Saturday, January 19, 2013

How I Found IT

One morning mid-December I went to shave my underarms and when I raised my arm I noticed I had a huge lump in the middle of my left armpit.  I freaked out, ran to the livingroom, showed Mark and immediately called the doctor.  I called the surgeon who had done a biopsy of the breast on the same side in April of 2012.  They made me an appointment...which got all messed-up...which led me to see my gynecologist who said she thought it was just a lymph node and that I was probably coming down with something.  Both Mark and Lucas had been sick so this made sense.  She told me to keep the appointment with the surgeon the following week.

The surgeon acted very different with this visit than he had with the breast stuff earlier in the year.  He wanted me to have imaging done the next off I went for a mammo and ultrasound the next morning.  Had those tests done and they took me in to see the radiologist who was a very cold person who sits in a dark room surrounded by computer screens.  He just sat there and said, "there are two solid masses in the axillary areas.  You could have leukemia, lymphoma or some kind of breast cancer."  I left the building in tears.  I called Mark and told him I couldn't go home and face Lucas right away so I went to my mom's for a little TLC.  A biobsy was scheduled for December 27.

On December 28 the surgeon called me and informed me that the preliminary tests showed some kind of malignant lymphoma, but we would not know details until the following week.  On January 4, 2013 I went in to have the stitches removed from the biopsy and get my results.  Dr. Lewis confirmed that it was indeed Hodgkin's Lymphoma and referred me to see Dr. Dunbar, an oncologist.  We scheduled an appointment for January 7.

Mark and I left that appointment in shock even though we already knew I had cancer.  Hearing it confirmed in person was different than hearing it over the phone as "preliminary results."  It was a long weekend knowing that on Monday I had to see an oncologist, but it still all felt like it was happening to someone else.  It hadn't really sunk in yet.

**An interesting note**  I had been experience crazy, non-stop itching for almost two years.  I had repeatedly scratched myself until I bruised.  I had been to see four different doctors.  I had been told it was anxiety, nerves, scabies and written prescriptions as far back as June, 2011.  Turns out the crazy itching is a symptom of Hodgkin's.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting to read how you found your lump and all the prior events. You would think that SOMEONE along the way would've acquainted the itchiness with hodgkins. Hang in there, and please text, call, email or message me ANYTIME! I hate hearing that you're going through this, but I love hearing how positive and strong willed you're being. Prayers said daily for you, friend.