We Remember Caylee Marie Anthony

We Remember Caylee Marie Anthony
Last Photo of Caylee: 6.15.08

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

When Unfortunate was Fortunate

I was 26 years old when I was told I had cervical cancer.

I remember the date, September 22, 1997, one month before my youngest daughter turned 1.
Two days earlier, I had been chatting on the phone with one of my closest girlfriends who was expecting her first child at the time. We had a habit of long phone calls. Both of my girls were asleep at the time. She and I talked for almost two hours.
When I got off the phone, I noticed it. There, on the sofa, the biggest, darkest spot I had ever seen in my life.
It was blood, a lot of blood.
I felt faint.
I felt scared.
I knew my periods had been irregular for a while. They were getting worse though, this particular week had brought about more concern and I was at the point where I was wearing 'overnight' pads on top of each other.
This day, during a time of 2 hours, it had went through the two pads, my shorts and onto and into my sofa. (yes, I had it cleaned)
I remember thinking I looked freakin' bow-legged when I walked because of the ginormous amount of pad between my legs.
On top of it all, I could not get in to see my OB/BYN.
On this day, however, I called them, frantic, telling them I had to get in and I had to get in NOW! They set an appointment for the next morning. I went in had the routine exam and left, not knowing anymore than when I went in. I was told to "just wait" for the lab results to come back.
Dr. Not- So-McDreamy also thought I needed to be on an anti-depressant, (WTF?) so off I went to the pharmacy to start what I now refer to as 'The Paxil Years'.
I waited four days, not counting the weekend that was in there, and called the Nurse. She told me there were no lab results back yet, call back in two days. Two days later, I called back and was told that everything seemed fine on my labs. I needed to reschedule to come back in and have tests run for other diagnosis.
By this time I am going through a box of "overnight size" pads a day.
Remember girls, this was the late 90's. No thin mini was going to tackle this.
There were no appointments available for my Dr., I had to wait another week. I even had connections, because I had worked at this hospital before and during my first pregnancy. That was to no avail.
I couldn't understand why no one but I could see something was wrong, terribly wrong.
A few days before my appointment, my Doctor called me at home. Now, you know that it is not good when your DOCTOR calls you at HOME. I immediately sat down. He started by asking how I was feeling and if there had been any improvements, to which I answered an emphatic "NO!". Then came the clincher.
Doc: "I am calling first to apologize to you and to give you some news."
I am waiting on the other end of the line, too afraid to speak. Too afraid to think. I do remember I wanted to throw the phone and run away.
After what seemed like thirty minutes, but was probably only 30 seconds,
Dr.IDontHaveTimeToSeeYouInMyOffice spoke, "I am apologizing for a clerical error. Your lab results were inadvertently labeled with another patient's name, but thank goodness we caught it." (It had been three weeks) "I also need to tell you, Mrs.IHopeYourPaxilHasStartedWorking, it seems, according to the lab work, you have cervical cancer. You are at Stage 2a, invasive. Do you know about staging? You had to have had the cancer during your last pregnancy, but unfortunately, it wasn't detected."
'Unfortunately?' was all I could think. I still had not uttered one word or sound.
"Are you there?", my doctor asked.
I managed a "yes".
He apologized again and told me he wanted me to come in the next day.
I finally managed to speak, "I have been trying to get in to see you for almost three weeks, and now, all of a sudden, I can see you tomorrow?" Why? Because I have CANCER? I wanted to scream. Because you screwed up and now you are terrified I am going to sue your ass? Of course, I didn't scream all of this, but I really wanted to.
I agreed to the appointment and we said our goodbyes.

'Unfortunately' kept creeping back into my mind that night. I know what Dr.F-up, meant by 'unfortunately' it wasn't detected. ....maybe it would not have become invasive, maybe I wouldn't be a stage 2a, maybe I wouldn't be sitting here with cancer at all.
My mind was racing and all I kept thinking was 'Fortunately' and 'Thank God'. I would not have wanted to be faced with a decision on whether or not to terminate my pregnancy due to the cancer.
Fortunately, my beautiful baby girl was not affected by the cancer.
Fortunately, my pregnancy was uneventful, save for having morning sickness almost the entire 9 months. This, however, was odd, considering I only had mild morning sickness with my first pregnancy. Also, I lost weight with my second pregnancy, instead of ballooning a 65 pounds (9 was all girl) as I did with my first.
I was wondering if these could have been some small clues that could have set signals off if someone were to be looking for cancer, but no one was.

Before I finally fell asleep, I remember thinking how do they mislabel something as important as lab work?
It came quickly to my mind that there was another person involved in this.
Someone I didn't know.
I said a prayer for her as well and thought, "Fortunately, the woman who was told she had (my)cancer now does not." Thank God.


Patti said...

Wow. You are a stronger woman than I could ever be. I hope you don't mind if I continue to stop by and "peek".

spoiledmom said...

@patti: people tell me that but i dont feel "strong". i just keep on keeping on. i think we all have things in our lives we have to overcome. somehow you just do it.
and no, i dont mind your peeks...LOL i enjoy them.

Remember Caylee

Song: "Mad World" Gary Jules "I find it kinda funny, I find it kinda sad. The dreams in which I'm dying are the best I've ever had.. It's a mad, mad world.." Video courtesy Sean Krause '08 Sleep Well Friend, Justice for Caylee has finally begun ~SM 6.23.11

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child of God, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend. Live life with arms wide open, living, laughing, and loving out loud. Blessed for each day I am given. Cancer survivor x 2. And for this... I am Spoiled.