Yesterday Steve and I met with 2 doctors. First we met with my surgeon, Dr. Alder. He did a quick check to make sure the incisions are healing well, which they are. He told me they usually wait 2-3 weeks after surgery to start chemo. I was a little relieved. My incisions are still very tender and my port is very bruised. I am emotionally not ready to start yet. He also went over the sentinel node biopsy results with us. During surgery he had removed a total of 3 nodes and 1 out of 3 showed tumor. He felt that this was great news, he said he was expecting more because of the size of the tumor. I however felt that this was more bad news. What this means is that the cancer has spread outside of the area into the lymph nodes. Once it gets into the lymph nodes it can easily spread to other areas of the body. And this also means that he will have to remove all the nodes in that area. It sounds very painful to me. I was hoping for one less surgery. Radiation will also be a must now that the nodes are involved. We asked what stage he felt it was at, he said stage 2.
We also met with my oncologist, Dr. Gray. He was very nice. He went over all my test results. He said they all look very good. There is just one they are a little concerned about. My CT scan showed a spot on my right lung the size of a grain of sand. He said it is too small to biopsy or to use the PET scan on so there is really no way to tell what it is. I will need to do a follow up CT scan in a few months to see if this area has changed or if it has disappeared. He also said that he felt the cancer was at a stage 3. I'm not sure which doctor to believe, the surgeon or the oncologist. I think I like the sound of stage 2 better.
We then talked about starting treatment. He asked me if I wanted to start tomorrow and I responded with a strong, "NO!" I need a few more days to process all of this and to prepare myself emotionally. I was also a little surprised since the surgeon had told me a least 2 weeks. So treatment will begin next Thursday, February 25. I was also little disappointed at this appointment because he originally told me it would be 4-5 rounds of chemo, it is now 8 rounds every 3 weeks. So the next 24 weeks of my life I will be dealing with chemotherapy. Ugh!! It also means surgery is now pushed back 2 more months. I keep asking myself how I will do all of this. Especially radiation which will be everyday for 6 weeks. I just don't know how I will be able to do all of this with 3 young kids. I just have to take it one day at a time. I know I couldn't do this without the support from my wonderful husband. He is so patient with me. I have many emotional days and he always listens to my rants. He lets me cry on his shoulder. He keeps everything running so smoothly at our home. I am so lucky to have such a wonderful man to love and support me through this trial in my life.