Well... here's the gist of it. Went to Doctor's care on Tuesday Dec. 18th because I thought I had a cold that wasn't going away... runny nose and wheezy cough. Doc took an X-ray and showed me. There was a huge ball on the left side of my chest. I was a little scared... but I though he was going to say I had pneumonia. Well...that was not the case. He started the whirlwind of what will be hospital visits, doctors, treatments, medicine, and all kinds of new and exciting stuff like that.
He sent me straight to the radiologist, where I was pushed to the front of the line and got right in. They took the CT and I went back to Doctor's care with the pictures in hand. The truth of the matter... I have a 14x11x10 cm mass in my chest. Which has now, after a mass biospy and bone marrow biopsy, been diagnosed as non-hodgkins mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma. Because of it's size, I had to start treatment immediately, meaning today. So four days after going in for a cold... I started an intentsive chemo regimen which consists of a serious of drugs, R-CHOP of which I will have 6 cycles over a 4 month period. Not to mention all the meds I have to take to negate the side effects of the chemo drugs.Then a month of radiation to my chest.
I will be weak, lose my hair, be emotionally wrecked and have really bad days. But I am lucky. What I have is VERY treatable. It has an extremely high remission success rate and I have many things going for me. I am young and in good shape. My bloodwork is perfect and all my organs are normal size. If I hadn't gone in for the cold...well... let's focus on the positive. It is pushing into my left lung, beginning to occlude the vena cava, and pressing on the vocal nerve (making my voice sound funny). It will not get any bigger, and should be shrinking as I type.
I will beat this. I will have more good days the bad. I will need the support and love of friends and family. I will learn life lessons from this, albeit the hard way, and I will pass them on. I will NO longer sweat the small stuff and I will treasure every moment. I will be a survivor, there is not ONE doubt in my mind.Will it be hard, of course. Will I cry, of course. But when I look back on my life from a ripe old age, I will just remember this short 6 months as one dark spot on a long lifeline of happiness and joy. Love, Virginia
NED as of May 2008 and living/loving life!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!