That is the question.
First things first. I usually thank everyone at the end of my posts. This time I want to thank you first. Thank you for your prayers. Thank you for asking how I’m doing. Thank you for feeding us. Thank you for listening to me. Thank you to those that are donating to help pay for our medical expenses. Thank you for donating to send us on a vacation. Thank you for asking how you can help. This country, this world, would be a much better place if everyone was treated the way that we’ve been treated over these past six months. You are an amazing group of people. Thank you.
Many have asked if I still have cancer. I’ve also asked that question. My doctors can’t say whether or not I have cancer. I still cannot believe this is my reality.
A few days after I last blogged we met with a doctor who went through my pathology report in more detail, and using English. It turns out the cancer was not only alive in my lymph nodes, but also in the tumor in my breast. Not only was it still alive, but it had grown. Not by much, but it grew. My tumor went from 1.4cm to 1.8cm. It was supposed to die and it stayed alive and continued to grow. It looked dead in the CAT scan but it was still living. I’m having a hard time with this.
It’s really hard to go through chemo only to find out it didn’t work.
The big news this week is that I started radiation. I had my first treatment yesterday. I thought I was going to start on Wednesday, but that was a day of more measurements and x-rays. I don’t really like radiation, but I’ve only had it once.
Later this morning we’re going to meet with my oncologist to hear his suggested next steps and any clinical trials he’s found. Next Wednesday we’re headed to Chicago, to Northwestern, to meet with Dr. Gradishar. Hopefully a week from now we’ll know what our future will look like after radiation. I just want to know if I need to have chemo again or not. That’s been a mental struggle for me. When I was first diagnosed with cancer I was ready to bust through this and be done. This time around I have too much knowledge of what the fight is like and I really struggle to be fired up and ready to bust through.
It is so true that ignorance is bliss.
So, to recap I don’t know if I still have cancer or not. I don’t know if I’ll have chemo again or not. I do know that my doctors have told me that I am too young not to do anything. If I was much older they would have told me that my chemo didn’t work and to live a good life. Well, I’m 35 with two young children. I don’t have the option to not keep fighting, even though it’s the last thing I want to do.
For all the scientists out there that have asked what the pathology results were of my tumor, here’s how it came back: T1 N1, Stage 2A, Grade 3, Triple Negative, Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. My margins were clean and three out of the five lymph nodes they removed were cancerous.
I don’t really understand all of this except that it was not what we wanted to hear.