Saturday, April 11, 2009

NIH Day

My scans came back clean - I am good to go! My next visit is in August and that's the official 2-year mark as far as the doctors are concerned. That's when I finished chemo. 

I managed to stun both doctors I saw. During my assessment, they asked me how I was feeling or if I had had any problems. I answered with "Great! I ran the Cherry Blossom 5K on Sunday and came in 5th in my age group." Their shocked looks made me giggle. Not that I should be bragging because I'm sure there are other cancer survivors who have achieved at least what I have and more (Meg in Austin who survived a much-worse treatment and did the Cap-Tex Triathlon with Mike is someone more amazing than me). Nonetheless, it's pretty cool to make your doctors sit up and take notice that you've not only survived the worst, but that you're back out there and stronger than ever. I am Cancer Survivor Chick and I am STRONG!

My day at NIH was long: filled with waiting and waiting and more waiting. When we arrived at phlebotomy at 10am, workers were patching the ceiling with plastic and duct tape and all the chairs had been moved out of the way because a pipe had burst earlier that morning. Parul, "my" phlebotomist, said this happens all the time. I love NIH, but they need to fix up that part of the building - the main part is all shiny and new but the back part where phlebotomy and the nuclear medicine area are need a serious face-lift. It kind of looks like the DMV back there and my DMV looks better.

While waiting 3 hours for my CT (and starving), we met an interesting couple from Delaware. The husband was probably only 50-something but he looked a lot older. He kept going outside for a smoke break while his wife waited for her CT to check on her melanoma. They talked about deer hunting and whether Montgomery County allows buckshot or only bow hunting (I think it's bow hunting, but what do I know?) His wife made a comment that she only had 6 of her own teeth left because the rest had been pulled out. The husband said he didn't have any teeth. Apparently, he needed one tooth pulled but because it cost the same to pull all of his teeth as one tooth, he had the dentist yank him all out. Wow. He seemed quite proud of himself.

After my CT (at 2pm), Mike fetched me a sandwich and we waited to see the doctors. The slightly greasy ham & cheese sandwich with potato chips might have been my downfall because my tummy did not like it at all. I was sick on the way out of NIH and again when we got home. I took a long nap and felt better when I woke up, but it was not a pleasant afternoon. I didn't eat a lot for dinner. I always have some sort of reaction from the barium and contrast dye, but not this bad. I'm going to have to bring my own sandwich next time and hold the grease. No potato chips either. When am I going to learn?

3 comments:

ThatBlairGuy said...

>> My scans came back clean - I am good to go!

Yaaaaaaay!!! That makes two years of you kicking cancer's sorry butt.

Jeff said...

Great news!

Interesting folks you were hangin with.

Our Family said...

Best news ever! Congratulations and keep the great news coming.