Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Oncologist

I apologize in advance for the stream of consciousness writing. I'm a bit shook up. I keep having to remind myself that doctors are there to help me. I dread every visit. They are all very kind and compassionate, but despite that, I dread the appointments.
Today I was bombarded with information. It was overwhelming. I tried to be brave, but only made it half-way through my appointment before I completely broke down. All the details of chemo, all the side effects, all the possible complications, surgery, radiation, more chemo, more side effects, more possible complications...scary words like heart failure, anaphylactic shock, blood transfusion. Then another exam where they wrinkle their brow and poke around, feeling body parts that seem very distant from breast cancer...like my feet. What in the world could be wrong with my feet? I really don't want to know. I didn't even ask.
At first they said the MRI indicated that the cancer was isolated to the area they knew about. But then they said there was a lymph node in my chest that was a little big, but probably nothing to worry about. Of course, it is hard NOT to worry about it. Then they said there was a little spot on my liver. Once again, probably nothing to worry about. But then the doctor did an exam of my abdomen and ordered a CT scan. Honestly, my courage is failing. Another test. More results. More waiting. More dread.

Friday (6/25): CT Scan, Echo Cardiogram, Chemo Ed.
Monday (6/28): Port Surgery
Friday (7/2): Chemo starts

It's all a blur. I don't quite remember everything they said but I think that one drug will be administered weekly, then a different one every third week. I'm young and the cancer is aggressive so they will treat it with everything they've got. Three to four months of chemo. Then a mastectomy. Then more chemo, radiation and hormone blockers.

Thank you friends for your continued prayers, words of encouragement, calls, emails, letters, gifts. I can't express how very much they mean to me. Each one coming at the opportune time. Each one bringing tears of joy and thankfulness. You are all so dear to me!

Hear my cry, O God;
Attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You,
When my heart is overwhelmed;
Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
~Psalm 61:1-2

12 comments:

  1. Oh sweet friend, I am so sorry. In our home you have been constantly spoken of and petitioned over in prayer. We love you and ask that The Lord will attend to your prayer and lead you to a high rock.

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  2. Steph, I am sitting here lifting you up in prayer as I type. I can't even imagine the strength it must take to just function. Our Lord, mighty physician and healer is in control and He loves you. God be with you sweet friend.

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  3. Steph, I'm so sorry that it's so difficult and overwhelming. We are continually praying for you. I pray right now for peace to flood your being and your family. For God's grace to empower you to continue to face each day (each appointment!) with the courage you have exhibited through Christ thus far. You ARE LOVED. You are in my heart and on my mind.

    Love you,
    Steph

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  4. Steph, it does sound scary, keep hold of your courage, you are one of the strongest people I know! You have a family and friends that are here for support in every way shape and form.
    You are on my mind and in my heart always.

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  5. I pray that God will reveal His purpose in this and that His hand of healing be on you.

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  6. I'm praying for you friend. That is a load to take in in one day. But remember what you said, "stay in the moment." What you have to do today, do today. What you have to do tomorrow, do tomorrow. You're a wise women:) Love you.

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  7. The circles of people praying for you is growing quickly. That is some power at work. God is good, thank you for that reminder. God is good and He loves His kids. I love you.

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  8. Ceaseless thoughts and prayers for you and your family. I am sorry you feel so alone, so lost. I pray the terror is replaced with calm, and that your fear is replaced with hope. xoxo Leila

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  9. My heart breaks for you, Stephanie. But I know you are stronger than you think, because He is your strength. We pray for your healing daily.

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  10. Stephanie...

    We pray for you many times a day. Please let us know how we can help you out.

    Miranda

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  11. Thinking of you this evening, and this song keeps running through my heart... It kinda says it all.

    Love you!
    Inis

    When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
    When sorrows like sea billows roll;
    Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
    It is well, it is well, with my soul.
    Refrain:
    It is well, with my soul,
    It is well, it is well, with my soul.
    Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
    Let this blest assurance control,
    That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
    And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
    My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
    My sin, not in part but the whole,
    Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
    Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
    For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
    If Jordan above me shall roll,
    No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
    Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
    But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
    The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
    Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
    Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!
    And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
    The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
    The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
    Even so, it is well with my soul.

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  12. Oh steph....I didn't even know. I will be praying for you for sure!!! You are surrounded with love and peace even when you do not feel it. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you or family. Love you lots and may God's love surround you with a shield!!! Love Michelle Hagner

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