The good, the bad, the bone marrow biopsy (+ the real bad).

The good, the bad. The same.

I got to leave the hospital temporarily to make another appointment somewhere else (had to get discharged for that) before I learn when exactly I'll be readmitted to the hospital to start chemo. I should learn that in the next couple of days.

I make my escape!

 

One positive update: got another call from Dr. V, an Oncology fellow, who says it looks like it's b-cell not t-cell lymphoma. In other words = good news.

BUT.

(There's always a but.) It's not 100%. What does this mean? Same thing it has meant for the last week of torture: we know something, but we're not sure, so here you go, but not really. I had been told it was likely Hodgkins, then it was Non-Hodgkins, and now I'm hearing it might be back to Hodgkins again. So. I'll take this good news with a small smile and a fat grain of salt.

I'm left feeling like I have as many answers as I started with the night I got the cancer call...

Zero. 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 and more 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0...

It seems melodramatic. But as much as I really do feel stronger by the day, it honestly takes a lot of hard work to get over these humps. I have to muster up strength multiple times to remind myself that it will be okay - that once we have a plan - we will be okay. 

Do you ever repeat a word or phrase so much that it starts to sound funny? That's a bit where I am with the "it'll all be okay," but I know in my heart it's not simply a refrain. It's true. This is why it's so, so important to have positive people and energy around you as much as possible. I don't need science, scans or tests to prove that - less stress + a lot of radiance = good. Things, and I mean everything, not just cancer, are out of our control. What we can control are attitudes and perspectives. This is what I'm focused on. For anyone who knows me well, letting go of control is especially hard. It's also absolutely liberating.

Bone marrow biopsy.

So you know how you can tell a law enforcement situation might be getting exceptionally bad/dangerous when more "tools" start coming out? Riot gear with masks, maybe batons, sprays, and even rifles? It gets conspicuous.

Well, Dr. V came by my hospital bed in the morning with a lot of tools and two techs behind him, one who was towing behind her a very large computer machine. She had on the usual gloves, but also this visor thing and a lot of cords around her. My stomach sank. 

I was really straightforward as soon as the crew entered the room. 

"Okay, what can I expect? I'm super squeamish. I'm a wimp when it comes to needles. How long does this last? How many injections? I'm sorry, I know this is annoying. But do people cry? What does it compare to? Does the Lidocaine hurt? Does it hurt more?"

Lol. Yes, I was THAT patient. But they were all quite patient with me. They talked me through and I built up the worst of expectations in my head to try and  mentally ready myself. It hurt, but I had channeled myself elsewhere during the procedure. It was specific and very vague at the same time. I imagined myself along the Embarcadero. I saw beautiful water scenes. Then suddenly I was swimming in the water (which wouldn't be very ideal lol - hypothermia, much?). 

I could feel the doctor shoving the needle in different directions after pulling out what felt like five feet of bone marrow. That's because the next step was trying to get actual bone matter for testing. Ok, I have to stop now. (If you want more details, I think Tim took pictures haha. He is refusing to show me in case I have to undergo something similar again. Good move dude.)

It's just achy and sore, similar to my neck "wound." It's nothing compared to what I think I'll go through during chemo. Since my lymphoma appears quite aggressive and looks like it has spread, my chemo regimen will probably be just as aggressive. I'll need tips on how to look cool with a bald head.

The real bad.

I'm going to be fully transparent about my situation. I might hold off on some details but I feel like really talking about every part of my journey is going to make me feel like I'm more in control of it all. So...the reason I got discharged temporarily today from the hospital was to make a reproductive health appointment. 

It's tough to write, so maybe I'll try blabbing via quick audio to share my thoughts...

Stephanie ChuangComment