Three months into my cancer diagnosis, I’m looking out the window watching the snowflakes ebb and flow in the fall air. The Minnesota weather is chilly, the wind blustery in the trees, squirrels scurrying about awaiting the coming of winter. This gloomy day (not the snow of course, I love snow any time of year) is far from reflective of how I am feeling these days. Life has been good.
At my appointment with my oncologist this week, we received remarkable news. As we reviewed the results of my PET/CT Scan to find a decrease, yes I said decrease, of cancerous activity in my body I was amazed. The news began to slowly, but surely seep into my being… “Grossly decreased size of lymph nodes in the left axilla and left supraclavicular/retroclavicular region…” and, “Decreased areas…within the proximal left humerus, distal clavicle, acromion process, and along the scapular spine ranging from 3.3 in the medial margin of the scapular spine to 4.8 in the humeral head. These sites previously demonstrated (levels) up to 8.2 (corresponding to the humeral head). Significant decrease in (levels) associated with the medial left clavicle with maximal (levels) 2.4, previously 7.5.” Incredible news. As a realist, I imagine that these levels can fluctuate, though I have no intention of dismissing this report as anything other than encouraging.
While I have received no formal, medical treatment for my cancer, I have been diligent in allowing my body the space to heal. Yoga, meditation, healthy eating, reducing stress, and allowing others to cheer and support my journey. I believe in prayer, my own (which takes on many different forms) and those of others who have taken up the battle alongside me.
“Keep doing what you’re doing,” a good friend commented. I believe that this sentiment holds much merit. It is tempting when things are going well to become less aggressive in the battle, but now is not the time for apathy. It is the time to do good; to research new developments in treatment, to support others in their cancer diagnoses, and to continue to allow space for my body to heal and become stronger.
In three months, I will return to my oncologist. THREE MONTHS! I am grateful for this reprieve, as we had planned on monthly monitoring and visits for six months. Until then, I will continue my ritual of eating red grapes and drinking green tea daily.
Life is good.