in the bowl. You defiantly know how to "enjoy the journey" no matter where you are at on the path. Thanks sooo much for your example. You have truly touched my life. Big hug to you Laurie!!!