So how does that happen? How do I get diagnosed with secondary cancer in my thymus and right axilla in September and then cancer free in January? Let's review the evidence;
September: CT scan which reveals that thymus gland is enlarged. Could be as a result of chemo but Prof wants to check with a PET scan.
Late September: PET scan which reveals cancer around the thymus and under the right axilla.
October: Needles put into right armpit to try and take out some cancer cells for analysis. No cancer cells found.
December: PET scan reveals that cancer has spread from thymus and right armpit into the neck as well. Doctor reluctant to start treatment based on PET scan as still so new and high rate of false positives so he orders a CT scan for early January. (Thank goodness - I could be having chemo right now otherwise!)
January: CT scan comes back completely, utterly clear. The thymus enlargement in August was clearly just a result of chemo and the PET scans were false positives.
Next check up due in two months. We are going to forget scans and go by feel. After all, knowing it is back doesn't help at all until we have (excuse the pun) something solid to deal with.
So this means that after all that pain and heartbreak, it never actually was secondary. It never metastasized after all. I have been clear all this time and I am currently.
Of course there are the requisite questions going round my head, I mean, after all that means that the CT scan could be a false negative which it could. But second guessing, anger, and distress are, I feel, a waste of time. Yes, I have been through unnecessary grief, yes, I have been to the end of the earth and back, but you know what? I CAN do it. I can look death in the eyes and prepare for it; I can deal with secondary cancer and continue to live my life. I do not blame my doctors at all: it is better to have doctors who look after and out for you than neglectful ones.
I am so damn lucky: I still cannot come to terms with it. I woke up this morning and the first thought was the same as I have had for the past two years: Oh, I have cancer, and then came in the flow of joy, No I don't!
When I was under the illusion that I was under Cancer's shadow, I kept writing about snatching every moment, but I didn't really feel it. Today, I feel it. Today, every shade of green in the garden, every grey in the sky, every smile on my daughters, every monotonous household task has a joy all of its very own.
I am back to being ordinary and I love it.