You know the saying "You could get hit by a bus tomorrow." Well that is pretty much how I felt. The phone call actually knocked the wind out of me. I headed back to the family and our big comfy couch. I'm not even sure if I can tell you how that episode of "Covert Affairs" ended. My head was spinning. Gary was trying to figure from my expression what the news had been. We had been hoping and praying for a call saying "It's not breast cancer." I didn't even really know what B Cell Lymphoma was but Dr. Gold also told me that I wouldn't need a surgeon because Lymphoma responds well to drug therapy and I knew what that meant CHEMO.
Thankfully, that night was the Finale of "So You Think You Can Dance" and I'm a huge fan. So big I can tell you that Lauren Sanchez was the first host of SYTYCD. Just a sign that God is always there to help you in times of need. I was needing and SYTYCD was helping. First off, a huge smile when I noticed that Neil Patrick Harris was in the audience. If NPH is in anything, I will watch it. He is a genius. It was nice to lose myself for awhile in the best of the best from the season. It also gave me the opportunity to shed a few tears. Early in the 2nd hour they announced that Robert was 3rd (he was my favorite). So, I decided to surf the web and see what I could find out about B Cell Lymphoma. I ended up at http://www.lls.org/ - the Leukemia and Lymphoma site. Now I was really starting to freak out. Just as the anxiety was really starting to build, the surprise guest appeared - Ellen dancing with Twitch. It was just what I needed. Happy Happy Happy Tears. Thanks to SYTYCD, I was able to go to bed and actually sleep that night.
August 12, 2010 - Norma called first thing in the morning to see if I could come in a little later for my appointment. It worked out well for me because it gave me time to start a three ring binder in which to keep all my research, insurance papers, orders for tests, results, and support numbers. You can take the attorney out of the practice but not out of the person. I knew Dr. Estrellas was wanting me in the office during lunch so that I would be the only patient. I think she was as shocked with the news as I was. I knew she had been praying for me and that really made me feel wonderful. She explained that I would need to see a Hematologist/Oncologist and she wanted that to happen ASAP. Before I even reached home, Norma was on my cell telling me she had an appointment for the next morning at 8am. When I made it home from my appointment, I learned Shelby had made the Varsity volleyball team. I knew it would all work out because the blessings were still coming our way.
August 13, 2010 - Gary and I headed to Genesys Hurley Cancer Center for our meeting with Dr. Black. By this point, I knew a lot about Diffuse B Cell Lymphoma. I had a list of questions and I was prepared. It made me feel much better to feel prepared for this meeting. My first impression is I like Dr. Black. He asked a lot of questions, gauged my knowledge of my diagnosis and moved on from that point. He could tell I was an informed patient and probably could also tell that information made me feel good. He gave me copies of all of my lab work, pathology results and the accepted treatment information for my cancer. He even suggested the http://www.nccn.org/ site. He explained that depending on the stage of my lymphoma I would need anywhere from 4-8 chemo treatments and possibly radiation. In order to determine the Stage of Lymphoma, I was scheduled for a PET Scan and Bone Marrow Biopsy.
At the end of our appointment he gave me a tour of the treatment center and introduced me to the nurses that would be administering the chemotherapy. It reminded me of an Orthodontist office with the doctor in the front and in the back there are recliners and pretty girls.