I have cancer. There’s a blog entry title I can be 100 percent certain I have never used before!
Went to the hospital yesterday for my follow up appointment and they told me I have follicular cancer. They have booked me in for surgery next week to remove the rest of my thyroid gland. They say I will have to have radioactive iodine treatment too.
It was actually a bit of a shock because I really expected the lump to be benign.
They have told me I won’t be getting the same surgeon I had last time.
My initial reaction was shock I suppose. I agreed to everything they said. Even if I hadn’t been in shock I would probably have agreed because my daughter was with me and I wouldn’t have wanted to cause her distress.
Right now, however, I’ve changed my mind.
I don’t want to upset or worry the people who care about me, especially my kids, but I don’t want to go through this again so soon!
I know my feelings make absolutely no sense to anyone else but I feel like a little girl who is at the mercy of her abusers all over again whenever I have to put myself in the hands of the overworked, understaffed, clinical people who work in hospitals.
I don’t want to put myself back into the hands of a system that allocated a number to me then treated me as if that is all I am.
It took three hours waiting to get five minutes with the doctor and two minutes with the nurse who took blood today. It isn’t the time I had to wait that upsets me so much. It’s the complete lack of respect for me as a human being that is evident in their assumption that it is OK for them to take three hours of my life that way.
They don’t mention it at all. No warning that there will be a wait, no indication of how long the wait might be, no apology for making you wait. The last time I was there for an appointment it was the pre-admission appointment and I spent more than six hours waiting around to see various people and not a single person said a word to acknowledge it was a really shitty experience or that they were sorry to have to put me through it.
They want me to go in for another pre-admission appointment on Wednesday. Another six hours of being nothing more to them than a number in the waiting room.
I know they can’t help being so busy it’s easy to forget they are dealing with real live human beings who might need a tiny speck of compassion and respect. I know I’m probably being unreasonable to get upset about it. I know people probably think I’m making a big deal over nothing but I just don’t want to go through it all again!
I don’t want these people stealing hours and hours and hours of my life making me wait around for them. I don’t want them sticking needles into me with no apology if they screw up and bruise me, taking my blood, poking and prodding and squeezing me with zero concern for any pain they might inflict. I don’t want them restricting my movements with drips and drains and forcing me to fast longer than is needed. I don’t want them subjecting me to paperwork delays or bullying medical staff.
I don’t want to spend the rest of my life depending on thyroid replacement pills. I don’t want to swallow radioactive iodine and spend days locked up in isolation for fear of harming others. I don’t want to endure scans and tests to see if treatment has worked afterwards either.
I don’t have any leave left at work. I took it all to cover the first surgery. I can’t afford a second surgery let alone time off for radioactive iodine treatment.
The hospital put me on a waiting list and made me wait two months for surgery. They knew I might have cancer but they were not in a hurry then so why the big rush now?
The tumour they just removed was “minimally invasive” yet it was 55 x 38 x 28 mm and the lumps in the other side of my thyroid gland are all less than 8 mm.
I know I owe it to my children to let the medical profession try to cure my cancer even if I would prefer to forget about it and leave whatever happens in Gods hands.
I can accept that, for the sake of my children, I have to let them remove the rest of my thyroid gland and give me radioactive iodine treatment but I don’t see why I can’t take six months to heal, recover, clock up some more leave at work and then have the second surgery. It doesn’t make sense to panic now when there was no panic before.
Either treatment will work or it will not. I really don’t believe six months will make things any worse.
I’m going to call them tomorrow and ask if I can postpone.