Saturday, September 21, 2013

September 30th

9 days until my surgery.

It's scheduled for September 30th at 9 am. The doctor, who I saw yesterday, said it could take an hour or 3 depending on what they find. The order for surgery has a lot of long words on it but mostly it says exploratory.

I still don't think it's the C word. One good thing is that the blood test I took for ovarian cancer came back 31 which is slightly above the negative line but he said it really depended on the lab and their tolerance levels. That he would be worried if it was 300 or 400 but 31 is nothing.

But I guess that doesn't rule out the possibility that it's a different type. Which is why it's exploratory and why they will be doing a biopsy during it. But he told me that even if that is negative, it is just preliminary and we have to wait for the full test to come back so more surgery could happen. But if it comes back positive, then they will take everything and see if it has spread to other areas.

I know he has to tell me all the possibilities before and that they probably won't happen. It's just...there's just too many IFs right now. While I know generally what's going to happen, I just don't know what they are going to find or have to do. I really am trying not to think worst case scenario but I did cry last night. Nights are the worst. I wake up and my mind starts racing and I can't go back to sleep.

I don't want to be a grown up!

Being a grown up sucks. While I really want to just curl up in a ball and let someone else deal with the appointments for CT scans, blood, pre-op, asking for leave from work, filing for disability, getting things ready for the hospital and after, etc., I put my big girl panties on and am getting it done. It would be nice to have someone to help me with it though. Sometimes being single sucks too.

It's Saturday and while all my peeps are out racing and doing long runs, I'm at work prepping like crazy for my staff so things won't be too bad for them while I'm out for 6 to 8 weeks. The doctor said I should plan for 8 weeks. Sigh. There goes my PTO.

It's going to be a long 8 weeks. He said no driving for the first 2 weeks. And that I could do short walks but not to tire myself out. And that I will get tired. Will it be more tired than I am right now? I hope not.

I think we have the plan set for after. I'm going to stay at my mom's after the surgery for a while. And my sister, dad, and stepmom are coming for the surgery. One other good thing is that I am having it at the hospital where my cousin is the Director of Nursing so I know that she will help me through it and my family too. She's been a big help to my mom who was really worried. We are pretty lucky to have her for this.

So yes, I'm nervous and I'm dreading 8 long weeks of being inactive and trying to fill my time with things so I don't go crazy. But...I can't wait to get this out of me so I don't feel like an alien is trying to make it's way out of my stomach anymore. I can't wait to not be tired and nauseous and not have an achy back and stomach and have to pee all the time. I can't wait to feel normal again. I can't wait to start my way back to running.

I hope this wasn't too much of a pity party. I just needed to get some of these thoughts out. So thank you for listening. And for all of your prayers.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

So It's Surgery

I guess it was a little more serious than I thought…

I had kind of rough day on Sunday so I called the doctor on Monday to see if there were any cancellations I could take to move my appointment up. His office people said no so I resigned myself to waiting until October 10th to see him. But then I got lucky. They called me back and said they had done some research and could I come in at 4:50 on Wednesday? I said YES!


So I had my appointment yesterday and I found out I will have to have surgery. Sadly, it won't be laparoscopic like I'd hoped. I guess the mass/cyst is a little bit bigger than we'd thought. He said "It's this big." and held his hands out. Much farther out than I would have preferred. He said "It's as big as a basketball."


But also...oh, this explains so much! The being tired, the aches and pains, having to go all the time, the feeling like an alien being is trying to make it's way out of my stomach.

Anyway, he said I would have to have surgery and it would be a 3 day hospital stay and then a 6-8 week recovery. I don't know the exact date for the surgery yet but he said in a couple of weeks. First I have to have more blood work done and also get a CT scan. Neither him nor I are thinking the C word but that's what the blood work and CT scan are for, I think. And he also said they would be doing a biopsy during the procedure and that would determine how much they take out.

So, I'm relieved to know exactly what's going to happen and what I need to plan for. I'm freaked out a little that there's something so big growing inside me. When I told Josh he said "basketball is like a baby". I said "yeah, but there's no prize at the end". It's hard to wrap my mind around it.

I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared about the surgery. And a little nervous about what they will find/how much they will take. I don't want to go into menopause already. Not that I was planning on having kids but there may have still been a teeny, tiny hope it could accidentally happen. I would not have been sad if I "accidentally" became a mom at 45. My friend Cliff, surprisingly, was the one who brought it up and helped me with those thoughts/worries. Like I said, I wasn't planning on becoming a mom but with the possibility that definitely is not in the cards, it makes me sad. But we will cross the bridge when we get to it.

