(my journey through cancer… continued…)
As my doctor finished the colonoscopy he stated that he wanted to talk to us before we went home. Alarms were going off in my somewhat drugged, foggy mind. This can't be good was the most prevalent thought forcing me to try and focus.
"I'm pretty sure it's cancer," he began saying, "but we will biopsy it and make a plan from there. The doctor described the cancer as being black and appearing on the right side of my colon. My "let's just be extra careful, we'll probably not find anything" procedure had resulted in talk of an up-and-coming fourth surgery.
The pathology came back malignant and the surgery date was set. I began to reflect over the past couple of years and realized some warning signs had been there and unfortunately, ignored. When we were in the process of adopting our youngest child, Olivia, two years prior, Eddie and I each had to have a physical and blood tests. I had just arrived home from the lab when the phone rang, and it was the doctor on duty. She began by saying, "You must be exhausted. You are extremely anemic." I thought about that and said, "Why, yes I am. I often have no energy." In fact, moments before, I had said to Ed that I just want to crawl into bed. Mind you, it was only 7:00 p.m.
This caring doctor ordered all kinds of tests to be done immediately. However, when my primary doctor called a few days later, she talked me out of pursuing this. Looking back, I am convinced the cancer was already there and growing, causing the anemia.
Colon surgery is not for wimps- very, very hard. My difficulties began in the recovery room. For whatever reason the epideral failed, leaving me writhing with pain. The anesthesiologist could not get to me for 9 hours! I was suffering and literally crying out. The post-op nurse was beyond kind. She, along with Eddie, did their best to comfort me. What was so amazing was that when the anesthesiologist FINALLY had a minute to deal with me and make the needed adjustment, there was instant relief.
I stayed in the hospital six long, hard days. I got very sick and was extremely sore. They had removed 12" of my colon as well as cleared the margins where the uterine cancer had been. I had stage II cancer that had penetrated the colon walls, but not the lymph nodes.
I was flooded with all kinds of cards, flowers and visitors. There were many blessings during my hospital stay. My friend, Wendy, was even kind enough to help me wash my hair when it got so gross I could hardly stand it. Another friend, Janet, would "babysit" me when Eddie needed to run a few errands. She even became my "bouncer" when visitors were insisting on seeing me and I was SO sick.
On the sixth day, Eddie and I were visiting with my surgeon in the hospital room. He couldn't believe Ed had stayed all those nights with me, sleeping on a little cot. His comment was, "Everyone should have an Eddie." He was thoroughly impressed with my considerably caring husband.
In spite of all the extreme difficulties that came with this surgery, I found myself being very thankful that there had been a reoccurrence of the uterine cancer. If the uterine cancer had not returned with the follow-up catscan ordered, the colon cancer would not have been found, and I could have been in real trouble down the road. This horrible week in my life became an acknowledgment of a profound miracle God had done on my behalf and I was sincerely grateful.
Phil. 1:19 "For I know that through your prayers and the help given by the spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance."
(Actual date of this surgery was Feb. 2009).
Read and post comments | Send to a friend