2014 Off to a Great Start!

2014 marks a big year for me. Or, at least, I hoped it would mark a significant milestone. I had my yearly CT scan on January 17, 2014. I had my six month oncology check up on January 21, 2014. The results of my CT scan and blood work were {insert drum roll here}…

NO CANCER!

That means I made it to five years in remission!!!

HUGE!

High Fiving to Health with My Awesome Oncology Team
High Fiving to Health with My Awesome Oncology Team

Except…

There always seems to be a “but” with my health tests anymore.

Dr. Patton, my oncologist, came in and I immediately bombarded him with the question, “Was my scan clear?” because I had been having some issues that made me worry the cancer was back.

He was pleased to report my scan looked great and my blood work was fine, but… (here it comes) he had a shocking question: “Have you ever been diagnosed with congestive heart failure?”

Speaking of hearts, mine fell right about then.

“Pardon me?” I asked.

He went on to explain the CT scan had showed something weird with my heart. Blood backing up into my liver or some such thing.

The trouble was, I’d had a heart attack-like incident on December 14, 2013. I was playing tennis with Wayne and suddenly felt this seizing pain in the left side of my chest. I couldn’t run, I felt like I was either going to pass out or throw up, or both. I feared I was having a heart attack but if it was going to happen, what better place than with my husband on a tennis court? If I didn’t survive, I couldn’t think of any place I’d rather die.

Plus, it was December. No way I was going to the hospital voluntarily. Bad things happen in December, and one already had. (I don’t think I wrote about it here, but on Haunt Jaunts I did. We lost our beloved dog, Murphy, on December 1, 2013…after he suffered a heart attack of all things.)

December is when my mom kicked my dad out of the house, took me to Nutcracker the movie for what I thought was a nice mom-daughter afternoon outing but instead was when she told me I’d be joining the ranks of school friends with divorced parents. And then of course in December 2008, New Year’s Eve to be exact, I officially learned I had cancer.

Nope. I consider December a jinx full of misery. Wasn’t going to add to it if I could avoid it.

But I couldn’t escape the fact something really had happened on December 14, 2013 with my heart now. Dr. Patton said he needed me to go see a cardiologist and have some other tests done.

Crap.

That put a damper on celebrating five yeas in remission.

Although, I consoled myself with the fact that there was some excellent news besides being cancer-free that came out of it: Since I made it to five years I wouldn’t have to endure yearly CT scans anymore. Halleluiah!! I thought cancer helped me lick my needle phobia, which in part it has. I can have my blood drawn without having a reaction and I can get small shots like a flu shot a-okay, but anything where the needle has to be left in my arm in IV-ish form? (I have to get contrast for those CT scans so they give me an IV.)

Fuggedaboutit!

Anyway, so I tried not to stress all week about the cardiologist visit. I knew the tests they’d give me there did not require needles. I could do it! Better they could find what was wrong. (Couldn’t have been that bad. I was still walking, playing tennis, actually feeling better than ever, but…maybe something was really wrong and I just didn’t know it yet.)

So I had a EKG and an echocardiogram and…100% a-okay!

Dr. Humphreys, the cardiologist, was super nice and funny. He told me, “You don’t need me! You have a great looking heart. Super young in fact.”

SHAZAM!

So NOW the five year celebration can start in earnest!

But that wasn’t the only good news to come this January. After 14 years of submitting various things to Woman’s World magazine, I finally got an acceptance! It’s for a little tidbit I submitted to their Circle of Kindness section. It will appear in the March 10, 2014 issue, which goes on sale February 27th.

Rock on!

2014 is off to a freaking awesome start!!

Hope you can say the same.

 

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