my excuse to talk about knitting, cats and life in general

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

I'm back; diagnosis

I'm back again, like a bad penny. Life has been happening. I still am hazy about posting photos. I haven't done any Bohus knitting, but there is more on that front.

My daughter was home after college was out for the summer, visiting before getting back to Philly to work. I had bought a Bohus kit for her, the Blue Shimmer hat and scarf. We wound off the yarn by hand. It seemed too rough to use a swift and ball winder. The yarn is wonderfully soft and fine, almost as fine as laceweight. Well, I gave her a portion of the pattern and some other yarn, fine but not as fine and only wool, so she could learn colorwork. She finished that and took on the hat. Just under a week later... her hat was done, except for weaving in ends and sewing up the hem. Don't blink, oops, you just missed it all. She knits like the wind.

The hat looks fabulous and it fits her. Pictures at 11 (but I'm not promising which day...)

During all this, I've had a continuing health issue, starting with an unexpected spot on an MRI. I've posted about this on Knitters Review, but I felt like copying those posts and putting them here. Here goes .....

early post, 8 June 06
I've had problems with sciatica since I was pregnant, and she's nearly 21. My neurologist got it under control with epidural steroid injections that can last years with no symptoms. The symptoms came back early in spring, so I went back to him to prescribe another series of shots. He ordered an MRI to see what was happening, and there was a spot on the MRI just at the edge of the film, in the sacrum, the bone at the base of the spine.

He's a very good doctor and he immediately ordered more tests, bone scan, skeletal survey, blood tests, and another MRI to focus on the area that showed up on the first one. Everything seemed OK, but it still wasn't explained. He sent me to an oncologist/hematologist. He did a bone marrow biopsy and ordered some other tests.

All along, I felt like something was up. I'm 58 and we're looking at an anomaly in the bone marrow. My father was 58 when he was diagnosed with Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia, a rare bone marrow cancer. He died at 59, in 1964. I was 16. The coincidence of age and bone marrow made me uneasy.

One of the tests the oncologist ordered was a 24-hour urine collection. Oh, joy. My daughter was home from university and I put that off until the day after she left. Just before that I got a phone call from the oncologist's office to remind me to make the follow up appointment. That made me nervous. I felt they wouldn't be calling me like that if there wasn't something to tell me, know what I mean?

Yesterday, I took my husband with me for the follow up. I now have the diagnosis, chronic lymphocytic leukemia. In a way, I'm relieved. Now I know. I wasn't really upset; I'd been expecting something since early spring. There's a life expectancy of 15 to 20 years, in which time lots of research can be done. Anyway, I'm not giving in. I'm feeling positive and I'm fighting it. My mother's mother was just short of 96 when she died. My mother is 97 and still going. I fully intend to outdo my mother.

I told my daughter, who's in Philadelphia, 3000 miles from the SF Bay Area. She wants to come home for a while, so she will be. She can take a break from work. I'll be happy to see her.

I know this is a really long post, but KR is family, too, in a way, and one that I can really say anything to, at least as long as it's not mean or nasty. I feel quite positive. The "Twilight Zone" coincidence helped prepare me, so there really wasn't much of a shock.

I'm going to get a second and third opinion, check out local and not so local hospitals and cancer centers, do a lot of internet research and reading. And this mey be the kick in the pants I need finally to lose the extra weight. I feel more motivated than in the past. Hey! Then I'll feel like knitting sweaters for myself! Up until now the sweaters have been for my daughter and husband. A sweater for myself would take miles of yarn and years of knitting. Always a connection to knitting wherever I look.

Love you all


You can take the girl out of New York, but you can't take New York out of the girl.


Post a Comment

<< Home