|This soap opera ran from 1951 to 1982 on CBS.|
Thirty-plus years later, when I think of my days with Grandma McCracken, I think of buttered rice, cake batter (no beaters for me, she gave me my own small bowl of batter), and soap operas. Some days, we spent running errands in a twenty-mile radius, lunching at coffee shoppes (she with her coffee and me with my hot tea), or visiting with her friends, but generally we were always back home in time for the "Soaps". Right after the "Mid-day Report" on WCTV, the stories began. I remember watching Search for Tomorrow, Young and the Restless, As The World Turns and Guiding Light. Referring back to my old soap opera watching days with Grandma McCracken, I think a fitting title for this episode of my life would be "Search for Tomorrow"!
Tomorrow is my doctor's appointment with Dr. Martin. It's the biggie! The appointment where I find out the official results of my tests, hear my treatment plan, ask my questions, and schedule my surgery. Jeff is finishing up training out of town, so Mom and Dad are going to the appointment, also. (I think it will also give them peace in meeting the man who will operate on their "baby".)
I've been researching, emailing other breast cancer survivors, and reading to compile my list of questions for tomorrow's appointment. This is what I've come up with. (If you can think of others, please email them to me!)
Shelby's Questions (AKA "Search for Tomorrow")
- Cancer Type: Invasive Ductal
- Location: Right Breast
- Tumor Size: 2 to 3 cm
- Grade: 2 (medium growth)
- Stage: ??? (I'm guessing possibly Stage IIA, based upon my research)
- Hormone Receptors: Estrogen 100% +, Progesterone 90% +
- HER 2 Status?
- HERS2 Status based upon what tests?
- Lymph Node Status? (So far, he has said none, but I want to be certain.)
- Second opinion for Insurance status?
- Length of surgery?
- Reconstruction at same time of mastectomy?
- Length of Time in Hospital?
- Recovery time?
- Recovery advice? (Drains, I know, but what else?)
- Chemotherapy details?
- What type?
- Begins when?
- What side effects?
- PET scan of entire body when?
- What about my daughters?
Please pray for my strength during tomorrow's appointment. I also pray that my parents and I have a peace about the treatment plan, that all of my questions are answered, and that surgery is scheduled in a way that accommodates all parties involved :)
Tomorrow is as real as it gets, folks! Presumably, when I walk out of Dr. Martin's office Tuesday afternoon, I will have a date and time to have my breasts removed, and my search for answers will be over.
TTFN, (Literally, only for a while longer!)