In the middle of my second fertility doctor visit I started feeling excited about making little frozen embryos. My imagination gushed with images of the pre-baby cells happily chilling out together, waiting for me to get well. Then a thought hit me, “I haven’t been taking prenatal vitamins” I gasped. The doctor smiled and looked over my bloodwork. “You’re great, your folate is good, B12 is good…” I breathed a sigh of maternal relief.
During the pelvic ultrasound to see how many potential eggs I have, the doctor patiently and sweetly explained the dark moving blobs on the screen. I could not understand how she could see anything but nodded as if I did. I wanted to hear how many eggs I had. I didn’t want to understand those blobs until the day when I have a ultrasound to see a little babies heartbeat inside me. She told me that I had 3 eggs in my right ovary, some fibroids and a small simple cyst. Then she went over to the left. “Seven” she exclaimed with a smile that faded all too quickly. She had discovered my left complex cyst. She measured it and it had grown. She said she was sorry but it was so odd looking she had to refer me to an oncologist. “I can’t get your eggs with that in the way”.
I left with my head swimming. I have to start the hormones for egg retrieval on my period and it starts soon. If I miss it, it will be a whole other month before I can start my cancer treatment. With the Independence Day holiday I only had a four day week to get into see another oncologist and possibly have it removed.
My awesome nurse practitioner pulled strings to get me an appointment with a GYN oncologist at 7:30am this morning. Here are some of things I learned from the visit
1. Getting the BRCA test might be a good idea. It is really hard to screen for ovarian cancer and it is more dangerous, so if I test positive it might be advantageous to take it out.
2. They can take out the ovaries and leave my uterus-so I can still carry a baby. Yay!
3. It is strange to discuss ovary removal before 8am.
4. They have no idea what my cyst is. It is possibly filled with poisonous liquid so even if I didn’t need it out to get the eggs I may have needed to take this out anyway.
5. If it is cancerous, they will immediately take out my ovaries. This will mean no frozen babies for me, so fingers crossed.
6. It is odd and weirdly comforting to have one of your best friends in the room during a girlie examination.
7. They remove ovarian cysts laproscopically through the stomach. It is done under general anesthesia.
8. My surgery is this Friday.
I have no time for a second opinion, I have to trust this man I have never met before. It is scary and overwhelming even though I can see the positives ie: probably not cancer, they are getting it out before it can burst, laproscopic is so much better than cutting my whole stomach open. However just thinking about possible negative outcomes makes me sleepy and hazy.
Then I get a call that my breast oncologist can fit me in today. I go alone since I didn’t have time to call anyone. My brain was not on full alert but below are some things I learned
1. The breast cancer is not accelerated or aggressive:)
2. My oncologist likes soduku
3. He thinks it is not a bad idea to go through the fertility treatment even though it may cause a spike in hormones and potentially some growth. It will be zapped 2 days after the eggs are harvested by chemo.
4. He showed me charts that said my chances of recovering and not getting cancer again are pretty good. (Not including if I am BRCA postitive)
5. Chemotherapy -is the German word for medicine
6. With the new chemo I will definitely loose my hair.
7. You can not breast feed from a breast that has been radiated.
8. He is open to eating vegan cheeses.
Lastly, here is The Plan at least til I get a second opinion
i. I have surgery to remove the cyst this Friday
ii. Early next week I begin hormones
iii. 2-3 weeks Later they remove my eggs
iv. 2-3 days later I start chemo (T/C Taxotered Cytoxan)
v. Chemo for 9 weeks
vi. Lumpectomy to remove lump
vii.Chemo for 9 weeks
ix. Tamoxifen (5 years?)
x. Doing fantastically (forever:)
I am off to go eat, since I will not be allowed anything but clear liquid tomorrow. I feel sorry for whoever is around me then. There is a fine line between me and not so nice me and that line includes toast! So sorry to my friends in advance.