Breaking Up Is Never Easy To Do, Especially After 27-Years Together
First I would like to say I’m sorry. I miss you. We had about 27 good years together years I took for granted. I am so sorry you have been caught in up in what has been the worst time in my life. Did you feel my stress when my father was in the hospital several times last summer? When he was life-flighted after a heart attack, were you trying to tell me then and I couldn’t hear you? Or when my grandmother became very ill during her long battle with cancer, were you crying out for attention and I didn’t notice? I thought things couldn’t get worse, but I know now they certainly can and will.
What went wrong? We never had a problem before. Only you know how long it was there growing inside us, but I found it in late 2009. I just wonder how long you were wanting to tell me.
A doctor, during a routine physical for a new job, informed me you felt enlarged on the left side and to see my family doctor to follow up. Having had some symptoms like constipation, a tingling tongue, bad menstruals, and feeling oh so tired, all of which I had chalked up to stress, I finally heard your scream for help and went to see my doctor. While waiting for the appointment I did some research online and decided you must be hypothyroid;.the doctor will give us a pill and send us on our way. Well NO that’s not what happened. The doctor took some blood without even feeling you, and after a week I heard nothing. I decided to call and was told by the secretary that my blood work was fine and it was not my thyroid. WHAT?! You must have been so frustrated that the doctor didn’t help us. She didn’t even try to feel you that day;.but I did. Everyday I felt the large lump in my throat, and I knew it was not good. So I got you a new doctor. I was trying to help you dear friend but it was already too late. This new doctor did help us, he ordered an ultrasound, and that was my first glimpse of you, and cancer. It’s never good news when the doctors’ office calls the morning after a test and wants to see you in person. A biopsy must have been so uncomfortable for you. I’m sorry once again;. I never imagined I would be left without you.
Another morning phone call after Thanksgiving to see the doctor in person and I knew we were in trouble. I sat in that plastic chair looking at my mother and feeling shock and disbelief. At least I’m not crazy I said, almost relieved there really was something physically wrong and not mentally. Can you imagine? UGH! “We think it is cancer, but cannot be sure until it is removed…
First surgery was December 29, 2009. It was the beginning of the end for you and I. The next day I got the news. “It is indeed follicular carcinoma, and we have already scheduled your next surgery to remove the rest of the thyroid. I began to cry. The surgeon told me not to be upset because this is the best cancer to have. At that moment I was in too much anguish, attached to an IV and too many wires to throw my puke bucket at him, but thinking back I wish I would have. Happy F***ing New Years! January 4, 2010, was the second surgery to remove the rest of you. Goodbye.
Thyroid, you did the best you could considering the circumstances. Cancer is nasty and relentless, and it pains me to say you didn’t have a chance. I know it was hard for you to leave me. The nuclear medicine doctor, who gave me RAI, said he couldn’t give me a larger dose since there was a more than usual amount of thyroid tissue left. He feared damaging my salivary glands and taste buds, but I feared remaining cancer cells. Cancer, Cancer, CANCER!
As I said before, don’t think things cannot get worse. As if a cruel joke of fate, my grandmother passed away before I completed treatment for thyroid cancer. Without you, thyroid, and no replacement hormones yet, you can only imagine how emotional I have become. But she fought cancer for over 20 years and defied all the odds given by doctors. Watching her taught me how to fight and how powerful determination can be. I will continue my fight in her memory. It may have been some really bad timing, but as you and I know cancer doesn’t care.
I wish I could go back in time and save you. But I can’t. It’s far too late, and you’re gone. The grieving process is difficult. My whole body is out of whack, and it’s having a hard time without you. So far, this hormone replacement isn’t replacing you, and I fear it never will. How can you ever forgive me?, I miss you when I wake up early every morning to take that pill. I miss you while I am waiting an hour to eat so the pill can be absorbed. I miss you when I look at the nasty scar on my neck. I miss you when my knees feel so stiff I could swear they were the knees of an eighty year old. I miss you when my stupid organic deodorant doesn’t cover up my body odor. I miss you when I can’t remember what the heck I was just doing. I miss you when I don’t have the damn energy for what I need to do, or for that matter what I want to do. I miss you when I must make more doctor’s appointments. I miss you when I am crying and no one but you understands how this has changed me.
My mind runs all day and night trying to decide what it might have been. What caused this cancer, and how do I avoid it in the future? Something in my diet? Something I used on my hair? I will never know what something it was, but my mind won’t stop trying to figure this out. Or maybe I have some defective genes. Maybe my family is just damned cursed. I don’t know but I desperately want to figure out how a healthy young mother can be blindsided by cancer, and left changed forever.
Now thyroid, although this letter has been very emotional for me to write, do not feel bad for me. It is not our fault that cancer has reared its ugly head into our lives. But since it did, it meant we had to sacrifice. I am so sorry it had to be you, but my family needs me, and I am staying here until I am old and gray. I will learn to adjust with out you thyroid, I figure if I can get through this I can do anything. I am thankful for the years we spent together. Know you are not forgotten and I will live my life to the fullest because I am determined to make this awful time turn into something positive.