I debated with myself for a few days whether or not I wanted to blog about what I'm about to blog about. The last few days I've been feeling quite shitty about what lays in store for me during January. Basically I have a weird chronic disease, that doesn't seem to want to ever go away. In a way, it is just like diabetes, depression, lupus, and a host of other conditions that modern humans may have but can still lead relatively normal lives...as long as they take their medicine. My medicine comes in the form of thyroid hormone pills, which I have taken every day since March of 2005, when I had my thyroid and 52 lymph nodes removed all of which were filled with cells which looked like this:Arranged in the following pattern:When in fact, the thyroid should have looked like this: Unfortunately for me, the little buggers were also in my lungs. Fortunately, the cells can't do much at all if their signal to grow and divide is blocked, which is one of the things thyroid hormone (my pills I take daily) do.
Anyway, this is all to say that ever since 2005, I've had cancer in my body. Although most of it has been killed or removed with 3 surgeries and 4 radiation treatments. There is a blood test that I get every 3 months which is my tumor marker and a good indication of how much disease is left in my body. It has been low, but stable for the past 3 years. The fact that it is still there however warrants hopefully my last radiation treatment...which has been scheduled for the last 6 months for Janurary 7th, less than a month from today.
I generally don't think or talk much about all this. I view it as a part of the natural history of cells, that sometimes, they go awry to no fault of our own...and there's absolutely no 'meaning' to that in my opinion. It is what it is.
My current fear is that, if there are cancer cells in my lungs (which no one is actually certain of anymore), then those cells will concentrate the radioactive iodine I have to drink in January. The problem then, is that normal lung cells get damaged in the process....and people that like to ride bikes quickly, climb mountains, ski down hills, run after frisbees, play with kids, run through the woods, and even scream at cyclocrossers need their lungs.