Last night, I couldn’t sleep. I laid awake, palpating a new area that felt like tumor, trying to remember whether it was in the radiation field or not. Is there a new tumor lurking just beyond the borders of the radiation? (Represented by the creepy tree in my doodle). I told my oncologist about this new area and despite no evidence of a new tumor on MRI, she took my word for it, “You know your body.” When I told her how concerned I was about it, she accompanied me to radiation to make sure that this “new area” was being treated. What an amazing doctor for listening to my concerns and for trusting me as a patient. She has been my oncologist since 2008 and she has seen that with every new tumor, I have been able to “feel” it one year in advance before it shows up on an MRI. Oh the benefits of longitudinal care and being able to see the same doctor over the years!

During radiation, I wish there was a bright light or glitter of some sort that indicates that there is something actually happening. I can’t help but wonder, did they forget to turn the machine on? It’s not like surgery where you wake up and see results. It can take days, weeks, to see a change in skin and until I see that change, I keep wondering about the status of that on and off switch…

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