Tammie True | CaringBridge

Tammie True Tammie

First post: 11/26/2016 Latest post: 4/4/2017
November 10th I nearly put off having a cat scan done but Dr. Myers cajoled me into it. He argued I'd been sick long enough. I was bloated to the point my stomach was crushing into my ribs on the left. The discomfort of yet another gastrointestinal problem I thought part of a larger Lactose and Gluten issue I was having. The bloating was painful and I couldn't keep food in me, I'd been worn out for months, not feeling well.
We went grocery shopping afterwards, came home to Dr Myers calling, he was upset and apologized before saying, "It's bad. I just wasn't expecting this."

Then I heard I have ovarian cancer. Worse on the right but spread to the left. I was fine as I listened, the doctor was so upset I felt bad for him and my husband was standing there staring at me, I had to tell him. Which I did, after I apologized first for having to give such bad news.

I realized this was real, I never doubted the diagnosis, but I remained aloof of it. It was just something else to deal with.

We were at Doctor Miller's office the next day, A wonderful lady that I am assured by every nurse I've met that I am very blessed to have as a doctor. She is bright, funny,  driven, loves her work. She  interviewed us, did an exam, which was quite painful and reveled to my amazement my right leg was very swollen. I never noticed. Afterwards she answered Glenn that the survival rate was 70%, but there was a high re-occurrence rate. That was Friday. Monday I was prepped for surgery and happy to hear the cancer blood markers for the colon and other organs were negative.

I was out before they took me to surgery. Dr. Miller said they drained 2 gallons of fluid, then sifted through my abdomen, looking for cancer. The right ovary was swollen to softball size, but the Fallopian tube were not affected. The left ovary also was cancerous but not as badly. There were some lymphoid affected. Though there was no sign of cancer in the intestines it's standard procedure they removed the fatty lining around the intestines, and also took out the appendix. What could of been a seven hour surgery was only three, all reports were good but tempered by the fact I still had stage 3c cancer.

I have no recall of waking in the tiny private room I'd spend the next week in. Glenn was happy with all he had to report, and I was so grateful Brenda Hensley had come to sit with him. It's only Glenn and I, it's only ever been us, it's how we prefer it. But at a time like that Brenda was an angel I wouldn't of known how to pray for. Worrying about Glenn in all this takes more out of me than anything else.

A long week of constant draining ensued. Every few hours the drain in my stomach filled and usually over filled all over me. And on the second night I was given ibuprofen. Big mistake. I threw up from 1 am to 5 am. Try that one day out of surgery with a six inch plus scar held together with superglue! That was the last pain killer I let be put in me. The IV pumped blood thinners, and countless other things, but no more pain killers.

The throwing up set me back a few days, but I was starving and frustrated with hospital food arriving tasteless, dry and cold. Not to mention I was red flagged for anything with lactose or gluten which was 75% of the menu. The day before I was transferred to the Oncology area for the chemo I hit upon ordering a hamburger (they had gluten free bread) and it arrived hot and moist. I never tasted cheesecake as good.

Sunday Nov 20th the chemo commenced. First they pump anti-nausea IV for 15 minutes, then a steroid for 45 minutes, then bring in a brown IV bag  and hang that and cover with what looks like a brown paper bag. I felt like I was being executed, they explained that was purely to control the temp of the IV.

Half an hour later it was all over and I felt fine. Of course I had enough steroids in me I felt like Superman.

I was released late the next day, given small amounts of nausea medicine and narcotic pain killers, which work very nicely thank you.

Coming home after a week, being outside after a week... it felt alien. Our newest kitty Sylvester was scared of me. He'd only been with us a few months. Porsche, with us 12 years and never away from me more than eight hours before acted angry and upset.  She just seemed to relax to herself yesterday, four days after I came back.

I'm doing great so far. Took the stairs to bed my first night. No hair loss. Very little nausea, very little. I have figured out why the doctor kept saying "small meals, eat twice as many meals, small meals." I ate normal meals and they went away very quickly. Small meals now. Salmon and caramelized veggies tonight.


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