Real talk: I’ve had a draft of this post written for awhile, but each time I sat down to type, I suffered a Code Red Meltdown, shed a few hundred tears, and threw my laptop across the room.
I recently posted about the power of fear, and not letting the “F” word take control.
I confidently believed everything I said. Stay positive. Don’t let the fear win. You got this, girl! <Snap your fingers in a sassy “Z” formation>…blah blah blah.
Then I got one of “those” phone calls.
The type that activated my upchuck reflex. That promptly shattered all the empowering BS I just spewed from the digital mountaintops.
“We got the results…and your CA-125 doubled again.”
(For reference, a CA-125 test, also called a tumor marker, measures the amount of cancer antigen 125 in your blood. A CA-125 test can monitor certain cancers during or after treatment, and the lower the number, the better. I get tested every 3 months.)
Fighting the urge to simultaneously vomit, sob, and inhale a large pizza, I asked my handsome oncologist if I had a recurrence. Dr. Li said probably not, it was too early for a recurrence, but something seemed amiss. Certain things like inflammation can cause a spike in your CA-125, and I adopted a new weight training routine a couple months ago. Could that be it? Maybe, maybe not.
Suddenly all my upbeat, empowering advice came crashing down and pistol-whipped my psyche. A proverbial “Hold my beer” from the universe, if you will.
I booked a CT Scan. I figured the scan would show that my belly looked spotless, tumor-free, and ultimately give me peace of mind. I chugged the bitter mocha-flavored oral contrast and hopped into the CT tube, half-excited, half-terrified.
The next 24 hours ping-ponged between I’m totally fine and OMFG I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS HAPPENING AGAIN.
Finally my handsome rockstar ninja oncologist called…and it was another one of “those” calls. The CT scan indicated that a little nodule had snuggled up next to my liver – the same spot where they removed tumors last year.
Now, before we all start panicking and planning my unicorn-themed funeral, let’s focus on the fact that this nodule COULD just be scar tissue. But is there a small possibility of something scary? Yes. So the next step is to repeat the CA-125 in 2 weeks (just a handful of days before I get cleared for my double mastectomy – beautiful timing, right?).
So this became a waiting game. I hate waiting. The uncertainty sucks. I’m desperately trying to stick with my “Keep On Smilin” demeanor but I’ve realized it’s ok to fall apart and feel scared. (So let’s all give a hypothetical middle finger to my “Rah rah rah, positivity rules” blog post.) And sharing this info is cathartic. After all, as I learned from Sex & The City – when you have information you don’t want, the best way to get rid of it is to pass it on.
Consider this passed on. Thanks, Miss Bradshaw!