Yesterday, my daughter and brother went with me to my Oncologist appt to go over the results of my recent cat scan and I was hit with two big surprises.
My first huge surprise came when my Dr. revealed the extent of the cancer tumors I’d had throughout my body. The Dr. told me that I’d had tumors on my tonsils, liver, kidney, spleen, chest, under my arms, and in my groin area. This is when I discovered that no one really expected me to live through the treatment. I never knew the extent of the cancer – my doctors had only discussed the details with my brother and daughter who kept the distressing truth to themselves - that things did not look good for me at all. All I knew up until then was that I had Stage Four cancer in my spinal and groin area.
The next huge surprise came when my Dr. told me that the tumors were all gone! All areas came back clean. Just looking at the expression on my Oncologist’s face as she told me showed me how shocked and delighted she was with the results herself. When she was telling me the tumors were gone she did it in a very dramatic way that actually surprised me!
I thanked her for getting me through the ordeal and back to health but she insisted that she did nothing personally to get those results. She insisted that she did not “cure” me. It was her contention that whatever I was doing at home during my treatment was the real cause of my healing. I thought about this later because I could tell the Oncologist was being sincere as opposed to just being modest about the whole thing. I knew I couldn’t think of anything in particular that I’ve done to get such a result. So as I thought about it, I began to remember all of the prayers, love and support I’ve been receiving from hundreds of people from around the world. I thought about the times when I was so ill and weak I couldn’t even talk. It was during these times that God would come to me and sit with me and just talk and hang around so that I was not alone ever.
I suddenly felt exhausted. I have been fighting for my life for months and now I knew I’d be okay. As the weight of the battle began to melt I wept for the first time. I wept not in sadness or fear. I wept in gratitude for surviving and my life has new meaning.
There is one more test to verify the cancer that was in my spine is in full remission, however it is too early to get that done. I have to wait at least six weeks after the final chemo treatment before I can get that test, which is scheduled for mid Nov.
The other not so good news is I’ve developed another fracture in my spine due to the amount of bone deterioration from the chemo process. I have a neck and back brace that my Dr. wants me to wear for the next two months anyway just to prevent further damage. Due to a side effect from the chemo I’ve had no appetite at all so have a problem with weight right now. This is affecting my recovery as I’ve been undernourished.
To get the daily nutrition I need, I now drink six bottles of “Ensure” a day, which my sweet daughter, Cleo insisted on buying for me. I think in the next week or two I’ll be able to put more food in my mouth and have an appetite.
Throughout the chemo process I’ve constantly thought about procuring the documentation and information I need to complete my book. I was not able to write and do chemo at the same time but I have been preparing as best I could. I sent an email earlier about people who are willing to support my effort to complete my book. This in itself is a blessing and for sure will add to the quality of the project.
I still have issues with my spine in that I have a new fracture since this whole thing started and my Dr. describes my spine as being more cheese-like than bone. While I work on making sure I have proper nourishment and give my bones a chance to recover, I am unable to lift more than 5 lbs at a time.
My younger brother has been there for me since I became ill. When I was bedridden, he cooked and cleaned and helped me be clean the entire time. He has taken me to every appointment I needed to go to and generally has been my private angel. He knows what I need and he knows how to take care of me while I recover. And now, I’m finally through this and ready to go on again.
I’ve spent a lot of time lying on my back in pain, and then I was able to get up for short periods of time. I’d use the time when I could get up to play music on Facebook. I also used Facebook to let people know how I was doing from time to time. I just want you guys to know I am forever grateful for all of the love, hope and prayers sent to me by people out there. I really do think that together as one love we made a difference for an individual. This time that individual turned out to be me.
I say this to make the point that Facebook was as complicated as I was able to handle at the time. I really have been patient and waited for the day that I could post something on EXScn.net. So here it is, posted here first. Again I thank you all for your love, prayers and words of encouragement throughout my tribulation. You know I love you all very much.