I woke up in the middle of the night last night thinking lots of what if’s. What if the prof says I can still go on holiday? What if I can’t? What if I have to have surgery? What if I don’t ? What if the cancer has spread? Blah, blah, blah. I have so many questions whizzing around in my head and not one single answer. That’s the scariest thing about Cancer – the not knowing.
Still, bright eyed and bushy tailed, the prof is on the phone at 7.15 am while I’m getting ready for work and he’s all business. He tells me what I already know and says that if he knew in March what he knows now, I’d have had a total thyroidectomy back then. When I tell him I’m due to leave on holidays in 2 days he seems unperturbed. Yay! Then he asks me how long I’m going for? When I say a month, there’s a heavy pause. It’s at that moment that I really kiss my holiday goodbye and he asks me not if, but when, I want my surgery. Sooner rather than later would be good I say. He assures me that this type of cancer is, and I quote “is 100% curable.” I figure you can’t get a better prognosis than that! Five minutes later, true to his word, his secretary phones me and books me in for surgery on Monday 10th. Fast work!
So heavy hearted, off I go for my last day at work. But instead of heading off on holiday to France, I’m heading off to hospital. What’s that they say about the best laid plans?!
My bosses and colleagues are awesome and incredibly supportive about everything. I’m a bit shell shocked to tell you the truth, and make it through the morning on autopilot. I leave early and come home, and spend the rest of the day cancelling all the flights and hotels we had booked, getting blood tests and filling out a mountain of hospital admission paperwork.
Late in the afternoon, Geraldine gets me an appointment with an endocrinologist which I guess, is the medical name for a gland doctor. Fortunately, the hospital is round the corner from our place, and the Endo is also a stones throw away. She’s called Anne and very approachable, up front and can answer a whole heap of my questions (which I like) – we have a big chat, she tells me and I quote, that the surgeon “will clear my neck ou,t” gives me the lowdown on Thryoid Cancer and we arrange another rendezvous for after the op. She also fills me in on the subsequent radioactive iodine treatment and sets up an appointment for me with the Nuclear Medicine team at the hospital. She assures me that this can be arranged for mid November as I’m desperate to be able to go to Perth for our friends’ Steve and Stace’s wedding. We’ve been sooo looking forward to this for such a long time and David’s going to be a groomsman too. It’s really important to us both that we can go. Yay! I’m feeling pretty upbeat and positive and head back into the city for Friday night drinks with my work buddies.
On the way home, we put my new mantra into practice, “Live for the moment” and head round the corner to our local Eastern European eatery where we feast on thoroughly unhealthy but oh, so hearty, stuff like goulash and pork belly. The ultimate comfort food.