10 years

It’s hard to believe it has been 10 years but this week it has.
Way back in August of 2002 besides going on our very first cruise and deciding we love it, the end of the summer held some other surprises for us. After a few months and a few doctors, I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer or as they refer to it, Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma. From diagnosis to surgery took a matter of less than a month.
Sept 16, 2002 I had my very first ever surgery. Having to be at the hospital at 6:30 AM was not enjoyable. Can’t really say any of that day was enjoyable. I don’t recall much between walking into the operating room and laying down on the table, and slowly waking up in recovery. I DO however remember very vividly the “gurney pusher”, whom I swear was her first time ever wheeling one of those around, slamming my gurney into at a minimum 3 walls and 1 elevator. Needless to say the combination of coming out of the anesthesia and the wall bashing, I lost what little was floating around inside me. Keep in mind the surgery was on my throat. I had stitches and a drain coming out of the incision, which was pinned to my hospital gown.

Dinner finally arrived, I took one look and nearly lost it again. I couldn’t understand why my plate was covered in what I believe to have been meatloaf and mashed potatoes. Whoever placed that order must have forgot In had just had surgery on my neck. So I did the best thing I knew to do, I called my mom (since the hubby was in class that night) and asked her to bring me a chocolate milkshake for dinner. I knew that would go down easy.

3 weeks after my surgery I was scheduled for an overnight hospital stay in order to have a Radioactive Iodine treatment to be sure no stray pieces of thyroid remained in my neck, or other strange areas of my body. It’s true they claim there could have been a piece in my big toe! After this overnight I had to spend the next week sleeping on the couch and peeing sitting down. The radiation half life was about a week, and it worked it’s way out of my body and could have been in my sweat and other liquids.

I was released the next day, and sent home with an appointment to see an endocrinologist within the next couple days. The first one I saw didn’t sit well with me after the first appointment so I called the office to register my dissatisfaction and made my follow up with a different doctor in the practice. To this day I have been extremely happy with him, aside from the fact I have seen him at least 1-2 times a year for the last 10 years. One day he promises to push off seeing me to once every 3 years. I will believe it when I see it.

It’s been an interesting road these past 10 years.  The first 5 years included multiple medication dosage changes, and a week long follow up process of Dr. visits, hospital visits, radioactive iodine pills, and full body scans. Do I complain about seeing Dr S every year, yeah I do. Am I REALLY upset about it, no I’m not. I know I am getting the follow up and attention I deserve to get. Plus Dr S is pretty handsome so……

So yeah 10 years. Seems so long ago……


6 thoughts on “10 years

  1. I was diagnosed in 1999 with Hashimoto’s Disease, which is an autoimmune disease of the thyroid. At various points I’ve told people it’s like chronic fatigue syndrome with some weight gain thrown in. It’s no fun having out of balance hormones and metabolism.

    We went on our first cruise together in 2002, too. Hawaiian Islands on Norwegian. We’ve been on four more since then. Alaska (2003-Norwegian), Italy (2008-Azmara), UK & Ireland (2009-Princess) and Greece/Turkey (2011-Holland America). I had already been on 3 other cruises with my family before then.

  2. Rob says:

    I had throat cancer a couple of years ago. Much easier than thyroid, that’s for sure. As long as you keep it out of your system, you’ll be well. Funny, I was diagnosed 3 years ago last week. Nice job!

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