Saturday, April 30, 2011

My roller coaster emotions

I had a quiet Easter weekend ... Friday was the 7 month mark.  It often feels like everyone has just forgotten that Vern ever existed.  I know that's probably not true, but since I hear from no one it sure feels that way.  So I wrapped myself up in my sorrows and just let the weight of it all consume me.  Just have to do that sometimes. Monday it was back to a busy work week and I figured all would be well there, as usual. Time for my 'happy face'.

Haven't been to a doctor since we got Vern's cancer diagnosis (well, actually I can't use that as an excuse since it's really been more like 7 years since my last visit).  So I decided it was time to have a full physical so I'd know what I need to address before I head off into retirement. I've had the pap, a chest xray, the labs and mammogram; will have my first colonoscopy on May 20 and then a final visit for all of the results on May 27.  Had to meet with the gastro doc before he'd schedule the colonoscopy. I don't have any big issues, so he said I was his easiest appointment that day... although his next words were "You know you need to lose weight." Umm - ok, yes, I do - but I didn't expect this chubby little gastro doc to tell me that (oh dear, that was a rather snarky comment, wasn't it?). I actually found myself chuckling about his comment on my way back to work. I'm glad I'll be under anesthesia when he sees the rest of me during the colonoscopy!  Actually, I had already started trying to lose some weight. Went back to the nutritionist who helped me lose 35 pounds back in 2003. Lost 7.5 the first week, 2.5 the second and 1.5 the third ... but the news in the next paragraph caused me to jump back into some of my bad habits.

I had just gotten back to the office when my cell phone rang. It was the doctor's office that is doing the physical. They see something in the mammogram and want to do an ultrasound and a spot mammogram ... and they also see something in the chest xray and need to do a CTscan.  Ohhh ... really didn't expect to hear that.  This news brought back memories of when Vern would receive bad news and I was there to support and encourage him. But he's not here for me now.  I know that this could be absolutely nothing and they just need to do these tests to rule everything out. But after all we've been through I immediately started thinking of the worse case scenario.  And I'll admit I was rather angry. After all I've experienced during the past 5 years I really thought I had earned a free pass from any of this stuff.  The nurse said they had given the order to Steinberg and requested a quick approval from my insurance company. Now I had to wait for the call to schedule the tests.

I initially felt I would just keep this to myself until I got the test results, but since I couldn't seem to get this out of my head I went ahead and posted something on the widow's web site I'm heavily involved in. Only a couple responded. Ouch. I then mentioned this during my online bereavement support group on Thursday ... very little support there. It hurt. This caused me to do some heavy introspection.  I spend a lot of time online, trying to provide support to others who are grieving. I felt I was making a difference and yet when I needed support it wasn't there. Perhaps I need to back away for awhile.

And then came Friday and today when my friend, Deb, and I attended the Women of Faith conference at the Thomas & Mack Center. What a wonderful, healing gift that was. Laughter, tears, praise, wonderful inspirational speakers, glorious music. It brought me back to reality. The tests will be done on Thursday and worrying about them between now and then will not change a thing. I will wait for the results and then either rejoice or ask God for help in dealing with whatever comes my way.

Note:  During my quiet Easter weekend I spent a lot of time on the internet.  Found the Silent Sunday link and liked the idea, so you'll see a photo each Sunday without any comments. We're supposed to pick a photo that represents our previous week, if possible. Last week's was a bouquet from Vern's rose garden for Easter that I set alongside the wooden box containing his ashes.


Ginny said...

I wouldn't worry about the mammogram. They saw something on mine, so I had to go back (and plunk down another $25, which I really couldn't spare). Turned out all it was was a shadow. I was told later that a lot of women get called back because they jump at any little thing they think they might be seeing. It's annoying, and painful for we women since they push and squeeze and pinch even more the second time around. Just one of those things women have to go through . . .

Anne said...

Ditto to above re the mammogram, I've had a couple of recalls. Good luck with it all!

I feel a lot like you, that it seems people have forgetten my man ever existed, I find it really hard.

Anonymous said...

This is my first time commenting on your blog, but I have read Vern's story. My husband also has Multiple Myeloma and I am so sorry you are not getting support and encouragement from your friends right now. Like you, I'm a person who tends to keep things to myself as much as possible. Please know that I will be thinking of you and praying for you as you face these difficult days.

jaloysisus said...

