I had my first follow up doctor's appointment this afternoon. First time walking in to the office just to "check in " with my doctor since my "no more cancer scan" back in April. No anxiety about getting scan results. No port being accessed. No infusion room. No IV poles. Nothing. Just walk in, tell them I'm doing great, walk out and get on with my day. I've envisioned this doctor's appointment hundreds of times. That is how it was going to be. How it should have been.
I blogged in September about adjustments. I had to change my mind set about a few things. I no longer was going to have long hair and I was told I needed to wait to have children, if I still could have them. The adjustments weren't easy and they still aren't easy, but I'm on the opposite end of all of it now and it is time to get my plans back on track. Ugh. My plans. The two words I should have learned to never, ever, ever use again! But I obviously didn't learn that lesson. I had psyched myself out these past few months. I refused to have the "having babies" conversation with my doctor the last month of chemo and the weeks following my last treatment. I think subconsciously I didn't ask the question because I wasn't ready to hear the answer. Before treatment I was told to wait 3 years before trying to start a family. The reason being, chances of relapse are highest in the two years following remission and scans are done every 3-6 months throughout the first 2 years and of course the first year would be filled with treatments.
There are downfalls to always being optimistic (who knew, right?). I found that out today. Remember when I said I had envisioned today's doctor appointment hundreds of times? This is how I envisioned it...
"Hi Amber! You look great! How do you feel?"
"I feel great! Thanks!"
"I know you are wanting to talk about starting a family. Since you did so well throughout chemo and are back to your normal energy level and seem to be right back where you started, I don't see why you can't wait until after your scan in August and then start trying."
"What great news!! That is perfect! Thanks!"
That is how it should have gone. I had played that conversation over and over in my head so many times. I was optimistic. Overly optimistic. When the conversation didn't go that way, I felt like I had gotten a swift kick to the stomach. Ok, more like a construction worker with steel toed boots, who has thighs the size of tree trucks drop kicked me. The conversation went the same exact way it did before I started treatment. I needed to wait two years after my last chemo treatment and 40 days after my last scan. I could see my doctor felt bad. She had trouble looking at me after she told this. Of course, I smiled and said "Ok that sounds good. We can do that." She asked if it was the worse news I had heard all day. I didn't answer. What I wanted to say was, that's the worst news I've ever heard.
STOP. This is where I get ridiculous. Seriously, Amber? You were diagnosed with cancer. Remember, that conversation? The one where your mortality was questioned? And you mean to tell me that waiting two years to start a family was the worst thing you've ever heard?
Well, it felt like it at the time. Ridiculous or not ridiculous. That's how I felt. I wanted to break down crying as I did my most pitiful walk out to my car and slumped down in the driver's seat. As I sat there and felt bad for myself, I started to think about how silly it all was. Gosh, there are so many worse things that could happen and here I am, complaining about waiting another two years. Two years that Garrett and I can take time for just the two of us. Time to travel, to spend with our families and love on our nieces and nephews and all the other babies in our lives. I seem to get so caught up in this whole "this is my plan" concept that I overlook the things I am most grateful for. I stayed out until 3 am last night and woke up at 10 am this morning (I was helping Garrett with baseball laundry and not out having a good time, but still..). I would have missed out on that time with him if I were home putting a mini Garrett to bed. Unless I plan on leaving my kids in the room with my dog when we go out of town to be taken out two times a day and fed in the morning and evening by our dog sitter- no more last minute trips for us. We aren't really the "planning" type so everything seems to be on a whim - something I'm thinking would no longer be an option after having kids. Things would look a lot different. Not in a bad way and, to be honest, I am soo looking forward to those times, but let me live in the moment. Let me enjoy this time and not long for what's to come. Let me be thankful for where I'm at and be aware of the reason I am here. God put me here. He knows where I'm at because he was here before me.
So, no. The words "wait two years" aren't worse then "you have cancer" (even though I may chalk it up to be). But we've all been in a spot like this before. We have all wanted to have our way and when we don't get it, we pout. We throw a tantrum and act as if our world stopped spinning. We need to suck it up and live in the moment. If waiting two years is the worst thing that will happen to me, praise God. And knowing it's not the worst thing that will come my way, may this be a lesson for me to bypass that tantrum next time and immediately find the good in my circumstance.