THYROID CANCER AT 46 OUT OF NOWHERE& MISDIAGNOSED..LEARN FROM MY STORY!
i tell my story because i feel that woman are just, way too often, made to feel that there is something psychologically wrong with them when they say they know their bodies and feel something is wrong..my cousin was dying of colon cancer at age 52 last summer after a 5 year battle..i took more time to pay attention to my own body from watching her experience of course..ironically, i found a very swollen little gland on the base of my upper neck near my ear and immed. went to my pcp..she and i are quite close and she sent me for an ultrasound..was told the gland was nothing, but that during that exam, they found a thyroid nodule, quite a large sized one, that no one ever knew about though i go for routine physicals..i was then sent for a biopsy, which came back negative..but i felt in my heart something was wrong..my cousin is a psychologist in boston and urged me, for peace of mind, to leave the small town dr's and head to boston so i could have peace of mind..thank goodness i went..the biopsy was wrong..i had cancer in my thyroid in that nodule and also a more aggressive cancer of the thyroid in the other side in a pin prick of a spot..i had surgery to remove my thyroid after never having had thyroid problems in my life!...
it was extremely difficult for me to hear i had cancer.. felt as though i had had to go on a wild goose chase to prove something was wrong only to be rewarded for my efforts with cancer..what a reward!..i had to have radiation in the form of I131 and then go into isolation at home due to the radiation danger to my family..i fell into deep depression for the first time in my life..but i did it! and i just had my 6 mos scan which is clean..am i free of worry, fear, anger, sadness, or grief?? NO WAY! i think about it daily and cry many a night about my kids and what could be..but i also have hope..and i have taken many lessons from this experience..i live for my cousin who fought, and for all of the many others that fought and still fight..
i allow myself to grieve for the life i knew before cancer...and for the life i have now knowing it was inside of me..i see it as an enemy within sort of thing and i need to do whatever i can to keep it at bay..
mostly, i want others to remember that doctors and biopsies are not 100%..if you feel something is off, you MUST go to a reputable dr from preferably a teaching hospital in a city to get an accurate diagnosis..they have a dr for every organ..that is where you find the best..be your own advocate..get mental health counseling if needed..for me, it helped me to have the strength to remain calm in the face of fear, so i could make better decisions for myself..
and mostly, if you do get a diagnosis, follow winston churchills advise..it helped me on the days i wanted to not get out of bed or go for the treatment..: "DONT GIVE UP..DONT EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER GIVE UP.."