So after a week of seeing doctors, getting tests done, and setting up the biopsy came the weekend. A few select friends knew about the biopsy but I didn’t want to let many people know, after all it, there was still a possibility that it was “something else” so it was not worth getting more people anxious about it. Besides, talking about it made me more anxious so it was better to just wait. We had dinner Saturday night at our friends house and they also had invited another family that had gone on the ski trip with us. Only my friend Tish knew of the upcoming biopsy. We all reminisced about the wonderful trip we had and how everyone had such a great time. Then everyone starting planning their next ski trip and I just sat there smiling, quietly. Instead of the Jamaica trip, we had originally planned a sailing trip to the British Virgin Islands this past summer but for many different reasons, we had to postpone the trip. We got into a discussion later that evening about how nice it would be to go on a sailing trip, and then everyone talked about when and where it would be best to go. Again I just sat there smiling quietly when I just wanted to yell “I MAY HAVE CANCER, I CAN’T PLAN ANY GODDAMN TRIPS” but I just kept on smiling. I tried to be as bubbly as I could be and tried to enjoy the rest of the evening. Sunday morning, I went paddleboarding with my SUP buddies Tish and Louise. It was a beautiful morning, the river was calm and the weather not too hot. We talked about everything but the upcoming biopsy, pretending that nothing was wrong but when I had to sit down to paddle because I felt I could not keep up I knew something was off. I made a joke saying that I was not “standup paddleboarding” but rather “sitdown paddleboarding” – we laughed it off and just moved on.
The biopsy itself went well and I went back to work the next day after Fred and I dropped the kids off at school for their first day back to school. I was starting to be a little distracted when listening to my patients but in turn they provided a good distraction for me. This was much better than being home and staring at the walls.
Then came D-Day –
I was at work on Thursday morning, constantly checking my phone to see if I had missed any calls and jumping every time the screen would light up during my sessions. When I was done seeing patients, I mustered all my courage to call the GI office, but of course I was sent to a voicemail and left a message. I was on my way to get the boys from school when the phone rang, caller ID was “blocked” I knew it had to be the doctor. So I answered. “I have the results and it is adenocarcinoma of the liver – it is cancer”
A bomb was just dropped… (remember I am still driving and am thinking WTF? are you really telling me this over the phone? what about our deal???).
I have no idea what else he told me after the dreaded words but I remember just saying “uh-huh”, “uh-huh”, “uh-huh” and then finding my calmest voice within me and asking him “do they know what stage it is?” and his answer was “when it is in the liver it is Stage IV”
Another bomb was dropped but this time, it exploded right at the epicenter of my soul, shattering my life in one million little pieces…
I tried frantically to reach Fred, “why isn’t he picking up?” I was asking myself, he knows I’m supposed to be calling him! but I was so frazzled that I was misdialing his number over and over. When I finally reached him, he convinced me to call my friend to pick up the kids from school and said he was on his way. I called my friend crying and she picked up the boys and kept them for a few hours for Fred and I to put ourselves back together, but of course, picking up one million pieces will take longer than a few hours…