Tonight will be a long night. After a routine doctor’s appointment on Friday, I was sent for my first post-treatment bone scans, early, to check if this pain in my ribs might be due to metastasis instead of simple misadjustment or weakness from the radiation. I know that metastasis isn’t the end of the world (I have so many friends here who are proving otherwise), but, I have to admit, it still scares the bejeebus out of me. I’m not ready for mets. I’m not ready to go back to chemo, to go into “treasure every moment mode,” to polish up my will and consider end-of-life issues.
I know in my heart that the things I fear could happen any day. That any of us could be hit by a bus (did I ever tell you about the week that I was — twice?), be injured, and need the same Living Will, Advance Directive, Will, and family love letters prepared and stashed away in the drawer. That each day is a gift, and I keep reminding myself of that. But I was still not ready to hear those words: “We need to check for metastasis.”
I’ve had the bone scan now. My little family and I drove up to Frederick for an available machine today (our local centers were closed because of the water restrictions) and I have the printed scan in a folder here beside me. It’s a large printout, x-ray style, of my skeleton, with some bits darker than others, and it’s a guessing game whether those bits are early arthritis (runs in my family), normal darker bits, or metastasis. I’ve put it away now, and made my appointment for tomorrow, when hopefully the results will be ready and I will find out what exactly is in my future — a summer of relaxation, playdates, writing, and BlogHer? Or another hot summer in a cold chemo ward and then tucked away in the back bedroom, resting?
I know in my heart that either answer will be okay. That I will fight to the end for more time with my baby boys. I just really wish it didn’t have to be so soon.
Crossposted at Mothers With Cancer.