Monday, October 6, 2014

And then there were eight...

As most of you are aware, last Thursday was scan day. Which means that Friday, I got the results.

And the verdict is... I have a new tumor. On my left ovary. (Turns out my brain isn't the only organ that thought it would be a bad idea to even think about trying to put a baby in this body. Ever.) And I'm officially inoperable. So... chemo.

Rather than starting chemo right away, Dr. H asked if we could push it out six weeks, for a couple reasons:

1) The chemo he'll put me on is BRUTAL and he doesn't want to make me that sick until he absolutely HAS to.

2) He'd like to use Thursday's scan as a base and run another CT to see how fast it's growing before he starts a drip.

So, I have a scan scheduled for 11/20. If that scan shows tremendous growth, he'll admit me and start chemo asap. If the November scan doesn't show tremendous growth - and if I'm still not experiencing life-altering symptoms - he'll push it another six weeks.

My pain level will always supercede any scheduled scans. If I start waking up at night because of the pain, or if I start coughing and cannot stop, or am nauseated every day of my life, etc., I am to call and he'll do an emergency admit and start the drip.

I didn't get the name of the chemo. (Truth is, I didn't even have an appointment with H on Friday. My appointment was with G, to get the results of the PET. ... But the results of the test mean that I need chemo, and H will be my chemo doctor. So, H, out of the goodness of his heart, made some time to come in and talk to me for a few minutes. ... I love that man. ... I need to make an appointment this week, so I can go back and ask a few follow-up questions.) What I do know is that this chemo is one of the two hardest out there. It will be ugly. He'll admit me for 4-5 days for every round (yeah, I'll live in the hospital - for days - for every round of chemo... sounds groovy, right?), and then let me rest for three weeks between rounds. They'll do two rounds, then do a scan to see if it's shrinking. If it is shrinking/holding, we'll do more chemo. If it's growing, then we'll "do something else". Don't ask me what that means, because I'm not sure. ... I asked, and he was evasive. (Awesome. Possum.)

What I do know:

The PET showed four hot spots: a gland in my neck (remember how I told you that I was so tired that my teeth hurt? ... well, there was enough swelling there that it showed up on the scan), two spots in my left side (these little dudes would be what is now coming up from the tissue left behind in my last surgery) and Leftie. (This is what I have named my new little friend.)

I don't know how big these new friends are. What I do know is the SUV uptake on Leftie is more than twice (almost three times, really) that of the larger friend in my left side, and while that's a little freaky, I'm choosing to believe the S in SUV really does stand for "Shiny" (this is what G told me on Friday, to help me both understand and come to terms with all the shiny/sparkly bits of my body that popped on the PET), because somehow, it feels better to think my left ovary is sparkly... and not maybe dying.

How I feel about this new ovarian revelation:

Ehhhh. (That's right. I feel "ehhhh".) It might be because I'm in shock, having recently seen the sentence, "Ovarian metastisis is suspected." appear on my PET report. It might be the copious amount of Dr. Pepper that is, even now, racing through my veins, numbing all internal sensitivities. It might be that I know, deep down, that, truly, nothing has changed. That my body has been doing what it's been doing for months... and that the PET just gave me the information. On a lot of levels, I knew this was coming. And while I wasn't expecting Leftie to fall, I have been waiting for a shoe to drop. And it did.

So, I will do this.

And in the meanwhile, I'm grateful that I have October.

I may not have all the energy I'd like to have, but I'm glad that Dr. H's plan is giving me my birthday month before there's a real possibility that I'll start to lose my hair and my lunch on a regular basis. Go ahead and call me Pollyanna, but I am deliriously happy that I get this ENTIRE month for myself and all of my silly celebratory ways. (Speaking of which... Anyone want to take me and all my tumors to dinner, while we can still eat anything we want?)


shana said...

Yes!! I'll take you to dinner. Come to Vegas baby and I'll take you anywhere you want. :)

Genevra said...

Thank you for the update. October is a wonderful birthday month to have. May it be full of dinners and celebrations. I love you!

Jenni said...

So, I should wait until Nov. to dye my hair purple, eh? Bummer. I was thinking of shaking things up tomorrow. :-)

I love you. Always.

Evvie Turley said...

Am I allowed to cuss in a comment? Good gravy! I am speechless. I wish I could take it for you..........

Mich said...

As I am here and you are there (...and we are all together. I am the egg man, you are the walrus... gotta love the Beatles...), where was I? Oh yes, we are in separate places. So I'll eat my own dinner while watching The Color Purple and then pound some grape jello shots and shave CURE CANCER NOW! into my hairline and tattoo CNCR GIRL on my knuckles like the hardened Bad A that I am. which point I'll promptly be fired, allowing me to rush down and shadow you 24/7 and make a bestselling documentary, the proceeds of which will be used to write my memoirs and fund liposarcoma research. A cure will be found and we'll all live happily ever after with insanity and delusions of grandeur for all!

Genevra said...

Mich, I just love you and Laurie to infinity and beyond! Laurie for always finding the silver lining to some really awful news. Seriously, Laurie, how you did not spend all weekend in bed crying, I don't know. You constantly impress and humble me with your strength of spirit. And Mich, you can always make us laugh, even when we've been crying. I love both you ladies a ton and I'm so grateful to have you in my life.

Debbie said...

You are in my thoughts and prayers, Laurie. Although we haven't met yet I've come to know a little bit of you through your blog and through Genevra. You are blessed to have wonderful friends to offer support...especially Mich and Genevra. Mich's comments always make me chuckle. Hugs and love to you Laurie. You're a fighter and I'm amazed by your strength.