Numb to the good news.
Thursday - 24 January 2013
Lunchtime today we received the results of the CT Scan.
First from the trial doc who seemed happier with the results as figures for the study than for what they meant for me as the patient. "Blah. Blah. You're responding well. Better than many participants after this long on the trial." We ask again about having the tumour removed. She gets in a flap about how this could affect the trial, checks her notes and calming down, says that it wont be a problem. Yeah, her figures will still be good op or no op.
After that from my oncologist. Fabulous guy that he is, fitted us in after the confusion of who would actually be seeing us for the results. Awesome fella who immediately told us it was very good news. The report showed the tumour had shrunk by 50-odd percent. He showed us the pictures on his laptop. The ones from the last CT Scan showing the tumour to be 45mm and another higher up to be 19mm. Then the latest CT Scan showing the tumour to be 25mm and the other to be 9mm. He also showed us on the scan how the tumour was shrinking off the artery.
This is good news. Very good news. I should be happy, ecstatic even. I responded well and quickly to the treatment. The tumour didn't grow. It didn't sit there like a stubborn stone. All the things we had been warned of didn't happen but somehow I'm numb and disconnected from what is happening.
Dad was in tears. He rarely cries but I've seen him cry so much the last few months. This time though it was in happiness and relief. I know just how much this means to him after what he has watched me go through.
Mom was going on about how it could shrink completely and that there might not be another op. Dr Maurel just assures her that the op wont be in the next 2 months.
I sit there. Quietly. Perhaps too quietly. My parents reactions overwhelm me and I almost want to tell them to stop overreacting but I don't because it would hurt them. They need this. Dr Maurel looks at me and I ask some technical details and discuss the likelihood of an op in May, telling him my instinct is saying it will happen then. He just nods and reassures my mother, who has butted in to stop me asking questions, that we'll until after the next CT Scan to make any decision. I'm numb. I've been through so much to get to this point and I'm going to go through so much more.
My parents look at me now, shocked that I'm not whooping and crying with happiness. They are upset with me for not being happier. Mom tells me I should be happy and pretty much orders me to show it. I fake it for their benefit as I can see Dr Maurel understands why I'm just sitting there. I'm the one who on the treatment, not them. I'm the one pushing through the side-effects, not them. I'm the one who has cancer, not them.
We go home and mom's on the phone to everyone telling them the good news. I hide in my flat but soon have to talk to everyone in the block whom mom has told the news to who want to now chat to me. I don't want to talk to anyone. I understands why she does it. She wants to share her happiness and relief. I just want to be left alone to poke at my website and watch The X-files, and process what this means for me, to me.
At dinner, mom again tells me I'm not happy enough about the news. I try to get them to be realistic but they are still too much in the "it can shrink to the point where there wont be another op" stage. I leave before it becomes a fight. They need there happiness, I need my space.
I poke at my website loving the new responsive Skeleton framework. I've got the whole site in a staging area on my desktop so I can test the upgrade and update and play with things until I'm happy that the upgrade will be smooth and not break things horribly. The theme is awesome, I just need to "dress it up" with the right colours and pictures.
I post the news on Facebook and Twitter and Google+ and the world lights up with celebratory fireworks as friends and friends of friends like, comment, +1 and reply to my posts. I'm still numb.
I watch The X-files until I'm passing out on the couch and then head to bed where I battle to sleep. Strangely all I want to do is cry.