Saturday, June 28, 2008

Great news

I had my first colonoscopy as a rectal cancer survivor was yesterday. I had my breakdown in the morning. Practicing for bad news? Maybe - I am not sure. When I arrived for the procedure my blood pressure was 160 over 81....yeah, just a bit high. But by the time I saw my surgeon etc, my blood pressure was way down. I wore my, "What's up your butt?" t-shirt. I got a few looks, but the nurses in GI totally got it and let me wear it into the procedure. The nurse who was prepping me was Canadian. I have a way of knowing these things. smile So, we started talking about that and how it is hard to meet people in Seattle. We talked about her seven month old, how he moves all over the crib, Dr. Brown bottles, etc. I told her not to give up on Seattlites - we are a rare breed but, when the worst comes, loyal beyond comprehension. I told her about all the help I had and how it made all the difference for me and my family. We ended with her saying, "Well, you have had quite enough of all that. It is time for this (the colonoscopy)to be fine and for you and your family to move on." Translation for the Americans, "Well, what a pile of crap - let's get this over with so you can get on with your life!" You may not like it, but you're laughing because it is true! As quickly as I laid down and turned on my side, I was awake, but really groggy, so groggy I was able to pass gas with other people in the room (quite a feat for me). My chart was next to me. I was trying to read it. All I remember was, "Patient took more meds than usual. Everything else fine." What the heck did that mean? The nurse noticed me and asked how I was doing. I said fine, but I was really out of it. She told me that they had to dope me up more than usual. (That Canadian probably gave me the good stuff!) I got dressed and quickly figured out that I was not walking up to the surgeon's office. So, I got a ride. My surgeon wanted to talk to me personally. His Office Administrator had warned me that he would call me to the office - good or bad, so I was prepared. I don't remember a lot of the visit, but my Mom said that he said, "You now have the colon of a 16 year old. I removed two tiny polyps of no consequence. You can't even tell where the tumor was or that you had had radiation. So, I can tell you with certainty, you have nothing up your butt." I managed to get out of chair and I hugged him. I hope it wasn't sloppy like being drunk. My Mom said it fine. We went back down to GI, dropped off the chair, and I walked REALLY slowly to the car. I think I made a crack to Mom about how some people go and get new nose, cheekbones, etc, I went for a new colon, but maybe I dreamt it - who knows. Apparently, I got home, fell asleep, played with the kids, watched CARS, talked to Karissa, and checked email, but all of that is pretty foggy. So, if you send me something yesterday or talked to me on the phone, I may have no memory of it. In the end (yes, I am hilarious), this is very good news. Typically, colon cancer comes back fast and in the same location that it started. So, I have dodged the second most deadly cancer again. I will have a PET scan in the middle of July that will tell me if it has returned anywhere else. It is unlikely, but it was unlikely that I had cancer in the first place. It was unlikely I kept my hair during treatment....see where I am going with this? I take nothing for granted however, I hope for the best because cancer can't take that from me - good or bad. Feeling happy, relieved, and humbled all in the same moment, Ang


leslie kendall said...

Hi Ang - I am so happy and grateful for your good news - God is good! Sooooo - when some of my friends have gone if for new breasts, new nose, eye lifts, etc. - they can't wait to show them off - so if your friends ask you to bend over - beware!
Enjoy this beautiful day!
xo - leslie

Uncle Allan said...

Hi Angie,
Just read your latest posting. Congratultions and keep on rocking. We hope to see you this summer when we come up to Seattle.
You write so well, i think you ought to publish book.
Kat and I send you lots of hugs & kisses.

Anonymous said...

So glad for the wonderful news. Hope you and your family enjoy this beautiful sunshine. Keep up the writing, I love to hear how you are doing.
Love, Vivian

Anonymous said...

The best news ever! So can we make our New York plans already? Tee hee. Love you, and am so thrilled for you & your family. Tu amiga, Laurita

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Great News Ang, now you need a new 'T' shirt: "My Colon Cancer Free, How About U?" Leslie is giving you some good advice, do not be eager to display your recently modified butt however since they do take video of the colonoscopy you might consider reproducing the discs and offer them on 'e' bay. Since it is not salacious it would be a small revenue opportunity. Do things with your kids that they will remember, go to places like Wallace Falls out of Gold Bar or Deception Creek on the Stevens Pass Highway. When Children see their all powerful parents humbled in the presence of Nature they never forget. Congratulations Angie you are doing GREAT!!!
love pat&mag

Anonymous said...

Ang, I forgot to ask if the little windshield wiper on the camera
tickled, did it?
love, curious pat.

Jackie said...

My name is Jackie Bykonen. I am the daughter of Marilee. I have never met you before, but would be honored to in the future. Your journal is so inspiring to read. I commend you for your courage, sense of humor, and willingness to remain positive. It's challenging to train the mind to not think negatively, but you definitly have mastered that process. Thank you for letting me read about your amazing journey.

Unknown said...

Dear Angie, I have been following the recent blogs and am moved to tears by the wonderful news. Like we always said when the cancer came"why us...then why not us...and then for the survival again..why not us...." My two year aniversary for my last chemo is July 11th, funny we can't remember our middle name but we remember some of these dates! So proud of you and how you have taken control of your attitude and life to make this a positive journey. From one cancer sister to another, I love you. Elaine

Anonymous said...

It seems every time I read your blog I shed a tear. These tears are of joy. I pray for you every night and ask that God walk with you and watch over you through your journey. He has certainly done that!!!!!

I now ask God to watch over me, we have the twins for two months! Two six years olds can certainly keep you on your toes. I just pray for the energy to keep up with them. ha ha.


Anonymous said...

Tomorrow I go and get my rear end scoped. Anestheia issues make it cold turkey. Still, nothing compared to what you went through. Congrats. Eugene Arnold