Wednesday, July 27, 2011


you know, limbo.
I met with Dr. L, the pulmonologist, today (I figure I will try to give out some anonymity whenever possible).  Although we waited for more than 45 minutes to see him, he was very patient and kind once we got into his office.  He looked at my recent scans (and showed them to us on the computer - I still think it's very cool how you can look at a moving cross section of your insides), listened to all that I had to say, and gave me a prescription for time.  He does not believe going on steroids is necessary or would even be helpful, as the side effects would probably outweigh the benefits.  He thinks that my symptoms are not even pulmonary, even though I feel like I'm breathing through cotton balls all the time. 

So it's back to the cardiologist I go.  In less than two weeks, I will repeat an echocardiogram to make sure there is no structural damage that could be causing my mystery symptoms.  In my mind, I'm already trying to decide which hospital will host me for my stem cell transplant (somewhere with clean air and very knowledgeable and kind medical staff).  While everyone wants to roll their eyes at me, I can't shake the feeling that it still seems inevitable.   

The bronchoscopy final results are in (thank you, Dr. L for sharing this information with me).  The good news:  everything's negative.  The bad news: everything's negative.  Not that I would enjoy harboring a fungal infection, but I would appreciate some answers.  It is so frustrating to visit, call and email doctor after doctor, only to be referred to a different doctor.  No explanations, no magic pills, no free lunch in this town, that's for durn sure.  I was complaining about this to my brother the other night on the phone, when he reminded me they call it "practicing" medicine for a reason.

I wish I were just conjuring these feelings up - I wish it was all caused by anxiety.  But I promised myself I would trust my body, I would listen to the aches and pains instead of ignoring them and deprioritizing myself. 

If it were only time that I needed, you'd think insurance would cover that.  After all, the cost of daily living is most definitely lower than the cost of chemo and radiation.  Alas, no.  I have to make a decision about work, and fast, as these summer days do not last forever.  I'm stuck here, not wanting to make a decision that could cost me a spot in my school, because maybe all I need is a few more months to heal.

If any of you faithful readers have a crystal ball you can lend me, I think I'd be really good at Divination...



  1. I agree with you -trust your body. You are a badass survivor cancer warrior after all!

  2. PS - super love the picture!

  3. I hate that you have to think about work. Would they let you go back mid-year?

  4. It's great you don't have to go on pred. That stuff eats away at your bones. Gosh, that sucks you have to make a decision about your job straight away. I don't know what sort of school/class you have, but if it's a nice little class, it could be quite healing. I decided to use my bump in the road, as an opportunity to try new things as I wasn't that in love with classroom teaching. It could also be quite good for moving beyond this as teaching will definitely mean you will have more moments where you will forget what you've been through. On the other hand, life's really short. ...hmm toss a coin? Sorry..not much help :) x