Monday, November 13, 2006

Catching up

I can't believe it's been over a month since I last posted. My job has been crazy-busy all month so even when I have time at home, I don't have energy. On the job front, I start my new job officially on January 1. However, there are lots of projects going on that I need to be part of, so I am attending a lot of meetings. Unfortunately, my current boss hasn't decided yet who is getting my duties of my current job, so I have nobody to offload any tasks to. This has caused me to get very behind on everything. But I just can't put in a lot of extra hours; there is too much going on at home. So I'll do what I can and pray that I'm not missing anything big. Bleh.

We had Carly's birthday party on the 15th and a good time was had by all, especially the birthday girl. We've seen big changes in our baby girl over the past couple of weeks. She's been taking a few tentative steps, and over the weekend started to actually cover some distance before falling. She says hi and bye a lot, and tries to wrestle the phone from me to say hi to whoever is on the other end. Jim pointed out that the seemingly random sound she makes at meals is actually "thank you" or in her verbiage, "enkoo". I asked her on Friday if she had a good day at school and she nodded. She will also nod or shake her head when asked if she wants more milk, etc. She was also really angry at supper that night; turns out she wanted to serve her macaroni and cheese to herSELF and not have Mommy give it to her. (She had been super crabby so I was holding her on my lap and feeding her.)

Becky's birthday is coming at the end of the month and she is beyond excited. This Saturday she is having a party for her daycare friends at Chuck E Cheese. Oh joy. Actually it should be pretty fun. Then, we're having her family party at Thanksgiving dinner, which will be at our house for the first time in several years. She was excited about combining the two parties so I figured it would be fine, even though I promised myself in the past that I'd never let her birthday be overshadowed by the holiday. Next week she will start transitioning from her current room at day care, Young Preschool, to the Preschool room across the hall. Her current teacher mentioned to me today that she doesn't think Becky wants to move rooms yet. I asked Becky in the car if she wants to move to Preschool. Her response: "oh yes! They have a lot of neat things in that room!" lol So I think the teacher was projecting a little. It doesn't hurt that Preschool is $11 less per week... that will be nice. Next spring when Carly moves to the Toddler room we'll see a $17 a week savings. Hey, maybe we'll start getting those credit card bills paid off. :-)

My health status has been fine, yet an ongoing saga. In my last post I mentioned my great CT scans and my oncologist's good attitude about them. My happiness over these results lasted all of 5 days. The next week, I had a regularly scheduled followup with my urologist, Dr. K. He read my scan reports and said that he felt that we need to biopsy the enlarged lymph node in my abdomen. Since I am young, we should be treating agressively, and so forth. Now, in June, when my lung biopsy was ordered, Dr. R had mentioned the possibility of also biopsying the node in the abdomen. However, he said that he didn't think it was necessary at the time, and since he doesn't like introducing sharp objects around vital organs, he would not recommend the procedure at this time. Since the lung was negative, he never mentioned the node again. (By the way, I was talking to my dad's fiancee, to be known from here on out as Stepmom, about my tests. She reminded me that my dad had a lot of nodules in his body that came up in scans but were benign. He was just a "nodule guy". That made me feel a little more relaxed.) Anyhow, Dr. K said "with all due respect to Dr. R we need to do this biopsy". That statement made me somewhat angry. I felt like the biopsy was being ordered more as some kind of assertion of power more than as a necessary test. Dr. K gave my information to the scheduler and told me they would call me. He did mention that the radiologist might not agree to the procedure, and I wasn't surprised, since there is a considerable amount of "fluff" between my skin and the node.

This was on the 4th. Everyone in my life who knew what was going on bugged me about when my biopsy would be. Myself, I was dreading it. A biopsy means missing a day of work, being in pain, feeling anxious, and the possibility of 1) them hitting an organ, causing hemorrhaging and immediate emergency surgery, and/or 2) a bad result. Plus, I was feeling doubt... what if it is cancer? Then should I be mad at Dr. R? So, I emailed Dr. K and his assistant early the next week. He said they were still working on scheduling it but I would hear from them.

