Thursday, August 21, 2008

Another Second Opinion

Captain Obvious got me an appointment to see the oncologist at M.D. Anderson on September 26. Twenty-four days after my 35th birthday. Two days before our (sixth) wedding anniversary.

I've been thinking a lot about treatment options and quality of life lately. Captain Obvious is friendly with a coworker (in her 60s) who has all the symptoms of lung cancer and apparently a pulmonolgist told her it was "most likely cancer" after looking at a CT scan last year. She has responded to this news by doing nothing. Her justification is that she hates doctors. I hate doctors too. I hate hospitals and IVs and treatment rooms and tests and technicians and nurses. I hate being involved with the whole fucking medical system. But I submit myself to it because I ... because I have to. Until the other day she started coughing up blood and came to Capt. Obvious in tears. He convinced her to call a doctor and make an appointment; then the next week found out that the "doctor" she went to is a "traditional doctor" who is convinced her health issues are a problem with the yeast balance in her body (or something). Anyhow, I do not know her, but her choice to ignore this pisses me off.

Why? Why should it piss me off? I am not really sure but it does. On the other hand, I read the story of Mandy (Mandy's Journal) and I am questioning her choice to continue treatment that robbed her of her quality of life when she had so little life left...

Obviously, I am conflicted. I am dealing with Big Issues here and it is terrifying and wrenchingly sad. I am not scared of death but I just like living so much. I don't want my husband to be a widower. I don't want my son to grow up without a Mama. I'd like to have a 40th birthday party. I'd like to have a 50th birthday party, a 60th birthday party. I'd like to celebrate my 10th wedding anniversary. I'd like to be there when my son graduates from high school. Oh golly, as long as I am stating what I want, I want to be a grandmother. I've already abandoned all hope of having a second child...do I have to give up these hopes as well? Some days I know with certainty that I will not make it to 50 and I can handle that. Some days I worry that I won't make it to 40 and that scares the shit out of me.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi
I am from MDC and stopped by to read some of your blog. I am praying that you can celebrate your 50th. I am so sad reading your blog. I want you to see your little one go to school and graduate....and get married...and have children.
I will send prayers and thoughts your way!

Redspiral said...

I've been reading for a while and also from MDC. I'm writing (there's no email link) to ask if you are open to talking to another mother in a very similar situation I know, who is just starting her journey and is really looking for some been-there-done-that support. She is 24 with two little ones and just found out last week she has stage IV colon cancer. I'm just looking for ANY possible resource I can give her as she and her husband are really struggling with this news. I plan to also refer her to your blog.

Would you be willing to contact me so that I could put you in touch with each other or would that be uncomfortable for you? I don't want to do anything but connect two women who are in a very similar situation so that you both might find support.

Let me know.

kristina @ dynamicdoula dot com

Rose said...

redspiral: Just have her send me a PM on MDC. Though of course I will try to help her out as much as I can, colon cancer is not lung cancer.

Anonymous said...

Another reader from mdc - sending you lots of healing vibes. Have you looked into cesium chloride?

Gina said...

Fight until your last breath. Dr.s can guess but they can't know. My mother in law was given five months at the beginning of her stage 3b cervical cancer she lived almost 4 more years. I also think persuing some quality of life alternative therapies like massage therapy or yoga it helped her. we figured it couldn't hurt.