Happy Anniversary to Me?
A year ago today, during a visit with a friend in Providence, he convinced me to go to the ER to investigate the abdominal pain I had been ignoring for two days. We're moms, right? It'll go away eventually and we have stuff to do.
After ten hours of testing (and worrying that I was wasting everyone's time for bad gas or something equally simple), they sent me home with the following: "ultrasound shows multiple liver masses SUSPICIOUS OF CANCER."
"It's probably nothing," the doctor said. "But you need to get an MRI when you get home, just to be safe."
You guys know the ultimate diagnosis. "Probably nothing" turned out to be Stage IV Colon Cancer with metastasis to the liver. 9 years before anyone would even suggest my first colonoscopy. And that abdominal pain I had been experiencing did go away a day or two later. I'm not sure how long it would have taken me to discover my Stage IV "probably nothing" if it hadn't been for my friend (thanks, Kurt).
Colon cancer in people in their 40's is on the rise. Doctors don't tend to ask the screening questions of this age group, so diagnosis is delayed. We're too busy and a little grossed out at the idea of colonoscopies, so we don't push for them. I wish I had gotten one at 40, but I can't go back.
More importantly, I wish all of you would get one. Please let me know if you do. I love you all.