July 20, 2010


Good day/bad day?: Ran out of steam, had both good & bad components.

Olive was up the last 2 nights in a row, which is unusual for her--coughing herself awake. I took her in today since it kept getting worse, and she has an upper respiratory, eye, and ear infection. Poor kid! It doesn't tend to slow her down much, but she did cap off a lovely bedtime bottle by projectile vomiting all over me. Ah, motherhood! Everyday is like a Hallmark card...

Not a whole lot of developments today on the cancer front--most of the next week will just be getting the rest of my life ready for what's to come. I did have one unexpected thing in a call from my OB/gyn. I left a message with his office last week just with an FYI and talked to his nurse, but he decided to call me and talk through some of the other issues involved with the fertility issues, ovarian CA, etc. I was never sure how I'd warm up to him (kinda nerdy and awkward, not oozing charisma) and was expecting to switch to a nurse midwife when I had Olive, but I had some issues and he just called to check in on me a few days after some pain because he wanted to be sure I was okay. Same kind of call today, very sympathetic and wanting to be helpful. Gave me a good recommendation for a gynecological oncologist. He also said that when he heard, he was trying and trying to think back to my last appts and breast exams with him and if there were any lumps (there weren't), worried that he missed something. He didn't. It's nice to have doctors invested in your well-being!

I don't think I've talked about it much, but the next concern down the road after treating this CA is the increased risk of ovarian CA with the BRCA1 mutation. The typical recommendation is for removing the ovaries, preferably by age 40 because there is is no good screening for it, and even people who are being closely watched have their cancers found at advanced stages. If you'd get to pick the kind of CA you'd get, this would be one of my last choices! So, there's a chance the chemo will put me into menopause anyway--sometimes temporary, sometimes not--but then I'd be thinking about when to choose to go into it. Weird, huh?

I guess a lot of the decisions I'm making are different than what other women in the same boat would do, but I don't know how well it would sit with me having big risk numbers for both more breast and ovarian CA and just waiting for something to appear. I think it would almost feel inevitable. Rather than go through the wondering, the rounds of scan and biopsies and the potential for more treatment, I need to do what I can to get this done and get back to focusing on my family and the other things I love.

Hope that makes sense. It does to me, and I guess that's what counts.


Kathy said...

Your decisions are YOURS and I think you've put a lot of thought into them and have carefully weighed them internally and with Ben and others. I admire the way you've taken very little time thinking "poor me" and have plunged into learning everything you can when many others would be burying their heads in the sand or under the covers. I think your decisions are courageous and offer you, Ben and Olive the best shot at your best life, not to mention us, your extended family who look forward to torturing you with Waterworld once again next Christmas--Count me on your side always and all the way. Love you--Kathy

Jim said...

Projectile vomiting...SO do not miss those days! Or doing laps with Sam in the living room to get him to go to sleep. Or driving to the Wisconsin river and back to get Greta to fall asleep. Good thing they turned out to be such nice kids/young adults in the end!