Back to reality
For those of you wondering where my updates are we decided to go to Rehoboth Beach for a little vacation before surgery. I tried not to think about the things weighing on my mind and just spend time with the family. I did have to make some phone calls to pre-register with the hospital for surgery and return a call to a doctor but we had a great time. Reality hits before we’ve even crossed state lines. I had to call a second opinion gynecologist to make an appointment to hopefully be seen before the mastectomy surgery. I needed to have the consultation done so that I can schedule my 3rd surgery in this little adventure. Dr. Lilly gave me the referral. He talked to the pathologists at Riverside to choose which gynecologist would be best for my particular problem.
I called and they didn’t have an opening until the end of September. That wouldn’t work because I’m supposed to be starting work by then. Even after I explained my situation and that I’m having surgery on Monday she still couldn’t find anything. So, I called the nurse navigator and then Dr. Lilly’s office back and I was told he really wants me to see this doctor. They made the call themselves and got me an appointment for the next morning. Like magic!
I conducted all of this business using my iphone in the long stretch of Maryland/ West Virginia Appalachia highway using slow extended network service. How do they expect me to get on the internet from my car without proper cell phone towers? I think it’s time to upgrade to the wireless equipped Town & Country.
I begged a friend last minute to babysit since all my people are out of town or weren’t available. I don’t think she minded. I think she enjoyed feeding my kids cookies before lunch. At the new gyno’s office I had to wait while he delivered a baby and then made it back to see me. After talking he took me back for a ultrasound to have a look himself. He cut in line in front of his partner who was ready to do a pregnancy ultrasound on a nice looking couple. Too bad for them. I remember when I thought that there was nothing more important than a baby ultrasound. They probably complained, “Why does she get to go first? She doesn’t even have a baby!” The ultrasound showed that the right ovary was normal but the left has a cluster of cysts and one endometrioma. He said it’s not cancer and he would be shocked if it was cancer but it does need to come out. He would like to do a laparoscopic unilateral oopherectomy since I’m done having babies and this would prevent further problems and also the pathologists would be able to have a really good look at the whole thing to rule out any precancerous cells. I will still have the right side ovary (for now) to provide hormones. This doctor does not think a hysterectomy is warranted right now. He said even if I tested positive for BRCA that it is recommended to wait until a woman is between 35-40 to do a prophylactic oopherectomy. We did discuss the option of doing a prophylactic oopherectomy or hysterectomy in 5-10 years because of my family history.
The date is not completely set yet but we are tentatively scheduled for the surgery on September 2nd. This will be 2 weeks after the mastectomy and while I’m still on medical leave from work. Recovery time for this is 2-3 days. While he’s in there I might ask him to go ahead and tie the right tube. Last thing we need right now is another baby.
Oh, I did want to give a shout out to KidsKonnected.org. This organization helps kids who have a parent with cancer. I got the information from Dr. Lilly’s office and I sent off for a welcome package with some of our information. They sent a package to the kids with two teddy bears and two books about cancer and surgery and all the scary things that they hear us talking about. Amira really doesn’t understand much of this and doesn’t pay too much attention but Xander absorbs it all. He read both books cover to cover. They information on surgery and recover and the FAQ section were especially good for him to read. Xander gave Amira his teddy bear and she is sleeping with both of them now. One of the things Kids Konnected does is pair up children with an older mentor to talk to on the phone or through email. So, a 7 year old might get a 13 year old to talk to. The teenagers have gone through training on how to talk to kids about cancer and they have usually had some kind of experience personally. I haven’t signed Xander up for this part yet because he is incredibly awkward on the phone and brief in email. I might ask him if he would like to email another kid to talk about what is going on.