Tuesday, February 19, 2013

When You're Up, You're Down

August 2009 was a great time having come back from vacation, swinging a baseball bat again and celebrating one year of major accomplishments since the hip surgery. That alone deserved an entire year to celebrate. Just as a reminder, most of the doctors on my hospital case didn't hold out any hope that I would walk again following this surgery. Since then, I have done nothing but prove them wrong and walk continuously once I was up and stable.

White spot on bottom left of the bone, appears to be
more cancer within the pelvic bone.
Three more months would go by and the pain I was feeling in my right buttock area kept increasing. None of the tests we had done had any of the doctor concerned. From August to November, pain management was the only option that any of the doctors would entertain. After these three months, it was apparent to my surgeon that we needed to go back and do another PET Scan since my pain was only increasing. So, my mom flew back out to stay with me while I went through another battery of tests to see if there was a reason for the pain.

On November 2nd I had X-Ray's taken. As soon as the imaging came back, I had them sent directly to my surgeon in California. And I went through with having the PET Scan done as well. Time was closing in on Thanksgiving and mom and I were going to have a quiet meal at home. One day after one of my mid-day appointments, mom and I went to lunch at a local BBQ chain restaurant near my work. While ordering lunch, I received a call from my surgeon's nurse, Helen. Not much was said about the tests, however Helen made it clear that we should come back to California for additional testing, possibly another biopsy.

It was really difficult for me to concentrate on eating my lunch after this news. I was really upset by this news. I couldn't understand why after several "clear" tests in February and August, this test came back so questionable. The pain had been there for quite some time while the tests were negative. How could I have another mass again so fast?

So, mom and I had Thanksgiving and made it through to the next week. We left for California at the beginning of December so we could get to the City of Hope to begin another set of tests. I would undergo a bone scan to see if the density of my bones had been compromised and see if there was anything else the PET and CT Scans didn't pick up. They also did some more X-Rays and another CT to take a look at all aspects of the pelvic mass that appeared from nowhere, or so it seemed.

By mid-December, all tests were complete and I was meeting with my surgeon again to review everything. Of course, as soon as we saw him we wanted to know "why" all-of-a-sudden there was a mass that didn't show on the others in previous months. He explained that there had been evidence of something previously, but that it hadn't been large enough to be concerned at that time. What was troubling to me about this was the pain I had been telling him and other doctors about should have been a sign and something they should have taken seriously. I felt the good news they had been telling us over the past several months was just a bunch of bull. Despite the pain, I felt deflated as the positive reports turned to one of the worst pieces of news a cancer patient could get.

While this news was devastating to our family, it was another step in my faith journey that needed to be traveled. Some day, maybe not this side of eternity, I will understand why this journey has to be mine to take. Until then, to God be the glory forever and ever, Amen!

Next..."A Quilt, Surgery and a Nerf Sized Tumor"

"Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen." Jude 1:24-25

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