Remember how I said we are praying for big things? That there's at least a chance that they are wrong? I have had some people storming the heavens on my behalf. Tuesday, and Wednesday, two different doctors looked at my scans, convinced the cancer has returned. They read my scan as "concerning for neoplasm, possibly metastatic" with multiple lymph nodes lighting up as well. In a young person, who is otherwise healthy, with a history of cancer, there aren't too many other things they think it can be. Wednesday morning I spoke with my oncologist, and it was a very somber conversation. He had spoke to the radiologist, who was pretty sure it is cancer.
Three hours later, he called me back. A testament to his incredibly persistent and caring nature, he had reviewed it with another radiologist. This time, he told me there is at least a chance that it could be a "metabolically active" fungal lung infection. It is possible for me to have been infected without significant symptoms, and what we are seeing on the PET scan could in fact be my body clearing the infection. At this point, I feel like I am on a crazy roller coaster.
Yesterday I saw an infectious disease doctor who agreed that it could be a possibility. In Ohio we live in an endemic (widespread) histoplasmosis area, and I have traveled to other states where there are other types of fungal infections that are prevalent. They are testing me for all of them. She said I will still need a biopsy to be sure it isn't cancer- some of the labs can remain elevated for months to years after an infection, and sometimes they can come back totally negative (meaning normal) even if you still have an active infection. So given my history it's the logical choice to be sure. That's scheduled for next week. We also have backyard chickens, which are known to carry histoplasmosis. Since the coop floor isn't dirt she said it's less likely for the fungus to grow there, but it's possible. Possible, is my new favorite word.
These last few days have been incredibly trying on our family, but it has made me more certain than ever that I am surrounded by so very many incredible people. People that have been willing to ride this roller coaster right along with us, and let me tell you, that makes it so much easier to bear. I'm not worried about me, strangely, I mostly hate this for my kids, and my sweet husband, and my dearest friends who feel the same sadness and fear that this has allowed into our lives. I hate that cancer has even entered our lives and causes this kind of turmoil. It's our reality, and I feel so terrible that anyone has to experience this other than me.
But, if I didn't let people into this, if I didn't have people journeying along with me, then they too would miss out on seeing what God can do. They too would miss out on witnessing either the miracle we are praying for, or the joy and hope we get to have in the middle of the sorrow because of our faith in Christ. And I wouldn't have people bearing witness to the power of prayer because I have asked them to pray, and I promise you, people are praying.
So we will wait until next week to know for sure. In the meantime, we will celebrate each day with renewed perspective. It is hard to be a patient in the middle, having patience in the middle of the waiting. Thanks for being willing to bear this burden with me.
And if you have any good recipes for Chicken, start sending them my way. Eggs are cheap, and life is precious.