Scan results just came in...
I am stable, with virtually no change from prior scan. This is fantastic news--may I continue to enjoy this kind of news for decades to come.
It is always nerve-wracking waiting for scan results, but this time was worse than usual. About two weeks ago I discovered a new lump in my breast, similar to and in the same location as the most stubborn one I had before. I was hoping it was all in my head, but my nurse practitioner confirmed it and sent me for scans right away, a week and a half ahead of schedule.
I did not share this news with anyone, as I did not want to take the people who love me and suffer along with me on a roller coaster ride of worry and waiting. I figured bad news wouldn't go away, so I could share it when it was confirmed rather than suspected, thereby alleviating some stress for those who I so hate to hurt. As you all know, I am usually quite open so it was nearly as difficult for me to keep my mouth shut about all of this as it was to wait, but I am glad I did. See how much worry I saved you all?
So, when the results came in today with no metabolic activity or masses noted, it was not what I expected at all, and it would be difficult to exaggerate the relief that flowed through me upon hearing the news. I was prepared for all sorts of things--new, nastier chemo, immediate surgery, short life-span, you name it. I had not even considered "stable scan" as one of the likely outcomes, so I am nothing short of delighted.
As for the lump? I don't know for sure what it is, but since it appeared at the same time I came out of my chemically-induced menopause, it is likely hormonal in nature. Perhaps it is scar tissue from the previous mass that will flare up monthly. Perhaps it is necrotic tissue that is settling. Whatever it is, it is not cancer, and I feel as if I have been given a new chance at life all over again.
This scare has been good for me. Over the past few months of good news, I have slowly come to take for granted that I am on a path to being cured. It is never good to feel confident about something like this, and I have been shocked into remembering this. I am back to being supremely grateful for each nine week block of "good scan" and not looking toward anything else. I am more thankful than ever for my faith, and I thank God above all for this good news.
I will always worry that the cancer is returning--I will live in it's shadow forever, no matter how well I am doing. Any pain I have is cause for concern, and any lump or swollen lymph node will be a major drama. But as long as my faith remains strong, I will not be afraid. Concern is quite different than fear, as it is productive. I can watch for early signs, take better care of myself and continue on my medication because I am concerned about my health. But fear, which is pointless, is not part of my plan--and this is a fruit of faith.
Thanks for your continued prayers for my healing. They are obviously working!