Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Even Good News Comes with Baggage

So yesterday I had my first appointment with Dr Cheng since I finished my ipi (yervoy) injections.  I was very nervous about this appointment, to be honest I am not even sure if nervous can describe how I felt really.  The night before sleep was hard to come by, getting comfortable was over rated and eventually a children's chewable gravol was more then needed to get more then 30 mins un-interrupted sleep.  The morning came and daytime hours dragged just as long as the night times ones I couldn't sleep through.

We actually go to the appointment early, and the waiting began.  And waiting, and waiting, and waiting....  Then the nurse came and got us and we went into the clinic rooms that seem to make up the bowels of Tom Baker's Medical Daycare unit.  They are crammed in the space between the chemo rooms and the pharmacy that house all the liquid gold that we need to take to get better.

Then the typical process begins.  Weight, blood pressure, oxygen level, heart rate, ask about questions on my sheet that I made upon arriving, etc.  Then the nurse leaves and the waiting continues.  I want to hit waiting with a shovel FYI, but so is the life of a cancer patient wanting to see their oncologist to get the good, bad or ugly of the situation.  After what feels like hours we finally have Dr Cheng come in.

She is a woman that I cant easily read and I know that she has literally just gotten my PET Scan results so she is reading it as she stands there in front of me saying nothing.  She apologises and explains she is trying to figure it all out in human terms so that she can best explain everything.  I figure what is actually happening in her head is much like this, read in scientific English, translate to her Chinese mother tongue, translate to layman terms that we will all understand Chinese then English, then talk.  I feel for the poor woman I wouldn't want her job, EVER!

When she starts talking she is a bit all over the place still trying to get all her thoughts together.  Eventually I hear the words "there are no tumours on your breast, none in the axilla or lymph nodes there, none near the gallbladder, none near the kidney"!!  I wanted to jump out of my skin I was so excited.  I actually still do! 

There are others that are still there that look smaller then my last scan in September before I started my Ipi treatments.  There are ones they are just reporting about, but this is more because ones that we knew about before were ones that they used as markers.  (When this all started and I had my first scan I was told 'there are more then we could ever follow at once')  And then came the kicker!

Before Christmas I started having pain in my right shoulder.  We did an x-ray, there was no sign of anything.  I was told to exercise it and we would revisit it when I had my scan if was needed.  Oh well it was needed!!  It is a freaking 4cm mass in my shoulder trying to eat my bone!!  I wanted so badly for this to just be nerve inflammation and a side effect of the Ipi, but no it is the beast trying to get more bone!!

The worst part of all of this is I am so happy that there are 13 tumours GONE, that I want to be happy and feel amazing and relish in the fact that the drug is working.  I want to be focused on the fact that there is really hope here and a light at the end of this past year of hell.  I want 5mins of not worrying for the first time in what feels like an eternity, but I don't have that today sadly.

Today I have more pain in my right shoulder and arm then I have ever had.  I hate that since my mind now knows that it is cancer there that it is letting me feel more pain, or whatever it is doing.  I just want to take my arm off and hit it many, many times.  Beat the cancer right out of it, and then bury the bastard in the back yard.  I have this lingering in my mind no matter how happy I am to share good news or type messages spreading the news, even venting in this blog I still feel the pain and want to scream.  I want to have pushed for the MRI in Dec.  To have all this dealt with before the pain got this bad that I need narcotic to function.

Monday the beast will be angry.  I will be tired.  The radiology floor will have me as a fixture for a week. Then there will be other things to hit with a shovel and this will be nothing but a memory I hope.  Until then Melanoma can take a shovel to the face and be ready for the gravedigger!!


  1. Although I do not know you face to face! I see what an amazing woman you are!I have enjoyed getting to know you and your beautiful family thru FB. Keep beating this cancer and I will keep praying for you.
    Kimberly M from NC

  2. Thank you Kimberly! All the prayers are more then welcome and I am ever thankful for them. I know that they are part of what has been making this process all that much better on days when I don't think I can do it alone. He is helping me thanks to all the prayers being said all around the world for me and others like me!