Dilemma

Yesterday was my first scan after my horrible one in September. Since then (as I hope you have read), I have changed many different things in regards to my treatment and lifestyle. Yesterday was the day to see if all that has paid off.

40 minutes before my appointment with my surgeon my mother and I were relaxing in the hospital Second Cup when I felt a pat on the head. Dr. Jay in his scrubs and what seemed to be fresh out of surgery. So now in rough quotes is what we discussed:

“Oh hello! I can just quickly update you now but then I would like to see you next week once the radiologist gives me his report on your scans. They were good, really good actually. From what I can tell they all have shrunk and some have disappeared even. I think there are 4 left on your lung and 2 on your liver? All of them seem to be superficial as well. I want to wait for the report and speak to Dr.Ko, but we might be able to get rid of them for you.”

This moment was mixed – happiness obviously that everything is working, but confusion and another feeling I have yet to name. 

“Surgery? So you can remove them laparoscopicly?”

“Ha ha no. I have hacked at your liver so many times I would need a full visual.”

“So you want to cut. Cut me down my front. Again. For the third time….. I don’t know about this. I was so weak and my body will have to recover and that could make everything worse.”

“I know it is a lot to think about. I didn’t think we would be here again either to tell you the truth. Hell when I first met you I saw your scan I can honestly say I never thought you would be in my office again. But you suprised me then and again you are suprising me today. Let’s be honest. You have stage 4 cancer. I can cut it out and the chance of reoccurance is still high. What this could do though is buy you some time off of chemo, so you can have a some what regular life.”

“If you want me to consider this then next week you better have an amazing game plan. Something like you are going to cut this shit out and then pay for me to go to Jamaica.”

He laughed. “I’ll come up to visit you during chemo next week and we will chat.”

So I am sure most of you are thinking – “YAY! Cut that shit out!” And now I will explain to you in short form (as my mind is running a mile a minute) the dilemma in my head.

Scenario 1: We operate. – I would not only have to heal my front AGAIN I would also have incisions from my lung which would mean a chest tube AGAIN. So how am I sleeping? Not on my stomach, my sides or my back. Even after all that with the shitty recovery, and the drugs I hate being on, and then months of pain, and I have a puppy who will jump and not understand, and the chance of infection, and hospital complications… I will be so weak that it could grow again. So the surgery was for nothing and I’m back on chemo.

Scenario 2: We stay on course. – If some have already disappeared and others have shrunk then let’s just keep me on the low dose of chemo and keep my healthy lifestyle up. It’s obviously working for me and I feel great. But then we know I still have the cancer in me because we can see it. And there may come a point where they stop shrinking, and the amount of chemo in my system will make having a surgery too risky. So now they could grow and get worse.

Scenario 3: We wait for one more scan. – Have a couple more doses of chemo and check back in to see what the boys are doing. Maybe they are all gone now? Or maybe something fucked up happened and they grew weird and now surgery is back off the table and I’m fucked all over again. 

Scenario 4: I somehow convince Dr. Jay who is a world class surgeon, who people fly in to have him use his God like hands to operate – that he is wrong. He can operate laparoscopicly and he just has to figure it out. Go back to the skills lab like I see in Greys Anatomy and make a replica of my liver and figure it the fuck out. This is a pipe dream I know, but you bet your ass I will say this to him on Wednesday.

So as you can see this is just a small picture as to the confusion in my head, and now I have to chose one that is right for me. They can all lead to health and they can all lead to shit. This is my dilemma. 

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8 thoughts on “Dilemma

  1. Kathleen Buttrigney says:

    you are a talented writer, I stayed up most of the nite reading your blog and you have completely captured the essence of having cancer, the anger, the fear, the sadness, the hope and the ability to see the humour in the crazy things that happen in between the serious stuff.

    I hope u do win that blog award and that your writing will be able to reach more people so they can benefit from your honesty and know that they aren’t alone in their feelings

    your determination to keep trying new ways to make yourself well and to LIVE life is inspiring me to make changes in my life, thank you

    your current dilemma is difficult, I wonder what would happen if you did chemo a while longer, would the cancer shrink enough to do laparoscopic surgery, what if it did disappear

    what is better: taking it out while you can see it or waiting until it disappears and there isn’t anything to operate on, could that even happen

    which option gives a better chance of it not coming back

    thank you for sharing, without a filter, what it’s really like

    Kathleen
    from your colon cancer group

    • Jamie says:

      Kathleen!!! That is so nice of you to say! šŸ™‚

      I’m anxiously waiting to see what my naturopath has to say because I’m sure her patients have had the same dilemma before!

      • Kathleen Buttrigney says:

        yes u are right, she probably has, I wonder what she will recommend. you have a great medical team

        Kathleen

  2. Gail says:

    Just finished every word. Fuck cancer. You have quite a decision to make, but whatever it is, it will be the right one. I’m a certified fitness professional and have been for over 23 years. If you ever have a question on health, fitness and nutrition, I am here to help you. God bless you and I will continue to read along. xxxxxx

    • Jamie says:

      Thank you Gail! I loved waking up this morning and reading all your comments! Cancer is definitely an asshole but I am hoping tomorrow we will devise a plan to remove it for good!

  3. Kathleen Buttrigney says:

    hi jamie
    i was wondering how your appointents went?
    kathleen

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