Cancer update #8
A few weeks ago Teddy decided to pour an entire sports bottle full of water on top of Nathan's laptop. I have no idea why. My suspicion it that he was attempting to put it in the bottle holder of the bike that hangs close by on the wall, though if this was the case, it was quite spectacular that he manged to miss pouring the water anywhere but the laptop. Nathan suspects he was trying to clean the laptop, which is both utterly ridiculous and quite likely. The laptop did not survive. It died a slow and painful death over the following day or two and left Nathan with only my laptop to work on. I'm going to blame the very long delay of this post on that - which is partly true, but I'll also admit that its been quite nice not to have to think about cancer for the few weeks I've had away from the hospitals. Any thoughts I have had, have been ones that I've struggled to put into coherent words, so really have not been worth your time.
A few weeks back now, we received the pathology results from the surgery. There was indeed still cancerous tissue on my foot (this was not a surprise given what the PET and MRI scans had indicated) but the doctors were able to achieve the clear margins they were hoping for, and there was no cancer in the outlying tissue that they removed. This was, and is, praiseworthy news for which we are very thankful. It means no more surgery in my foot for now, which is also great news. I met with my doctor this morning and he is planning on following this up with an MRI of the foot mid October which should show for certain whether all cancerous tissue was removed.
In addition to scheduling this MRI, there are a few things that I should mention about this morning's appointment. Most importantly, is that the doctor was able to have a look at another lump that I found last week. The lump is very small and in the lymph nodes just right of my groin - the closest lymph nodes to the primary cancer site. If the cancer were to spread, this would be a likely place for it to do so and it is, therefore a cause for concern. Positively, however, it doesn't hold all the characteristics of a suspicious lump - it's free moving and fairly soft, much more similar to a small fatty lump. I have also been pretty sick with a chest infection which is something that often causes your lymph nodes to flare up, and it has (I think!) gone down slightly over the past day or two. Given the uncertainty he has decided to monitor it over the next week or two. If it gets bigger, doesn't get smaller in a week, or doesn't go away all together in two, then it'll have to be biopsied. Given the size that would mean removing it entirely, which should be able to happen quickly and under a local anesthetic. We hope and pray that this will not be necessary and that it will be nothing more than an unfortunate response to illness.
Other things to be praying for would be an appointment with the oncologist on Thursday. This is to discuss a plan for radiotherapy, and to organise some follow up CT scans of my chest. As mentioned a while back, I had a couple of potentially suspicious nodules in my lungs that need to be monitored for growth. It would be great to be able to have these scans soon and for them no show no growth.
Finally, on a more personal note, there is a possibility that the radiotherapy will make it impossible, or at least more difficult, for me to get pregnant. Even if this is not the case, we have to take the diagnosis that we have been given and the poor long term prognosis that comes with this, into consideration. While on the one hand I am able to praise God for the two little ones he has given us, and know that his plans are always good and wise, it is often difficult for emotions to follow quickly. It is hard not to feel robbed of a future that was really never mine to begin with, so I would appreciate prayer to come to peace with whatever decision that we we make - or is made for us.
I'll endevour to write another update on Thursday with the news about radiotherapy. Hopefully it'll be an informative appointment that will leave me with much to write and think about.