337 Days

That's how long my runstreak was. I had to stop. I asked him if I could continue until the surgery and he said "Well, maybe if you go really, really, I have to say no. If it bursts, you will be in a lot of pain and it will be an emergency situation. It's better to stop now and call it". I said okay. And then asked him if walking was okay and he said yes. So at least I have that.

Sadly, it looks like my plans for fall racing are out the window. No Long Beach Marathon (which means I won't get to finish the Beach Cities Challenge either). No R&R LA (and did you see how cool that medal is?). No Flying Monkey (sob). But on the plus side, I should be on my way back to run Tinkerbell in January and, if I don't go too in debt with PTO and money, hopefully Princess in February.

I know that my health is more important than running and that I will feel much better after. I just am sad that some of the fun I'd planned this fall won't be happening. And I'm having race bling withdrawals!

But seriously, I want to thank all of you for your thoughts and prayers and offers of help. The best part of running is the community I found and I am thankful for all of you.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

It's Not Serious

I think. But it feels like it to me.

So this is what happened since I last blogged...

I had an ultrasound on Sunday, Aug 18th and then had to wait until that Friday to find out the results. The ultrasound wasn’t enough t tell them what was wrong so they scheduled an MRI for me on the 24th and the doctor called me to make sure I didn’t miss it. She said there were multiple masses on in my stomach but they couldn’t see exactly which organs they were in so they could refer me to the proper surgeon. I’d had blood work and a urine test and she said the blood work came back fine but she was worried about the urine test. Oh, and she told me I had gallstones which she said was the least of my worries. Sigh.

The MRI was not fun. I’m not really claustrophobic but I don’t like not being able to move. Plus, it was loud and hot and my back was hurting. It took over an hour. I ALMOST pushed the panic button a couple of times. :( So then I had to wait a week to hear the results for that test. I had been hoping it was fibroids in my uterus because that would have been the “easy” fix so I was disappointed it wasn’t that. And I was a little scared.

My grandmother had polycystic disease and the cysts were in her uterus, liver, and kidneys. Her kidneys stopped functioning because of that and she spent the last years of her life on dialysis. I used to take her to her Saturday treatments and saw how much it took out of her. Of all the things the masses could be, I was praying most it wasn’t that.

It wasn’t that. Thank god. It turns out I have multiple masses on/around my ovaries; the largest is the size of a lemon. My doc wouldn’t say “cysts” and she wouldn’t say “not cancer” and she referred me to an ob/gyn to take it from there. I couldn’t get an appointment until Oct 10th. Sigh. But I am going to call back often to see if there were any cancellations.

Even though she wouldn’t say “not cancer”, I’m going with they are “just” ovarian cysts like my mom had. I still don’t know what that will mean surgery wise. I don’t know if they are just going to take the cysts out or if they’ll have to take other things along with it. I’m still hoping it will be like a 2 week recovery period and not 6 to 8 weeks. A girl can dream.

Running wise…I’m not really running anymore. I am still doing my 1 mile streaksavers but that doesn’t feel like the true spirit of a runstreak? Sometimes I want to do more but I just don’t know if I should. Most days it’s uncomfortable to run because of the swelling in my stomach (which also has been causing back pain). It looks like I’m 6+ months pregnant and at times, it feels like a really bad case of PMS. I still have the nausea and sometimes I feel lightheaded. And of course, I’m tired all the time. Some of that is because I can’t get comfortable at night. I can tell that my body is working to fight what’s wrong with it and I don’t want to do too much and tire my body out while it’s doing this. I have been supplementing the not running with walking and doing a lot of spring cleaning. I’ve also been trying to stay away from Twitter and Facebook because while I’m happy for all of you and your running/racing…I’m also jealous!

And sad. I miss running. I miss the endorphins. I miss being out on the trail. I’m nervous to go out by myself right now (because of the lightheadedness) and I’m too slow to go with anyone so I put that on hold. A friend asked me if I would rather be running or alive. I said both!

I thought it was really kind of ironic that I couldn’t get an appointment until Oct 10th…the day after I will reach my 1 year runstreak anniversary. I just hope I can at least get my 1 mile a day in until them. Though some days I don’t care, I know that I will be pissed at myself if I give up. And a part of me hopes that I will miraculously get better every day.

A runner girl can dream.