Friday, January 25, 2008

Old Friends and New Curves In The Road

After the stress of the past few weeks, it feels like life has temporarily gone back to normal. The difference this time is that I will never forget the feeling of getting my life back. I hope this feeling is something that I can draw on throughout my life to keep me in check with what I'm doing to ensure that I am focused on my family, doing what I love at work and sharing my journey and hope with other Cancer survivors.

This past week I visited my old friend Dr. Mew. She was there when I first got diagnosed and kept me focused and calm throughout those scary first few weeks in August, 2006. She was involved in 2 of my previous surgeries and more importantly, in assuring me that we would find a plan to "mop up the remaining cancer cells" after her great work in surgery. What blew me away is that this time when I found out the cancer was back and surgery would be our first line of defense, she was on vacation. After my initial panic, Dr. Webster assured me that we could wait until she got back. In speaking to her this week, she told me that Dr. Webster had actually tracked her down on her vacation with her family to discuss my recent diagnoses and their joint plan of attack. It was another affirmation that I have the right team behind me!

My surgery is still scheduled for this week on February 1. My parents are driving up the day before to be here for Ryan and I, but I think mostly for Talyn. This is always a huge help because Talyn gets so excited about them spending time with him, that he usually doesn't notice what's going on in the background. My surgery will involve a bit more than I had originally thought, mostly that they will need to put me under. Dr. Mew will be making an eclipse incision around the lump area that was recently removed. The problem is that once she gets in there, you can't clearly see where the cancer is. I know there's a lot of research going on currently to cure cancer, but can't someone make something that you can drink prior to surgery that attaches to the ugly cells and dies them black? That way, when a surgeon gets in there, they can see what to cut out!

Because she will be cutting deep to get everything she can out and there isn't lots there currently, the fear is that she may accidentally cut the implant. If that happens, she will need to remove it right away and she doesn't want that to all happen while I'm lying there awake and trying to stay calm (I told you she knows me well). The hope is that I'll be able to go home the same day, but because they never know what could happen, I might have to stay over one night.

Until my surgery, my normal life will continue. In many ways this is great, but it also sometimes catches me off guard when my mind drifts off to all of the other things we are currently dealing with. Tonight we are attending Ryan's year end party and then I will be traveling to our Denver office for the first time in 3 years.

The lesson that continues to be enforced in me throughout all of this is to always be prepared for something you haven't yet thought of. Sometimes this doesn't end up as you would have wanted it to, but it doesn't always end off badly either! So keep an open mind when dealing with new things and see where it takes you.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Tasha,
    This introduction to Dr. Mew is an astounding picture of dedication and determination from the medical side of things. Her personal interest in you and her long-term commitment to your recovery is inspiring. We will focus our energies on her steady hand and astute mind as she operates on you on February 1st.

    Your latest posting helps us to understand how important it is for you to have the "right team" behind you. Those of us who are indirectly supporting you from afar, take courage in reading about the team of doctors, close family members and old friends who are right there with you as you face this latest challenge.

    The image that you use of "new curves in the road" is life's course for all of us. We cannot know what lies ahead for ourselves or for the people closest to us. Being prepared for anything and keeping an open mind are two positive ways that we can face the future.

    The "lesson" being enforced in you right now is based on your own profound life experience and we thank you for your insights. In sharing your journey, you not only give hope to other cancer survivors, you give those of us who are getting to know you a boost of confidence to keep going, no matter what.

    Sincere best wishes,
    Louise and David