Welcome to my blog. Never in a million years did I ever think I would be dealing with cancer at 29 years old. I am newly diagnosed as of August 7th, 2014. So far what I know is that I have Primary mediastinal large B cell lymphoma. I currently have a soft ball size tumor growing in my chest near my left lung and heart. How do I know this? See below to learn the story. I chose to start a blog for a place where family and friends can easily be updated, but also for myself so I can have a place to document my journey going forward and to try and stay open and optimistic, positive, not negative, and to learn to look for the good in life when I might be struggling to find it. This is the beginning of a very new chapter in my life. A series of chapters that I know will change me permanently and forever, physically and spiritually, but only for the better.
I began having severe shoulder pain about two and a half months prior to my diagnosis. I attributed this pain to a minor car accident that I was in a week prior. I went to the doctor. Doctor prescribed me pain pills and physical therapy. After weeks of physical therapy and feeling it wasn’t working. I decided to go back to the doctor on Monday July 28th. That decision changed my life. My doctor ordered an xray of my shoulder and I went home. Shortly after getting home I received a call from my doctor asking me to come back in for a chest xray. They said they saw something in the corner of the X-ray and needed a different view. My doc called me with results that same day to tell me that the Xray confirmed their suspicions. I had a large “mass” on my left lung. I still wasn’t too worried at this point because who knows what a “mass” really is. A CT scan was ordered immediately. I then got a call at 6:30am the next morning from my doctor confirming that I have a soft ball size tumor on my lung and I have to see a lung specialists right away. At this point I was scared. I knew it wasn’t good. For two whole days I had to wait and wonder what this was. Finally, two days later I was able to see the lung specialist who told me that this is NOT lung cancer, but it looks like lymphoma and I was sent over to the thoracic surgeon right then and there. Next thing I know I’m sitting face to face with the doctor who was looking at my scans, and telling me that he is 99% sure that I have lymphoma which is a blood cancer. You would think I would have cried or dropped to my knees but that didn’t happen. It was almost like being in shock. My body just couldn’t feel it. My mind just couldn’t handle the information. Everything was in slow motion and I felt like I was under water. I just could not believe what was happening. Ironically, it was a very calm atmosphere in the room that day. I just had no words, no tears, no feelings really. All of that got suppressed almost INSTANTLY. Then came this adrenaline rush where I just knew I had to step into action and focus. At this point there were only two choices. To be negative and bitter, which won’t help my healing process. Or get it together and keep moving forward. And that is what I did. I did it because I had to. I’m not even sure it was a choice. It just happened. Of course the thought of me dying has crossed my mind on more than one occasion. And yes I have spent countless hours on google searching my diagnosis. But honestly, I haven’t had the time to sit and dwell. Time was moving so fast, but waiting for my appointments would seem like a lifetime! The doctor then ordered a biopsy of the mass. I was put under general anesthesia and the doctor was able to go in through my side under my armpit so I would not have a scar across my chest. The surgery went perfect. He was able to do it in one incision instead of three as originally planned. After surgery I was very much out of it. Very sick from the anesthesia but recovered quickly. A couple very LONG days later I received the phone call that I had been waiting for. The results matched my doctors suspicions and I had cancer (stage 4) at 29 years old. I was then set up for additional testing for Friday August 15. These would be the final tests necessary to determine how far the cancer spread and what treatment will be needed. Refer to my posts (archives at the bottom or side of page) going forward