Sep 12, 2013 - 2:02 pm
In August 2008 my son turned 5 years old. At the time we had a 2 1/2 year old daughter and I was pregnant with our third, a girl. During the actual birth of that third child in November 2008 it was discovered that I had Stage IV colon cancer with multiple liver mets (5) on both sides of my liver, largest being 5 cm. I went through chemo, had surgery, had some more chemo, had a cardiac arrest and then had my last chemo treatment in November 2009.
On August 2 my son turned 10 years old. TEN YEARS OLD!! I can't believe that almost 5 years have passed and that I just had my 4 1/2 year NED scan. Next Monday that little baby girl who turned out to be my angel starts her last year of pre-school. She will be 5 (FIVE) in November.
I had the CT done a few weeks ago and am happy to report that Dr. K at MSK gave me the good news that I was still in remission. Even better, I met a friend at MSK on my appointment day. My friend had his HAI pump implanted the same week my liver resection took place. His liver was covered with tumors and his doctor in Ohio told him that going to NYC would be a mistake, that he would die there, that he should just go home and die with his children and wife by his side. My friend didn't listen to his advice and when I saw him I was so happy to see how healthy and happy he looked. He was there getting scan results (4 years remission since his liver resection) and was planning on getting his HAI pump removed. So it was a good day, a great day. Next scan is in 24 weeks and when/if I make that a clean scan I will schedule removal of my HAI pump.
Five years ago I didn't dare think of how my son would look at 10. I would cry when catalogs came in the mail with little girl models at 6 and 7 and 8 and 9. I thought how I would never see my little girls at that age. It broke my heart. I still don't take it for granted that I will see my children grow to adulthood but I have more hope and I wanted to share that with the board. When I first came here I read every story about Stage IV patients and would write their names in my notebook, especially those that had lived far past their doctors' predictions. I read that list at night before bed and memorized the list of names. I still read that list sometimes and by posting my news I do so to share that hope with others here that are earlier on in their journey.
I don't think about cancer every single day like I used to. Some days I get in bed and realize I hadn't thought of cancer that whole day. It is amazing to me as at one point it was all I could think about. But, what has not left me since my diagnosis is a true and complete appreciation of every single day. Rain? Humid and hot? Whatever, don't care. I just drove my car through some water and needed a new engine. Didn't phase me or my husband a bit. My husband leaves his socks and sweaty t-shirts on the floor. I pick them up happily and hug them tight before they get the Tide treatment. Someone doesn't talk to me or snubs me? Who cares? It's not my business what anyone thinks of me. I know people disagree about whether cancer has brought anything positive to their lives but I can say that for me, waking up each day with a smile on my face is what I have chosen to take away from this experience.
Love and hugs to all,
cross-posted at colonclub