Read Part 1 before proceeding to see where I've been over the past two years!
During those 2 years it was easy to forget that I had cancer. (Well, we assumed I had a small tumor somewhere because my Tg number wasn't "0", but we just didn't know where). One thing that I always saw as a negative in myself is that I'm very absorbed in my immediate surroundings. My mind is focused on what is right in front of me: My day-to-day responsibilities, work, husband, caring for a newborn. I always saw it as a weakness. I'm a terrible long-distance friend (if I don't see you regularly it's hard to think about you) and I easily forget past events/conversations/people (who has time to mull over the past when I've got laundry to do!). I'm too focused on the now.
But what I've always seen as a weakness actually worked to my advantage. I honestly rarely thought about the disease and just lived my life. I was only consumed with worry and anxiousness on the days I went for my monthly blood draws. But once I got the results, I went on my merry way. Completely peaceful and unaware of what was going on inside my body.
But after those blissful two years, my time was up. Last October my Tg number skyrocketed to 20 and my doctor said, "No more." He was concerned that the cancer had grown and we needed to investigate immediately. Ultrasounds of my neck revealed nothing suspicious so we proceeded with a radioactive iodine scan and a CT scan of my head and neck.
I was scared. Really scared. All of the peace that was with me over the past years flew out the window and "worst case scenario" was in the forefront of my mind. It's funny how Satan can make you feel like you've learned nothing through all your trials; that you're back at square one.
At the end of October, after two weeks of a low-iodine diet, I took a small dose of radioactive iodine and was scanned head to toe. Nothing suspicious lit up, so we proceeded with a CT scan just to cover our bases. Let's cross all the T's and dot every I there is! And in December I received the best Christmas gift possible; my doctor confirmed that there was absolutely no cancer. Despite my elevated Tg numbers, there was no evidence of the disease in my body.
Talk about a dance party! Such a weight, that I didn't know existed, was lifted off my shoulders. After years of assuming I was living with cancer (stable cancer, but cancer nonetheless) I officially got the answer that I am healthy.
So where does that leave me now? I still get my blood checked regularly. And on March 13th I have a follow-up CT scan to insure, again, that there is no cancer growth. My fingers are crossed that after we get clean results we can move these appointments further and further apart. I can't wait for the day when my doctor says, "See you next year!"