Saturday, September 17, 2011

What a difference a year makes...

I've written about "Scanxiety" before. It used to be that from the day of the scan until we got the results, there would be a lot of tension. We'd be hoping for clean scans, and when we got the news (which to this point has always been bad) there would be a lot of sadness, anger and worry. We've also had a few false messages about the implications of the results - such as from her last spinal column CT scans, when we went from an initial communication over the phone  of "untreatable", to "possibly treatable in a couple months with chemotherapy", to "treatable with Tomo therapy radiation".

Given all she has been through and how active the disease is, my attitude, and hers to a certain extent, has changed quite significantly. I fully expect something will be found at each scan, and it would be a surprise (and a nice one at that) if her scans were clean. I also know what to expect treatment-wise, what can be handled now and what can't - as a result of prior experience and research. So, if in her current brain scan they find a few isolated tumors, I know those can be zapped. Yes, it will cause some hair loss and maybe some short term memory issues, but those seem to resolve over time. If they find a lot of tumors, that likely means whole brain radiation (low and slow), which has more implications. But it is still a treatment which can provide some control and buy some time.

So my stress and anxiety level this time around is low. Maybe I am just inured to it all. It's not that I am inured to how Meagan feels and my support for her. It's just that I don't view the results meeting as such a pivotal event with major consequences. It is more like one event in a series of events, all of which are part of this spiral downward. It also reflects my confidence in the technology available to control this for a while.

But we did talk last night about at what point do you say, "enough". We aren't there yet. So Monday will produce whatever it produces and we will act on it. Been there, done that.

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