Sunday, August 3, 2014

June Blog

So what happened in June was I had the second surgery to remove my thyroid. The good part. The bad part went in January. It took a long time to get over in the winter. I felt profoundly wounded. I had had a huge scare at the discovery of the tumor  and then it took quite awhile after the surgery to get the results. So then I know something that I didn't want to know, but the good news is that part of me was in a trash heap somewhere. The nut sized cancer stopped dead.

The second surgery was easier. I had an idea of what to expect but the process of healing is still a job. The first 3 days were okay and then I was on my own for a few days which was not ideal. I should have asked for or demanded more help. After 10 days they took the bloodied bandage off and pulled out the sutures. The surgeon exclaimed "this looks great!" patting himself on the back for my benefit.  Somehow the incision site is less painful than the first time and I am grateful for that. In January I did not touch my neck near where they cut into me for over a month, despite knowing that gently manipulating the scar helps to soften the healing tissue. I felt apart from my body. 3 months after the first surgery I could feel connections being remade deep in my neck. Just around the time of the second surgery I was finally feeling normal. So I was more prepared for the second offense but the healing was still work that had to be done. In all it took about 3 weeks to feel okay again. There were real highs and lows during that time but then it all just dissolves little by little and before you know it you're getting up, getting dressed and going about your business like nothing happened. I was fortunate too that two other friends underwent surgery around the same time as me so I was able to help them and also have some really helpful discussions about healing. The surgeon only presents the landscape of the surgery they don't ever discuss in depth the after effects of the anesthesia on memory, the bowel, general outlook. In addition to the aftermath of the surgery I was also getting used to taking daily 2 or 3 Thyroid pills. At first 3 was too many and I felt horrible and jittery and I wasn't sleeping. The surgeon suggested backing off to 2 and that was a miracle.

14 days after the second surgery I awoke one evening, after a good weekend of playing tennis 2 days in a row and I felt so profoundly sad it was alarming. I climbed into bed with my husband and he rubbed my back as I drifted back into sleep. I felt badly about the damage to my body, the irreversible-ness of it all. The news came back, the pathology report was clear. No cancer in the side of the Thyroid they had removed but it was hard not to think, why couldn't I have kept it and used it rather than taking pills for the rest of my life. I felt again like an insignificant wounded animal up against a force much larger than myself and while I was grateful for the care I received it's hard not to feel like a statistic and a board recommended course of action. Am I out of the woods? I think so but the treatment continues, there will be another major test I will have to undergo in September involving Radioactive Iodine and 2 week diet beforehand. I will comply, what other choice do I have?

So all this is to say why I never blogged in June and maybe why the blog has been sparse all year so far. I am fine. I am here. I will prevail.


Twisted Susan said...

Every day is a struggle, every day is a victory. Congrats on yours!

Cupcake Murphy said...

You have prevailed!

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