Saturday, July 28, 2012

Most wars have more than one battle

Well, this past Thursday was wonderful and not so wonderful.

The wonderful part was seeing our niece that we love married in the Bountiful temple.   She married a young man named Brandon and he seemed just perfect for her.  It was great!

The not so good part was our visit with my oncologist later in the afternoon.  Really I have felt great lately, really no cause for concern, and yet somehow there was this lingering concern that I couldn't put my finger on.  For that last two weeks I have been praying for good news from the doctors and yet I had this feeling that was hard to describe.

Anyway, we went to the oncologist and they discovered a new growth on my right side.  It is deep, near the sinus and measures about one inch by one half by one half.  They can't tell what it is from the CT scan or the MRI but it wasn't there three months ago.  The doctor told us that we need a CT guided needle biopsy to determine what the growth is.  It was a sobering visit.  I didn't really cry much until later that evening.  I guess I was kind of in shock.  I kept thinking, "Not Again!"  I felt victimized, like nothing I could do would protect me and I was completely at the mercy of the disease that I couldn't control.  I felt like putting on my shoes and running and running and trying to run away from my problems.  I wondered if I had the strength to go through all this again.

That evening I had my sons give me a blessing.  It was wonderful.  It wasn't until after that when everyone was sitting together in the living room crying that my tear glands just broke open.  I cried for quite a while after that.  Simple things like saying prayers with my daughter, I am just not ready to give this life up yet.

I sent out an email to my siblings and some friends asking for their prayers.  I don't pretend to know how everything works but I know that after that  I was able to sleep and that was a blessing.  Friday I called my doctors at Mayo.  Neither of them have seen the scans yet so they just had to rely on my rendition of the results.  The primary surgeon seemed pretty disappointed.  I think he felt so certain that he had gotten it all.  He did say that he was willing to operate again and that the surgery this time should be less traumatic.  My sarcoma doctor was much more upbeat.  When he heard that it had come back in the same site where it started he felt very confident that it could be treated.  First of all he said that it might be benign.  Part of my tumor was benign the first time.  The biopsy will tell us that.  Secondly he said that sarcomas often come back in the the site where they were removed and that a second surgery is often effective in eradicating the cancer.  He said if would be harder if it were back in my lungs but even then treatments are often effective.  He did say that I may need to go back through chemotherapy or even radiation, time will tell.  A lot hinges on the results of the biopsy.

We are supposed to leave for our family vacation today.  I asked the doctors if I should stay home and they both said "No".  A week wouldn't make any difference and I should go on vacation and not worry about it.

Since Friday I have felt much more calm.  I can be brave again, I have faith and I know God will take care of me.  He has never failed me yet.  I can even do chemo again if I have to.   I would rather not, but I am willing.  I am certainly not ready to give up at this point.

I am sorry to ask for your faith and prayers again so soon but I felt great strength from the faith of others last time and would be grateful for that help again.  Maybe I will be blessed and they will find a benign tumor.  That would be great.  However, come what may, I am going to be okay.

As I drove around on Saturday doing some errands the thought kept coming to me, "Most wars have more than one battle",   I guess this is the next battle for me to fight.  I believe that the  war will yet be won.  I have wonderful allies at my side.  Today I will just worry about this battle.