I lived in NYC on 9/11. It was a day that was unreal and I learned what it meant to be truly scared. In the weeks after 9/11, we moved to Indiana as planned and then 17years later a move to Massachusetts. It has been 20 years since that day and I thought the fear of it had faded. That was until it brought a new and very unexpected twist to my life. After an incidental finding on a chest xray, and a few tests later, several masses were detected and biopsied to reveal that I have mesothelioma. Mesohthelioma is a very rare cancer of the lungs from asbestos exposure. There is a latency period of many years from exposure to the time of detection. There are only about 3000 cases diagnosed every year, and only about 1 in 100 people exposed will develop this. I am not in a risk category for exposure so this diagnosis came very unexpectedly. The mostly likely root exposure would be on that frightful day.
Since 11/19 when I received this news, I have been trying to process and make sense of this. 9/11 has now brought a whole new fear into my life that I would have never expected. Yesterday, I met with the staff and doctors at the International Mesothelioma Program in Boston. I am grateful that I live close to this world renown facility and will receive the best treatment I could hope for. Tuesday I will have a lymph node biopsy to get a sense if it has spread and stage the cancer. If it has not spread, I will be looking at having lung surgery after the first of the year.
Thank you for all of your love, support, prayers, and good vibes! This is what my family needs most right now. I am sure in the weeks and month ahead there will be things we will need. Asking for help is not something I am used to doing. So please feel free to be pushy and make me give you the blessing of helping me.