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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

What to Say?

What to say. My last entry was in October and seems like an eternity ago.
So much has happened:

Nathalie moved home and has a job as a baker in a bakery.
Hannah moved out.
Rachel got a job as a cashier in the bakery.
My dad had 2 strokes and one TIA between December 7, 2015 and January 16, 2016.
And I am scheduled for surgery for Friday.

I use writing to help me sort and sift my thoughts. It helps me process information and put it in perspective. And so that last item on the list: One of those life changing moments that starts with a seemingly routine deal is what I am writing about. I am sure I'll write about the others soon.

I have been battling anemia for the last three years (probably longer, but only diagnosed three years ago). Despite mega-doses of iron and dietary changes, my Hgb levels could not come up to satisfactory levels. It was decided that I needed to see a gynecologist and resolve the root cause of the anemia; drugs and diet alone just weren't going to fix it.

One month ago, upon a physical examination, the doctor decided that I needed to have an ultrasound done on my uterus to see why everything was bigger than normal. The ultra sound revealed a fibroid tumor of approximately nine centimeters (about the size of a newborn baby's head) and a uterus that was four times normal size. (A tip for doctors: avoid using the word "impressive" when discussing anomalies!) So we decided I would have surgery to remove the tumor and my uterus within the week. A small biopsy was taken just be sure even though the doctor was confident there was nothing else going on.

Two days before the scheduled surgery, I received a phone call that the biopsy showed suspicious adenocarcinoma. (That's a heart stopping word right there) He was canceling my surgery and transferring my case to a larger hospital with a gynecological oncologist. A week later, the new doctor confirmed the diagnosis, but said he believed that there was just a 30% chance that it was full blown cancer. He wanted to get me in for surgery as soon as possible, and the surgery was going to be more extensive than previously planned.

Fast forward to today. Surgery is scheduled for Friday. (Apparently the medical definition for ASAP is not the same as mine!) I am supposed to plan on 2-3 days in the hospital and then two weeks of rest, with another two weeks of "light duty".

It's been a long month of learning how to wait. To quote Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride, "I hate waiting." I dislike unknowns. I am a planner. I like to know what is coming and have a plan for dealing with it. Having two or three plans waiting in the wings is even better. Having sub plans for each plan is optimum. With this event, I have been learning how to step in faith. As each step is revealed, I take it, and wait for the next one to be disclosed.

I am thankful that much of the decision making has been taken out of my hands. As much as I am a planner, I am not a decider. Pro and con lists plague me and I am always second guessing my choices. Thankfully every time it has looked like I needed to choose a preference, something would happen where all the other options were taken away.

And so, I am praying for the best outcome (no cancer, just some funky cells that grew a lot), but in my head I am prepared for the not so good. My take on it is that I would rather wake up Friday afternoon and be surprised that there is nothing to deal with, rather than be surprised that there is something to deal with. And either way, I'll take the next step in faith.



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