Archive for the ‘{10} November Updates’ Category

I did it!

November 26, 2008

I’m a tad foggy still and I don’t feel like going into detail right now, but surgery went well and I’m happily hanging out at home.  There’s really no pain, just some tightness so that is great!  The biggest item on my agenda today is a semi-bath and fresh clothes.  The doctor said everything went very well and my lymph node biopsy will be back in 4-7 days so we’re still praying for healthy nodes.

The calls and texts and emails and cards and flowers have been amazing -thank you and I love you all!

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Surgery Day

November 24, 2008

I had my pre-op appointments today and now I’m all ready for surgery tomorrow.  Here’s what we’re expecting:

7:30am  Arrive at hospital to do tests and prep

11:00am  Surgery

12:30-2:30  Recuperate

3:30pm  Be home

Me waiting to see my doctor for my pre-op.

preop1

November 21

November 21, 2008

Yesterday I had an ultrasound on my left breast and it is normal!  Yay!!  Whatever the MRI thought it saw turned out to be nothing, so that is good news.  I’ll have a 6 month followup just to be extra sure.

November 11

November 11, 2008

To recap:

Since my genetic results returned earlier than expected, we were considering moving my surgery up, but based on multiple factors, we’ve decided to keep my original surgery date of Tuesday November 25.  It will most likely be an out patient procedure and I’ll be home resting by the evening, and then happily stuffing my face at my in-laws two days later!

The surgery will be a small lumpectomy and a sentinel node biopsy, which means they take a few key lymph nodes to biopsy them.

Radiation will begin about 2 weeks after surgery, it will be daily and the side effects are expected to be minimal; I might even go back to work during this.

Two last unknowns:  a) I’m going to have a second ultra sound in the next week or so on the left breast to make sure it is healthy.  b) We expect that the cancer has NOT spread to my lymph nodes but we won’t know for certain until surgery and biopsy.  IF it has spread, that means chemo and all of my lymph nodes to be removed in that area.

So, please continue to send prayers, good woo-woo, happy thoughts for:  A healthy left breast and healthy lymph nodes!

November 10

November 11, 2008

Super Great News!

My genetic test just came back and the news is good – I do NOT have the breast cancer gene mutation which means my surgery should be minimal as we hoped!

November 9

November 10, 2008

My doctor reviewed my MRI images over the weekend.

The MRI confirmed that the mass is about 1cm which is what we expected.

Nothing looked alarming as far as my lymph nodes but they will still be examined/biopsied in surgery.

There was something slight but not alarming on my other breast, so he is ordering an ultra sound just to be sure. MRI’s are good because they are thorough and they are bad because even normal things show up and many times it means extra tests to discern that it is normal.

So in a nutshell, the results are what we were expecting; nothing more and nothing less which is good.

Now, we still wait for the genetics results and I really hope we get them by the end of the week!

November 6

November 7, 2008

We boogied down to South San Francisco today for my MRI appointment.  It started off a bit rough, but after the hassle subsided it pretty much went as we expected.  Without getting into too much detail since there are men who read this, “Aunt Flo” had not “arrived” yet as I had expected and the doctor was insistent that I take a pregnancy test.  So, I was shuffled around the hospital to the lab, out in the public mind you, while wearing my hospital gown, wristband and socks!  There were several emotions during this fiasco; (1) I was certain that I was not pregnant and I was generally annoyed with my body for not cooperating, (2) I was already horrified to walk around the hospital room in my socks but then it hit mach level 4 when I had to go into the public bathroom with no shoes on (I considered burning my socks tonight), (3) I completely looked like an escaped mental patient because don’t forget that everyone is in plain street clothes doing routine appointments.

So, once it was official that the stork had not brought me a present, I finally got my dreaded I.V., was rolled into the MRI tube for 30 minutes and then we were happily sent free.

Now we wait for the results; fingers crossed for tomorrow, but Monday is more likely.

November 3 – Part Two

November 3, 2008

I’ve already reported as much as I know today, and since we’re still waiting for tests to occur and for test results to return, I felt the need to chat a little, if for no other reason than to fill some time on this rainy day.

STATISTICS
During my required genetics counseling appointment last week, a massive amount of statistics and odds were said and I really had to control myself from cracking inappropriate comments during her spiel.  70%, 40%, 10%, 80%… all of these stats were based on positive results, negative results, family history and so on.  It was dizzying and once again Mike wrote diligent notes.
At one point I wanted to ask;  “what are the odds that we die in a massive earthquake right now, especially since we are in what looks to be a pre-war building built in the heart of San Francisco”; or “what are the odds that I choke on a hotdog at next year’s July 4th BBQ”;  or “what are the odds that…”  But I kept my thoughts to myself because she was such a caring professional and because I knew anytime I added my usual banter it would only extend the meeting, and at this point I was desperate to get through it so I could be approved for the genetics test.

SAFEWAY
Normally I’m really quite chipper and composed but every now and then moods and emotions kind of spring up where they are least expected.  My case in point was made last Friday as we made our way to a Halloween party in Healdsburg.
Our first stop was Starbucks because I had the beginnings of a bad case of moodiness brewing and I thought a dose of caffeine might help me snap out of my funk.  As I quickly guzzled my Soy Chai Latte (hoping for immediate results) we made a second stop at Safeway to grab a few snacks so we didn’t show up empty handed.  As I walked the aisles, my mood began to compound with each pink ribbon I spied.  First it was my favorite pita chips that had a big pink logo touting something about ‘proceeds to breast cancer’, than a happy employee announced over the intercom that another $5 dollar donation had just been given for breast cancer research, and then I used all restraint when the clerk said with a big smile, “Would you like to make a donation to breast cancer?”  I paused and thought of my two optional responses.  My first option was to wipe his smile off with sharp words, “Actually I’m living the real thing right now and I think I’ve given enough to breast cancer this month!!!!”  But he was innocent and sincere and bless him for helping to collect funds, so instead I opted for the second response; I looked him in the eyes and said with a half smile, “No thank you.”

It all came crashing in later in the evening as I was downing a big glass of red wine (hoping it would help my mood because clearly the latte didn’t) and two of my dear friends asked how things are going?  I got out about two words before I began sobbing.  There we stood all 3 of us teary-eyed and hugging while trick-r-treaters we’re being handed fistfuls of candy just a few feet away from us.  My tears surprised us all, but we had a good hug and some heartfelt laughs and then we fixed ourselves another drink.  Sometimes, tears and booze are the best cure.

VAMPIRES
Last week while I sat in a Kaiser Lab watching my blood flowing into yet another tube, the technician made small talk about her upcoming Halloween plans. She and her fellow lab mates were all going to dress up as vampires.  Pretty clever!
As I sat in yet another Lab today watching yet another tube fill, I actually realized how poignant her costume idea was; they just can’t get enough blood!

November 3

November 3, 2008

My MRI has been moved up to this Thursday afternoon despite it not being the most optimal biological timing.  My doctor feels the need to move things on a bit quicker and he’s confident that the MRI will show him just what he needs to see, or rather not see. This test is more of a routine procedure to completely rule out cancer being anywhere else and we all feel confident that it will have good results (I almost said positive and you know how that has two meanings!).  The appointment will be in South San Francisco and Mike will be faithfully at my side. We’ll let you know the results just as soon as we know.

And it’s official, unless it gets moved up… my surgery date is booked for Tuesday, November 25 in Terra Linda.  As I stated before, what type of surgery is still tbd.