Through your darkest hours, as a cancer patient, you never think you will hear the words that you are healthy. You dream about it. You wish it every day. You walk in walks. You hit the “like” button on every stance to fight cancer for those fighting and those who bravely lost the fight.
I’ve been there all too many times and in the past week have had the blood work and this morning, the all-telling ultrasound. As they goop you up from place to place and press on your throat, you worry. It seems to take forever. Mine certainly did. The blood work last week which was not that impressive was worrisome and I have felt awful with a cold, so I really wasn’t expecting the best this morning.
There I laid, going through the steps I’ve done at least five times before. The technician, very quiet continued to work through her paces. Film after film, click after click. I start some small talk which was quickly stopped because it moves the part of my body that she needs to take pictures of. Suddenly she stops and turns on the light. Certain that she was getting the doctor, I panicked. She quickly touched my arm and told me she ran out of film and needed to find some more.
The beads of sweat were obvious and noticeable and once the new roll was loaded, we continued for about four more minutes, checking both lobes, the nodules on them and the glands nearby. Every second seemed like hours. She smiled down and told me we were finished and apologized for the long scan. She stated that the nodules were all so small that she had a very hard time measuring them.
If you are in my world, that was enough for me to know that I could breathe today. The nodules were the smallest they have been in five years and there was no way they were toxic. They were so small and my thyroid so non-existent and that was the reason I have felt so awful. I have no hormone in my system and my current medication was not at a level to support it synthetically.
So not only was I not having a problem, I was REALLY not having a problem and I was hugged and given better medication to help regulate my new body. Of all days to forget my Blackberry, I forgot it. I rode home from the Doctor in silence, not quite knowing how to feel. There was no place in my body that had any cancer, pre-cancer or thoughts of cancer. I drove a little too fast and a little too crazy, but I did get home and told the family.
I called my parents and sat down to blog it for everyone. Feelings from someone who is chronically sick change on an ill to ill basis and for me, I’m looking forward to having a summer with no worries, playing kickball and swimming. I have no checkups now for four months, so that puts me into a good place.
It’s hard for me to celebrate completely because I know too many people, family and friends who are receiving the news I didn’t receive today. My sense of joy is their sense of dread. My brightest moment is their darkest. It is also a fleeting moment, for there have been two other times that I have felt this moment only for the onslaught of the monster to return.
For the next four months, I will be happy and will not think about my body. I will cry tears of course, but tears for different reasons. I will garden and fish. I will work my tail off to lose ten more pounds. I will soak up the love of my son and daughters. I will hold the hands of those who lose someone to cancer. I will remind myself every single day how I felt right this very moment.
Something old has left town and I am hoping it stays away for good.
Today, I am cancer free.