I was going to post a few weeks ago saying that my body has been coming up with new and interesting ways to tell me to rest. I had no idea how true that statement would have been.
been feeling unwell for the past few weeks. I had a big ulcer on my
tongue which stopped me from being able to talk and eat properly. I
thought I was run down. It cleared as ulcers do. Then I realised that
through this time I’d actually had a sore neck. While the children were
off my hands I popped in to see the doctor, who thought I had a problem
with my thyroid, so sent me for a blood test and an ultrasound. That
night the doctor rang to say I had to come in first thing in the
morning, and if I felt worse to go to hospital. I was thinking I might
need to get my thyroid out. When I went in the see the doctor next day
everyone in the surgery knew to expect me, and was abuzz that I was
there. Not a good sign.
it turned out my white cell count (wcc) was 70. The normal range is
4-11. I was given a referral to a Haematologist. I went home and looked
online at the words in the referral, and the details of the blood test
report. The words that kept coming up were bone marrow, immunology and
leukaemia. The specialist is part of the cancer care team. That night I
felt worse, so went to hospital. They gave me some fluids and medication
and took lots of blood. I saw a member of the Haematology team and
organised a bone marrow biopsy to see exactly what is going on and what
my treatment will be.
have Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia. It can be treated with medication I can
take at home. Untreated, it becomes acute and is fatal. I’ll be taking
the treatment. I don’t know yet what the side effects will be, and how
I’ll feel. At the moment I’m just very tired, a bit nauseous and short
of breath. I hope to feel better soon. I start the treatment next week.
Of all the leukaemias to get, this one is the most manageable, with the
greatest survival rate. So, I'm feeling pretty lucky. Lucky that I live in 2012, because this cancer can now be treated with designer drugs, and lucky to live in a city so I have access to medical care. We haven't ruled out chemotherapy at this stage, as more test results are being reported.
timing has been good. Because I had planned to be on prac I had cleared
four weeks to do nothing but that. I’ve cancelled prac, so have a few
more weeks to just deal with the sickness and try to get better. I’ve
enrolled in one unit of study over summer, but can withdraw if I don’t
feel I can manage.
Life can change pretty quickly. I’ll be a keeping close watch on my wcc, and seeing a haematologist, for the rest of my life.