07 August 2013

The Mystery of Calcification

gray wolf sleeping in snow"A late diagnosis can result in more serious, long-term consequences." -- Olympia Snowe
Time for my annual pilgrimage to Houston to see my beloved Dr. Ross, the man who saved my life.  I won't be seeing the beloved Dr. Kronowitz, although I wish I were.  I learned about a month ago that he lost his wife to breast cancer this year.  They have a young daughter and a tiny daughter, born a couple of years ago.  Every time i think of it, I'm heartsick.
On my last trip, the breast made of my stomach tissue was fine.  The other breast, though healthy, had changed since my last visit.  Just some minor calcification.  That word has become terrifying to me.  On Friday, I'm having a cardiolite test.  A couple of weeks ago, my cardiologist ordered a CT scan of my heart.  Because they found calcification, I will now have yet another test.  This time, they're inject radio isotopes into my veins and watch it travel into my heart to determine whether I'm getting enough blood there.  Excellent.  More radiation.  Any day now, I'll no doubt find that I'm growing another arm out of my butt or some other equally inconvenient place.  Of course, there's also the old glowing in the dark joke.  
I'm not afraid of my heart.  I'm terrified about my breast.  My position remains that I won't endure another round of chemo.  I can't.  So what does that leave me with if something goes wrong?  I wonder which would be more painful--the chemo or dying.  I know chemo and I know what horrors lay in store for me.  Dying?  Not afraid.  I'd just rather not leave my loved ones alone.  But chemo...I don't see it.
Given all of this, I'm stuck once again (just as I am every year) enduring small bouts of terror.  Next week is a long time to venture small forays into panic.  But there you have it.  Excuse me now, while I have a flashback.