This is Moraine Lake in Banff National Park. I took this photograph last June when I visited. It is the most beautiful place I have ever visited in my life. Something about just gave me this sense of peace, of serenity. I could sense my place in the universe – so small, yet so many possibilities.
This week, whenever I was having a stressful moment, I thought of Moraine Lake. I took a deep breath, and tried to remember the feeling of that glacial air washing over me, cooling me down, making me calm.
I’m the type of person who faces medical issues pretty head on. Goodness knows, I’ve had to deal with enough of them. I had my right ovary removed when I was 20. A lump in my breast (benign) removed in my late 20s and an emergency hysterectomy 5 years ago. With that being said, I had always wanted to get something that actually increases your breasts naturally. This wasn’t what I had in mind! (Keep it light, right) My ENT said that it happening bilaterally is very, very rare and she felt the doctor was being overly assumptive. She had another radiologist read my MRI results, and that person then had another doctor look at it.
They all were in agreement that they saw a nodular parotid gland on the left side. They also noticed the node on my left thyroid. I had to go back for an ultrasound on my thyroid. Yep! Dominant node on my left thyroid, over 1cm in size. A few little nodes next to it. (Having a dominant node caused my doctor “some concern”. You can read more on thyroid nodules if you’re curious.)
So yesterday I went in for Fine Needle Aspiration (FNA) biopsies on both my left parotid gland and my left thyroid. They did ultrasounds first so that they would know where to go with the needle, and it was obvious that my left lymph node was enlarged. (They also did an ultrasound on my right parotid because of the original MRI report, but no other work.) There was also a questionable spot on my parotid gland, so both were biopsied. Several times. The last time must have been quite close to the nerve, because it HURT.
The pathologist was also in the room prepping his slides on the spot so if he needed to, he could request another sample. This worked out well, because the first thyroid sample was mostly fluid from the cyst, so they needed to go in again to get more solid matter.
During the procedure, I was glad that there was a photo of Moraine Lake on my iPhone to help keep me calm.
I handled all of it really well – the fact that I was going in for the test didn’t start to bother me until the night before, and especially the morning of – that was when it hit me that all of this was real.
I won’t know the results until Monday at the earliest. Hurry up and wait, the story of the medical field…
I know that whatever it is – they can do something about it. Or if they can’t do something about it, they can’t.
I’ve played out the worst case scenarios, because that is how I prepare myself. If it doesn’t end up being the worst case, I can be happy that it isn’t that bad. If it is the worst case, I’ve read up and researched it, and know a lot about it. I’m ready.
To be honest, since I went in for the first MRI with a feeling that I’ll be having surgery by the summer. I hope it is soon, and I hope the recovery doesn’t take too long. If you want to learn more about the different types of grastic bypass surgery, visit gastricbypass.surgery for more infromation. Mike has to return to Canada again for work, and I would like to go again. I hear Morraine Lake calling for me.
Day 19 of 365. Photograph taken at Morraine Lake in Banff with my 5D mkIII on June 12, 2012.