Monday, May 23, 2005

My neck surgery is scheduled for June week. We have to be there on May 31st because I have pre-op and an appointment with the head and neck surgeon that day in Tampa. I have two surgeons for this surgery. One will be the same one that did my adrenalectomy and he will do the thyroidectomy part of the surgery and then the head and neck surgeon will remove every single lymph node he can find in my neck, any cancerous cells, and scrape...yes SCRAPE everything in my throat to get rid of as much cancer as we can.

The surgery itself will take around 8 hours from start to finish and I found out how they will be cutting me. THAT is the hard part to swallow. They will be cutting me about a finger breadths length above my collarbone from one side of my neck to the other. It's the only choice. So no small little scar that you won't see for me. I guess it's better than the great big upside down "T" that they use to do.

I'll be honest... I'm sitting here in tears right now. I already feel so self conscious because of my height, flat chest, and recent weight gain. Now people will stare at me and this huge ugly scar on my neck. Lucky me has a major problem with keloids too so it won't get better over time. It will ALWAYS be a big red ugly scar. I'm trying to tell myself that it's a small price to pay to be rid of this huge lump in my throat and this cancer from a part of my body but the woman in me can't help but be vain.

Dr BC said I won't be getting out of the hospital any earlier than Sunday. For the first two days I won't be able to lift my head at all and I will be on ALOT of pain meds. He said that the adrenalectomy was a cakewalk compared to this. That is NOT what I wanted to hear. At least he was honest though. He told me that it will feel like someone gave me razor burn on the inside of my throat because they will be scraping every vein, muscle, tendon,...well you get the drift. My arm will of course hurt because they are taking the only parathyroid they will save and reimplanting it into my forearm. I'm going to be all cut up and bruised up.

*sigh* No more modeling with Cindy Crawford for me. I'll have to just cancel that photo shoot in the Bahamas now. Sorry, just trying to make myself laugh. Not working, just had to blow my nose.

Anyway- after the surgery I will be on three meds on top of the two I'm already on. I will be on a Vitamin D pill called Rocalcitrol and calcium pills for about two months until the parathyroid in my forearm kicks in. I will be on the thyroid hormone replacement for the rest of my life obviously. So long term I will be on three meds (unless by some miracle that little piece of my adrenal gland kicks in instead of becoming cancerous AGAIN) and short term I will be on an extra two with calcium possibly being long term as well.

Vin and the kids are going down with me Tuesday and staying until my surgery on Thursday (thanks to Sis's very wonderful grandpa sending money to help out... I love that man he has helped me out sooooo much over the years) and then they will probably come home until Sunday when they will come back for me and I WILL be ready to go home on Sunday! Come hail or high water I'm going home on Sunday.

We'll stay at the same hotel we always stay at because with the cancer patient discount through Moffitt it's the cheapest you can find for a decent place plus part of their discount includes free breakfast coupons and that saves money as well. On Wednesday we will probably put the Aquarium pass Vin's mom bought us to use and also the museum pass as well that way we have something to do and again... it saves money.

I told Vin that once I'm in surgery on Thursday he needs to just take the kids to do stuff and check in later in the day. There is no sense in him and three kids hanging around a hospital waiting room for 8 hours. I won't even know they are there and it's not fair to the kids to have to deal with that. I'm sure going to miss them so much though once they head for home. I always miss Lil Man the most because he's the only one that still depends on me and I'm so use to cuddling with him at night. The oldest two are big enough to understand and talk to me on the phone and know I love them. I hate this crap so much.

After this surgery we will be going after the tumor in my small intestine. The lesions in my liver thus far have proven to be just excessive tissue (fibrosis) so we don't have to touch the liver at all. YAY for that one! But we can't figure out what the small intestine one is so we will have to tackle that little bugger next. Think they will throw in a hysterectomy just for good measure when they go in after the tumor? *smirk* I think I've earned a two for one deal at this point.

That's all I can think of right now and if you read all that then thank you. I appreciate everyone who reads my posts, wears our bracelets, and checks this blog. It means the world to me.

And just so you know... I will be taking my wonderful quilt that some of you lovely ladies made for me and holding onto it for dear life after the surgery. *kiss*


Anonymous said...

Hey Jo.... Its Tamika...I know I've been AWOL for awhile, but I've finally found the link so I came back to check on you (we were without computer for a time and lost all my faves etc)

ANYWAY! I just wanted to send you hugs hugs and more hugs. I can't believe all you guys have been thru in the last few months. are those hugs ((((HUUUGGGSSSS))))

Laurie (warly) said...

Hon, i had no idea all you've been going through. So sorry we've lost contact. Not sure if you've heard of it, but is great support for cancer victims. Love ya dearly