Well, we had our second opinion visit at the James Cancer Hospital today. It was interesting coming out of the appointment and talking with Sandi about it. She was on could nine and I was basically in tears. Perspective is everything and I will explain. I will split this post into two parts.
Part I: The Good Stuff
1. I maintained my weight the last to weeks. MAJOR accomplishment for me. I am hovering around 156 pounds and holding steady.
2. The doctor told us that the chemo regimen that I am on is the chemo regimen I should be on. It was great to hear a second opinion from a doctor who is a/the top doctor at the James that is treating this type of cancer. He travels the globe speaking on gastro-intestinal cancer and has done much research on it. It is nice to know that I have been on the right track.
3. The doctor really discussed surgery. Sandi and I are all for it, although I am scared to death to have a major surgery like this. He wants us to meet with a top surgeon as soon as Tuesday, if I can get in. The surgeon he wants me to see is a surgeon that only deals with stage 4 cancer patients and has also pioneered a new in-surgery procedure called a chemo wash. We will learn much more about all of this when we meet with the surgeon. The basic of the chemo wash is that during surgery, the surgeon will wash my internal organs with chemo drugs. I’ll try to explain more in another post as soon as I learn more about this. This surgeon is the only one doing this procedure in the state of Ohio and surrounding states. Looks like the surgery may take place in the next four to six weeks.
It is great to see God open doors. Not only did I get to see the top colo-rectal doctor at the James, but I get to see the top surgeon as well. I also get to see these physicians in a very short time frame and didn’t have to wait three or four months.
Part II: The not so good stuff (aka, Stef’s human perspective)
WARNING: I am getting VERY real here. I am going to be open, honest and frank, just so you know.
OK, we asked the hard questions again, but I hate to hear the answers. My prognosis has not changed much. He is giving me a 50/50 chance to make it to two years. With the surgery and some aggressive chemo, maybe I get five to six years. I have to stop asking the questions, because I am tired of hearing the answer that I get to die. Don’t get me wrong, it was a good visit and we got some good news, great options and all that, but when you are living this and the doctors keep telling you that they will do everything to give me a few more years is just impossible to hear. I DON’T WANT TO DIE and that is basically what every physician is telling me. AAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!! I mean, come on, what did I do to deserve this!! This is just too crazy for me to continue to try and wrap my head around. Told you I was going to be real.
After crying for a little while, I got my act back together enough to post tonight. Maybe I just slipped into a state of denial. Maybe the chemo one week, off chemo the next, routine was just that, a routine. Am I not taking this serious? Am I really in complete denial? We have not had the hard conversations with physicians for some time, so maybe this jarred me back to reality. Either way, it is hard to hear someone tell you that you only have years to live.
So, overall, it was a good visit. We did get some good news and I do like the aggressive nature of these doctors. I know I was a little real in this post, but don’t get me wrong, my faith in God is strong. I am human and this stuff really messes with your head. Prayer, scripture, and God’s grace are the only things that will get me through this. God is in control and I need to follow his lead.
So, pray for our meeting with the surgeon. Begin to pray that the surgery will be successful. Pray for my mental strength (I’m not losing my mind, but just hard to hear the hard answers). Thanks for reading and listening!!