Friday a week ago I had a CT scan (I’ll definately need to post a ministering angel story about this ) and for the first time, some tiny unclassified spots on my liver have started growing in size (3 to be exact). I should have known when the Doctor calls me back instead of the nurse, there was trouble. These spots were seen in the very beginning but the Doc said they were too small to identify or biopsy thus he wasn’t going to worry about them as it wouldn’t change the treatment protocol he recommended either. Let me just say, I’ve had at least 3 prior CT scans prior to this in the last 2 years and there was never any change until now.
So my Doc said he was very concerned as he described them to me (I can’t remember a thing about their description). I just had to ask “so are you saying it’s cancer? or could it be something else?" His indirect respone? "With the type of cancer you’ve had (stage 3 colorectal cancer with 3 positive lypmph nodes), we don’t want to see any changes in your liver". Reading between the lines, I think I may be facing stage 4 liver (or more) metastisis.
When I hung up the phone, I’ll admit, I was a bit emotional when I told my mom and brother what he said. But I returned home and talked to my twin sister who asked me how I was going to handle this should it be bad (knowing I was very, very emotional and pregnant the 1st go around). Next, I talked to my 12 step sponsor for food addiction (another good story I’ll have to tell later). She has been through cancer herself and is such a beautifully positive person. She offered me the encouragement I needed.
After both these conversations, I made a conscious decision to do it differently. My thoughts went something like this “I’ve already done this the anxious, scared, and stressed out way and it was no fun at all! I feel pretty normal again, have a good deal of my energy back, enjoy outings with my 2 precious daughters and husband (we all pick him up for lunch once a week and enjoy a park picnic). I’ve been gardening for therapy and have a transformed yard to boot, I get to serve in my church working with the primary children….and by Golly! I want to keep it this way!!!
Let me just say that this one decision has become one those pivitol moments in my life; a hinge that can swing me in several different directions for better or worse. It has set a tone in my home, for my husband and children in how we are going to deal with this; taking it in stride a day at a time. We are going to LET GO AND GIVE IT TO GOD (I’m screaming as I type this at the top of my lungs...in my head of course---and smiling) because HE is in control; Of course I will seek his inspiration and I will take action to get treatment, but ultimately HE is the great physician and He will decide if I get to stay or come home to him. And either way, it will be ok because he is mighty to save (a sick body or a wounded heart)! Can I just say it is so freeing to just let it go! We are going to live an abundant life and cherish the time we have no matter how short or long. It’s truly amazing how one little medical scan can change your perspective in an instant. A family picnic on a warm June day is a truly abundant life. Watching my 4 y/o dance or my 17 m/o sing is an abundant life. Smiling at strangers (even when they think you are weird) is an abundant life. I heard about this book several years before cancer was on my radar entitled “One Month to Live”. Well, it’s still on my bookshelf collecting dust but MAN does it resonate with me…I now KNOW what he’s talking about because I’m trying to live it day by day.
So here’s my plan. Actually it's not MY plan but God's plan but here's what I'm going to do. I will document my journey beginning today. Maybe not everyday because I've got two beautiful young children to laugh, love, and play with. Nevertheless, I have quite a tale to tell starting almost 2 years ago with me 39, pregnant, with a cancer diagnosis. And so it begins!
Arise & Shine Forth!