If you missed this post last week, I’ll catch you up. My wife was recently diagnosed with cancer. It’s her second time. The last was twelve years ago, so we thought that we were free to live out the rest of our lives without worry. We we’re wrong. I’m going to sort of journal our experience weekly but am not sharing this to any other social media, so please don’t either. Last week on my birthday I got to take her to an abdominal PET scan and a bone scan. Ok, you’re all caught up.
Three weeks ago she had discovered a lump in her chest wall in the front. A surgeon initially took a fluid sample from the lump and sent it for testing. We were relieved to hear that there were no cancer cells in the fluid. Just to be on the safe side the surgeon was going to remove the lump. My wife, being a medical professional, was smart enough to also request a PET scan of her entire chest. The lump was removed on a Friday. We received a phone call on Saturday morning as we loaded our car with groceries we had bought for a Christmas party we were going to host. The biopsy of the removed lump showed cancer and on the PET scan they saw a cancerous lesion on her spine. I took a cart full of groceries back into the store and returned them. We weren’t in the mood for a party.
My immediate thought, although I didn’t say it out loud to her, was that if a lump in the front of her chest was cancerous and there was cancer on her spine, then everything in between must be filled with cancer. It was a terrifying, horrifying thought. And it was a thought I was still having on my birthday, two days before Christmas as I waited while she had two more scans.
We hadn’t told our three boys yet. We wanted them to have a normal Christmas before they started worrying about their mom. Then, on Christmas Eve, we got some good news. She was at work she got a phone call. The scans showed no other cancer. She wasn’t filled with cancer. She just had it in two spots! We were relieved and enjoyed a nice Christmas with our boys.
Things are all relative though when it comes to cancer. There’s never a good amount of cancer to have, but we think she has less than we feared. We’ll know more later today after the appointment with the oncologist to review the test results and lay out the treatment plan. We are walking on optimistic eggshells at the moment. So, in response to the title question, what’s an optimistic eggshell? Right now, I am and I’m hoping I don’t hear anything today that makes me crack.