June 26th will be a day that i remember for the rest of my life. it is the day i found out that i had cancer and the day that my life was forever changed. how could so many things have happened in just one year? biopsies, surgeries, months and months of chemotherapy, radiation, countless pet scans, ct scans, sleepless nights…. and now after ALL of that, i am cancer free! that chapter is closed. well, almost closed… it has left me with major anxiety on whether or not i will relapse or a second cancer will form…. and it has also left me with crippling debt from medical bills. debt that will never really be gone because even though i am cancer free, there are still scans every year that will continue to pile on to the already insane numbers i owe. oh health insurance…. you are a real gem. but, i have my health back… and i suppose at the end of the day that is what matters.
some things to report! I am still cancer free! my latest scan revealed that there were no masses! they did see a little spot near my liver… but my doctor is confident it’s just a little cyst and will disappear over time… they will of course keep an eye on it. i am not concerned. all of my other levels were good and where they should be so i can’t complain. i had a ct scan done this time around which meant i had to drink 2 different liquids and they were pretty gross. next time i think i’m going to ask for 2 different flavors… i wonder if that will help at all? ugh. i also really hate having the iv put in…. i am a baby!
i also met with a cardiologist this time around. chemo and especially radiation can be dangerous to the organs surrounding the treatment area, so they are taking every preventative measure imaginable to ensure that i remain healthy. i’ll have to get a mammogram in the next few years also…. extra thyroid testing, the works! i was happy to learn that the image of my heart they took at this appointment was almost identical to the echo cardiogram they did before my treatments started a year ago. so all news was good news and i am very grateful for that!
i was frustrated to learn that with my specific case of hodgkins lymphoma, that the insurance will only approve one scan per year. my doctor likes to do them every 3 months for the first 2 years post treatment but unfortunately i won’t be able to do that… again, thank you health insurance!!!! so my next scan will be at the end of november…. fingers crossed all will still be clear! of course between now and then if something doesn’t feel right i can of course go in and get checked.
i have to say that i have been in this weird stage lately… it’s almost like i want to forget that i ever even had cancer… and that the past nightmare year of my life didn’t even happen…. but i am realizing now that that is not realistic or possible. it is now and forever will be a part of my story, a part of who i am… trying to erase it would just be wrong of me. it changed my life forever and i am a stronger person because of it and it is nothing to be ashamed of. not that i feel ashamed, i definitely do not!!! i want to take what i learned from having that illness and grow from it… do something with this second chance that i have been given. be the best wife, mother, sister, daughter, friend that i can be…. continue to take care of my body and be grateful each day when i wake up. life is short! there is no sense in living it miserably. i am only mad that it took me this long to realize that! maybe i will finally take those yoga classes i’ve been wanting to do or train for a marathon… who knows! there is just so much that i want to do and there truly is no time like the present to start doing it!
oh, and to give a little hair growth update…. it has been a little over 8 months (which is still SO hard to believe) since my last chemo treatment! this is what i’m currently working with in the hair department:
i am getting my very first trim next month just to make sure it grows in healthy and evenly… eek! it’s exciting to actually see the progress.
so, what will come of this blog now that cancer is “over”? I plan to still use it to keep track of my life happenings… cancer and non cancer related… and actually be much better at it than i am now!!!
thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for following along on my journey so far…. for all of the love, prayers and well wishes. it truly means so much to me!