I don’t get stressed before I get my results anymore but I totally feel like a fourth Musketeer. You know, on guard. Especially when we get to the pointy end of the waiting game, like the day of the results, or in the waiting room (my endo is always fashionably late.)
You know that one time when they told me I was cancer free and then I went for my check up to find I was riddled with cancer, yeah, that time, well, it taught me an invaluable lesson. When it comes to cancer, don’t take anything for granted. So now I don’t.
So these days, when the six monthly tests roll around, I hope for the best but expect the worst.
On Friday there was no beating around the bush. It was good news from the get go.
The ultrasound says my neck is empty. And long may it stay that way.
The blood tests say my antibodies are going down, down, down. Those antibodies sure do move slow, but as long as down they go, I’m happy.
The scales say… well that’s not such good news, so let’s move on shall we?
In fact, everything was so good, and so much time has passed since my thyroidectomy, radioactive iodine and all that jazz, that I don’t have to be tested, checked or prodded for another year.
I’m not sure how I feel about that. I certainly like the freedom that a 12 month reprieve allows. And I’m definitely high fiving my health for being good. But I can’t help but feel a little bit anxious that a year is a long time inbetween check ups. A lot can happen in a year. More to the point, a lot of cancer can grow in a year. I definitely have mixed feelings about being cut off from my doctor’s coat tails.
Good news like this is always followed by a long exhale (and something bubbly.) I always feel like a prisoner on death row who just got a reprieve. It’s like a pleasant surprise with a hefty portion of surrealism on the side.
I see the whole cancer experience, the diagnosis, the treatment, the whole shebang as a lonely little house in the wilderness. I spent a big chunk of 2011 in that house fighting for my life.
As I’ve travelled along the road to recovery, I get further and further away from that house, but you know, the house is always there, and if I look back, I can see it and remember everything that happened. If I’m honest, I like seeing it there, because I want to remember, I don’t want to forget how far I’ve come or take for granted how lucky I am to be travelling this road I’m on.
Every six months, or now every year, I’m drawn back and cautiously stand outside that house, waiting for a set of results that will either make me stay or allow me to carry on my journey.
I’m so thankful that there is so much time and distance between me and that house.
I can hardly believe that it’s been three years already. That house is almost a tiny dot. But it’s still there. It always will be.
Now I’ve told you my good news, will you tell me yours?