I ended up taking that Friday (the 13th, no less) off work. Carly's one-year well check was that day, I had scheduled my first mammogram for that day (more on that later) and I wanted to work on getting ready for Carly's party. Later in the afternoon I was on the phone when I heard a call on my call waiting, which I let roll to voice mail. It was the scheduler from Radiology! I called back and learned that the radiologist had canceled the procedure, and that Dr. K's office would be calling me. They still haven't called, despite an email from me last week. I'm not concerned but more than a little annoyed. I have felt the stress of this uncertainty all summer, and have unfortunately used my eating habits as a coping mechanism... which of course has only succeeded in bringing me back to my highest non-pregnant weight ever. I'm frustrated that this stress continued needlessly. All in all though, as long as I don't get bad news, I can't really complain too loudly.

Jim and I did face reality, by finally meeting with our estate attorney last month and signing our wills. This is never a fun task but it feels good to have things in order.

So on the 13th I also had my first mammogram. That was fun... not. Actually not *that* bad but certainly not pleasant IMO. The tech ws very nice though and I was in and out quickly. The next Tue I got a call from my doctor's office. They saw something on the film. "It's likely just a calcification but you need to have it checked." WHYWHYWHY?!?!? I swear, nothing is easy for me lately. Of course, I couldn't get the retest done at the office near my house because they don't have the needed equipment for the test. So the nurse says, the Breast Center will call you; if you don't hear from them by Friday, call us back. Friday comes, no call. I call my doctor's office back. The nurse I speak to says, "you have to call the Breast Center yourself." NO! I DO NOT! I was told that they would call me and to call back on Fri if I hadn't heard!!! So she starts reading my chart over the phone... the chart reads almost verbatim what I have just said. Then she says, "well, do you have the phone number for the BC?" Nooooo... because again, I WASN'T SUPPOSED TO CALL THEM. I'm not yelling at her but speaking verrrry firmly. So she tells me that she will call the BC herself and have them call me "because you need to have this checked." NO SHIT, SHERLOCK'S SISTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've been on pins and needles all week waiting for this call. Of course, I grab the phone every time it rings the rest of the day, but no call. No, of course not... they called my house, even though my work phone number is on my electronic chart. Of course, nobody was there when I got home and it's Friday. So I left the woman a message to PLEASE call me at work on Monday. She called back; I can come down to the hospital (where I have to pay for parking and shlep across the street) or the extension to the BC that is <5min from my office. I voted for B even though I'd have to wait a week or so longer for an appointment. The good part about this focused mammogram is that the radiologist reads it while you wait, so you know the results before you leave.

That appointment was last Friday. I arrived, changed into my too-small gown (grr) and waited my turn with an older woman and one in her 30s. After their exams, both were visited by the tech, bearing a piece of paper and the good news that everything was fine. I went in and got squashed again (and boy that hurts worse than the regular mammo) and sat to wait. I thought, if the radiologist comes out, I'm screwed. Fortunately the tech came out with the message "benign calcifications, see you next year". Thank God!!! What a relief. I joked with Jim that it is my right breast that has the calcifications because that breast was always my better producer when I was nursing and pumping. :-)

I'm sure I've forgotten something here, but you all are probably asleep or have bleeding eyes for now, so I'll head for bed now. And I will try to post again sooner.


Sherri said...

Glad to hear your mammogram was clean Liz. Boy, there is no end to the health scares you're subjected to huh? PVs that 2007 finds you in perfect health.

Scrappytbear said...

WoW they really put you through the Wringer! I am really glad that test was ok and wish there was some way to help you not worry about tests and such as they cause you such stress and unwanted results....just remember there isnt a whole lot you can do about these things other than working on getting them checked and dealing only when something needs dealing with!
Im thinking good thoughts for you! (Like I am sure that means loads to you, you're like WHO on earth is this? It's Teri-Lynn with the Annika who is a Nov 02 baby like your Becky and Ive been keeping up with you for more than 4 years now so I think that makes us Good Thinking Aquaintances LOL)

Liz said...

Aw, T-L, I knew it was you as soon as I saw your screen name! We Nov02 moms may not be too chatty anymore but we all still care about each other. :-) Thanks for your comments; you're right, this is mostly all out of my control. The blog lets me vent to my Good Thinking Acquaintances!

patience said...

ringI've had a couple of the diagnostic mammos when something out of the ordinary was found. Always something nicely benign thankfully. The technician called it a "pressure mammogram". When I told her I didn't know how they could use much more pressure than the regular one without a steam roller, she just smiled knowingly! After a few seconds, I truly felt like she was the devil incarnate!!