Monday, January 12, 2015

Step 1: Just Calm Down ({Day 11})

I'm still trying to calm down about this whole situation. I feel like its so hard to make plans for anything in the future because I have no idea of when my treatments will be. But I'm just going to keep. going. Friday, January 9th was my first appointment with a hematological Oncologist. I am happy to now say he is my oncologist. He has quite the personality ((for a doctor)) and I felt very confident with him. He knows his shit too so of course that's great. 

I imagined sitting in an office on the other side of a super expensive dark espresso Oak desk, with tall shelves full of books around us, with family pictures and college degrees hanging all over. Nope, not like that at all. The Cancer Center I'm going too is quite new and really big. The first part where we met with my Oncologist was in just a pretty normal doctor office type room. We met for about an hour and I brought my note book with a page front and back full of questions. He gave me his schpheel and really wrote down and visually helped me understand what we knew so far was going on. He also explained that we still don't know much about what was going on with me since we still only have my biopsy results to go off of. He's just guessing Stage II and I really hope he's right... he did tell me that if he had to pick a type of Cancer to get that Hodgkins Lymphoma would be at the top of the list. That made me feel pretty good. Then I had some blood taken, met with a bunch of other staff and met with the scheduler to get my first appointments. They don't even let you choose they just hand you a calender with your appointments. I also got about 25 different books/pamphlets about cancer and different things. My bag was so heavy! This day was very hard for me. It was just emotionally draining and basically a harsh reality check. I never thought I would be in this position, especially SO young. I never thought that I, a healthy 28 year old woman who has changed her unhealthy habits would get Cancer. Anyway, onto the schedule...

All this week and the first part of next week I have tests:

Monday: Pulmonary Function Test-This is to make sure my heart is strong enough for the Chemo drugs. If I have a weaker heart there is a chance one of the drugs can make it weaker. If I have a normal heart he said not to worry.

Tuesday: Pulmonary Function Test and "Chemo Class"- the first part is a test to see if my lungs are strong and if I have any allergic reaction to one of the drugs in my chemotherapy regimen. Then later my hubby and I will go to a class and learn everything we need to know about chemo and ask all my questions. 

Friday: More blood work and BONE MARROW BIOPSY- the first is self explanatory. But then, they have to take a sample of my bone marrow from my hip to make sure that the Cancer cells haven't spread to my bone marrow. Heard this hurts a bit, but I'm ready.
Tuesday (20th): PET Scan  & appointment with Onc: A Pet scan is where you have to drink a radio active dye that basically goes to any part of your body where there is cancer. Its at 1:00 in the afternoon and I get the pleasure of fasting until then and very low carbs the day fun! THEN the moment I've been waiting for. I will meet with my oncologist and we will go over all the results and find out what stage I'm at. I will find out how many courses of chemo therapy I will need and what else is going to happen...we will also schedule my chemo sessions.

So basically I now know my schedule until the 20th which is nice. I'm sad because my ladies day Ski class that I'm doing with a friend is Tuesday's but beating this and getting my life put back together comes first! ALSO, I'm so happy he said he doesn't see anything wrong with me still going on our Florida Vacation in February. So pumped, but slightly nervous! If I don't feel comfortable with it I won't go. But we just have to wait and see.

I was very very anxious this past week, almost devastatingly anxious. My chest was so tight all the time and sometimes I felt like I couldn't breath. My onc prescribed me a low dose anxiety pill I can take when I feel really anxious but I will use it sparingly. I've only taken it once and it did help A LOT. I am going to live my life as normal as possible. That's all I can do. I do feel like I have no control over anything and can't make any plans because I only know my schedule a week and a half out for now.  However, I feel like I'm starting to come to terms with this a little more each day. There is nothing I can do to change my diagnosis, but there is PLENTY I can do to make my time FIGHTING this better. I am looking so so so forward to starting treatment and beating this bastard inside of me (thats what she said ha!) I know their will be side effects but those are minimal compared to the side effect of the option of no chemo!

Here are a few fun pics from Hunter's birthday party! I just can't believe how fast my boys are growing.

i'm in the pink


I will also list each day of my journey this is with each post. Day 1 is Dec 29, 2014 the day I was diagnosed. I saw this on another lymphoma fighters blog and I really like the idea.

ALSO, don't be mad that I haven't responded to blog comments I've had the wrong email on their! Changing it now!

Lots of love xoxo- Annie


  1. Hi Annie! I found your blog via FB and the Lymphoma/Hodgkin's page. Although I don't have Hodgkin's my 17 yo daughter does and has been in treatment since 12/2/14. I have been filled with anxiety since her diagnosis, but each treatment brings her closer to being well. She never felt sick prior to her diagnosis and we were just lucky she had a cold which resulted in an x-ray. The x-ray showed enlarged lymph nodes in her chest. Within 6 days of the xray, she had a CT scan, biopsy, PET scan and diagnosis. She started treatment a week later. She's stage 2A (she had enlarged clavicle AND mediastinal lymph nodes). Since she's 17 you probably won't be doing the same chemo protocol as she is, but it is DOABLE. Most adults I see with Hodgkin's are doing ABVD (four different chemo drugs) which is a treatment every 14 days for 6 mths. Emily's is 3 days of inpatient every 21 days with an outpatient treatment on day 8. The first cycle may be your hardest because you don't know what anti-nausea drugs will work. I know there are so many unknowns right now and all the testing is scary, but you will get through it. Keep us posted on how your testing goes. Kelley Franks

  2. Even though it stinks to have to start this journey, I'm glad you're on the path and moving forward on it and learning some things and getting some answers. I'm sure by the end of next week it'll be good to know the longer term schedule and what to expect and all that. What took you to the dr in the first place so that you found this out?