Over the weekend I had been experiencing chest pain when I took in deep breaths or when I swallowed. It was isolated to just the right side behind my breast. It was mostly just annoying, not too terrible of pain. I called over the weekend to make sure it wasn’t something more serious and doctor on call told me it could be a number of things and I should go to the ER to get a chest X-ray if it got any worse. I waited until Monday to check back in and the folks at UT Southwestern were pretty insistent that I go get an X-ray that day and meet with them first thing the next morning. They said that I could definitely have a tumor in my lung without yet having shortness of breath. I told the medical folks that I had just had a lung X-ray with the port surgery but that seemed a long enough time ago (2-3 weeks) to warrant another one. Needless to say, I was pretty stinking worried. They also said it could be thrush but I didn’t have anything weird going on in my mouth so that didn’t seem likely to me.
I’m soooo thankful that the NP called me that night with the results. My chest X-ray came back totally clear. Lungs looked perfect. What a relief that was! Currently they are thinking I have infectious esophagitis and I’m on medicine to hopefully clear it up. At this point, anything sounds better than metastatic cancer! I’m sure this is one of many random symptoms/issues I will have along the way.
So I thought we were in the clear but then I got a call the next morning telling me after further inspection of the X-ray it looks like there is a kink in my port line. On monday the nurse had trouble drawing blood from the port, so that would make perfect sense. What that means is I’m scheduled to have a new port placed this Friday morning- yay more surgery! They will put dye into the line before surgery to make sure it definitely needs to be replaced (if there is a leak or something?). I’m glad we found out this week so we could get it fixed in time for chemo next Monday. So my esophagitis led to an X-ray which led to finding a potential problem with the port that could have led to other problems and delayed chemo. What a blessing!
I'm disappointed in my reaction to thinking the pain was a tumor in my lung. I was tearing up in the X-ray room, crying as we left the hospital, sobbing on the way home picturing the boys growing up without a mom, and making plans for the next month before I would die. I think it made me realize that I'm not truly "holding my life loosely". Over the years I've worked to hold my home, job, even my family members loosely - that is, recognizing them to be gifts from God that He could easily take away if it was His will. I honestly never considered that I needed to hold my very life loosely. Just as I am only a steward of the money or material possessions God has blessed me with, I am only a steward of the time on this earth God graces me with. My hope is that I would be a good steward of the money, talents, and now time, that has God blessed me with- no matter how long or how short that may be, while knowing He has a greater purpose if He does choose to end my life through this disease.