Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The attack of the 'OMAs!

It’s the attack of the ‘OMAs!!  Ahhhh….they’re coming, lock your windows and doors!

Since the biopsy last week of my angry lymph node on my neck, I’ve been trying not to worry about it because, as I’ve said before:  Worrying will never change the outcome.  The first couple of days were pretty bad.  I wasn’t sleeping, I was terribly worried about it being Melanoma, blah blah blah.  Wednesday and Thursday were just plain crappy on the crap-o-meter.

Then on Friday, I decided to do some research based on Dr. Surgeon‘s suggestion that it ‘might be Lymphoma‘.  Yes, I am a bit of a detective - I may have been one in a past life.  I find that there are two main branches of Lymphoma: Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.  Under the Non-Hodgkin's branch there are a ton of different types.  I’ve read on some websites that there may be as many as 50!  That is not a typo - 50!  Makes me want to kick my leg up like Molly Shannon’s SNL character “Sally O’Malley”.  I’m FIFTY!

Anyways.  During my research I learned that there are quite a few of Non-Hodgkin’s that can involve the skin and have a RASH that looks damn similar to what I have.  People also experience easy bruising, fatigue, fever, more than normal hair loss, itchy skin, headaches and of course a swollen lymph node(s) (among other symptoms).   As of late I am waking pretty much every morning to a new bruise with  no idea where the heck it came from, I’m always tired and almost sore, I always have a low grade fever typically around 99.3 - 99.7, I shed hair like a sick dog and we can’t forget the whole headache debacle.

You’d think that it would have freaked me out, but it didn‘t.  It was almost an ‘ah-ha’ moment.  Ah-ha…that’s what it is!  A weight was lifted.  It was as if I could finally exhale.  I don’t need to search for ‘what-it-is’ anymore.

Need not worry, yesterday I got the call from UCI and spoke to nurse G.  She told me that both tests came back negative for malignancy in Melanoma AND Lymphoma.  Phew!!  It IS great news and I was stoked!  It was a huge relief, but not the one that I am looking for.

The majority of you will not understand this: I feel like something is wrong.  I feel like something is medically wrong and the doctors have missed it.  I’ve felt this way since April and I've never felt like this prior to then.  I’m searching for the reason of why I am feeling this way.  It’s not fun living like this.  Not at all, it sucks, it's incredibly frustrating.  I know what you’re thinking: Just snap the hell out of it!  You’re ’cancer-free’; move on with your life! Yeah, yeah, yeah - it’s a lot easier said than done.  I told the hubs last night that "NO" is not the answer I am looking for.  I am looking for "YES" - 'Yes, this is what is wrong with you' - 'here is the name of the reason you’ve been feeling like an insane person for the last 4 months'.

I know, it sounds crazy, I know.  I can hear myself when I am crying and trying to explain this unusual creepy feeling.   I don’t want cancer and I definitely don't want another type.  I wish that I was never diagnosed with Melanoma because I wouldn’t have all of this crap that has so annoyingly invited itself along for the joyride.  I wouldn’t feel like a mental patient.  But I do have Melanoma…and I sound crazy...and I need to learn how to deal with it.

So, how does said crazy person deal with being…well, crazy?  You cry when you feel like it.  You get stuff off your chest by writing them down if it’s easier than talking.  You try to get out of your head for a mini anti-anxiety vacation - whether it be a bike ride or cooking something yummy.  You sign up with support group(s) online and in person.  I’ve already registered to chat forums online, but I felt like I would still be sort of hiding behind the security of a computer and possibly wouldn‘t open up completely.

With that said, I just registered for my first ‘live’ support group and it’s tomorrow at noon!!  I am really, really excited!  I am really excited in the possibility of finding out that I may not be as crazy as I feel, and that my friends, would feel really freaking amazing.  We'll see how it goes; I think the groups in the evening may be a better play since there might be more people there.  I'm still researching options in the area but at least I took one HUGE step in the right direction :)
I've got to keep this one...


  1. Yay for negative results! Boo for the way you're feeling. I feel like I can relate a bit. When I first moved to SF I fell in to a bad depression. BAD. I should have been out networking to find a salon or meeting people, anything. But I couldn't leave my room (we stayed with my sister in law for four months). I couldn't get out of bed. I cried and cried.
    Everyone said to snap out of it, go outside, find a job... I had to figure it out. I eventually found the right salon for me and it was much easier after that. But yeah, nothing makes you feel more crazy than people telling you you're crazy and to snap out of it. It doesn't help. At all. I'm always here to chat. I keep meaning to respond to your last message, but keep forgetting. -jesy

    1. Thanks, Jes :) My husband always says "Welcome to OCD!" It totally is that way and I wish it wasn't. It's weird because there are days, weeks even, where I am totally fine but then a random thought enters and screws everything up! I am glad I finally decided to do the support group and I really hope it helps :/ Glad you're doing better and I like seeing your pictures from your trip; it looked like an amazing time!

  2. You're not crazy...I think that your concerns are valid. Sometimes you have to go with your gut- if you think something is wrong, keep investigating.
    My melanoma was Stage 1a; I still worry every time I have a weird pain or feeling somewhere...it really is something that messes with the psyche.
    Hang in there and keep trying things. I hope the support group helps.
    Glad I found your blog, I enjoy reading it.

    1. Thank you, Mama Steg :) I really appreciate your message, really. I'm glad that you found my blog, too. Glad to know that I am 'reaching' peeps outside my family. Thank you.

  3. I stumbled across your blog and I felt like I could have written the exact same entries. I was diagnosed with a stage Ib melanoma in March 2012 (.7mm, slight ulceration,mitotic rate <1). I am so grateful to see someone who has the same worries as I do. Seeing your posts make me feel less crazy. Although, my friends/family are amazing, it is really hard to talk to them about how consuming my diagnosis has become. I hope your support group helps you out. Keep writing!

    1. Thank you, Meredith. I really started all of this in hopes to reach people like me that were looking for people like themselves. Of course, every case is different, but the honesty isn't. I will keep on keeping on, you just keep on reading :)