Glad to see you are back doing some writing, Dianne. This has certainly been an emotional roller coaster of a week for you, hasn't it? And here I was feeling sorry for myself because my doctor told me I had to quit drinking coffee! You will be in my prayers today and every day. Like the song says, "don't stop believing".

Miss. Him said...

I am so sorry you didn't find the support you needed! If I was on the chat I would have been there for you. You have been so supportive of me during my new life as a widow and I would love to be there for you during your time of fear and concern.

Like others said, women do get called back for mammos all the time. Right now there is no need to worry. Worry won't change anything anyway...we know that all too well.

Please let me be here for you if you need anything.

Hugs to you!

janis said...

Well that just stinks!
Im mad that you are not getting support... I have not had to deal with what you have, but with a different situation, I was surprised to get very little support from those I felt would be my strength. But then very pleasantly surprised to receive much from others I wasn't expecting.
I do understand your concern & fear of the "spot or shadowing". Eighteen years ago I had a small benign tumor from my breast. And I am very anxious whenever they see a shadow. I also had cancerous sell gatherings on my cervix and had them "shaved" off repeatedly.
The good news is a simple procedure can eliminate problems.
So glad you had a great time w/ your friend Deb. I have a Deb, that although lives far can always bring my spirits up. Lean on her and those that will support.
I doubt that people have forgotten Vern. I believe that for some it is so difficult to know what to say, they don't say anything. Some fear bringing him up will upset you. Its probably more about that, from what I have read about Vern, what a wonderful Man, Husband, Best Friend, he was, I can't imagine him being forgotten. I think he was fabulous, and I hadn't even met him. His impact on you is evident. Remember he is always there a part of you & who you have become.
Hang in there dear Dianne... Love & Prayers sent your way.
ps.. share a funny story about Vern. I would love to learn more about this wonderful man.

Boo said...

Dianne, sometimes because we give a lot of support, I'm afraid I've found that when we cry out for it ... it doesn't always come. They think we are stronger than we are ... please update us when you can, because now I am worrying next to you!

Sandy said...

Being alone is sometimes VERY hard, and getting news like you did can be upsetting, to say the least. I am intending it is a shadow, and that all your tests are coming back with a good report, and this is for the highest and best good of all concerned... so be it and SO IT IS!!! whooooo! Amen.

As for the issue of losing weight, I highly recommend "A Course in Weight Loss" by Marianne Williamson because she addresses the root cause for being overweight and it is a God-driven solution. You can get it as a Kindle or Nook (I think) and read and do the homework on your computer... I am enjoying it a lot - and losing weight!

If you want to, please let us hear back on your test results... blessings,

Am I Truly A Widow? said...

Hi Dianne! It is odd when suddenly you realize you don't have a ticket to health because you've been through enough. I have felt the same way. Hope you let us all know how you are doing. I had to do through the same thing with my mammogram. Ultra sound, another mammogram more intense. All was well.
You are doing the right thing getting your health checked. You've been through so much. As soon as all is well, then you can worry about the rest.

Sarah said...

Dianne: Haven't been online in several days....and finally got caught up with your blog.

I'm glad you are going to the doctor, for yourself. Since Bob's diagnosis, I've really pushed my appointments aside ....and I know there are some things I need to have checked.

Sometimes, our best support comes from online friends. People who are in the same place that we are. People who have not walked in our shoes, have no idea what we're experiencing....and I haven't been where you are.

Where you are, scares me to death. I know ....unless there's a miracle awaiting us....I will one day be walking down your path. I try not to think that far ahead!

Please know that we are here for you. We cry for you, and with you. Small consolation when we're just "online friends"....nevertheless friends who support you, your health, and your grief.

Please give an update on the test results.

Blessings and hugs...

Anonymous said...

I'm so hoping that it's nothing serious and not only in case you were a bone marrow match for me! I thought my Auntie Ann would want to fly over and pick it up if you were however she said that she'd fly over and escort you back - she's quite fond of Vegas. Hugs Paula xx

tim's wife said...

I had one of those darn mammo scares in '08. It was just a water cyst but OY the nerves of it all. I'm sure it's nothing. Like you, I bounce back and forth between being disgusted with people and having things happen that restore my faith in mankind once again. Right now, I'm in
the "fed up" phase but wonderful people are out there and they usually pop up just when you need them the most. I try to put myself in the places where I'm most likely to be around warm, caring people. Namely, church activities and support groups. Thinking of you.