“One minute at a time! Some days are too much to handle so break it down. Deal with the moment in front of you and worry about the next when you get there.”
“Being diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer after a by chance finding on an unrelated radiology test was shocking enough, but then to find out that the cancer had already spread to 2 different sections of lymph nodes and had been there for maybe 7 – 10 years already was mind blowing! I had always felt I had a thyroid issue but was told by many doctors that my blood work was normal so they would brush off my complaints and blame them on something else.
It was a very scary and difficult time from diagnosis to surgery and treatment. I underwent a total thyroidectomy, had 2 para-thyroids removed and 49 lymph nodes in a neck dissection. Recovery was very tough and I had issues with my voice and swallowing and choking for many months to follow. Radioactive iodine treatment then occurred and shortly thereafter I was diagnosed with lymphedema in my neck and chest and had to go to lymphedema therapy for 6 weeks! The most challenging part has been trying to get my medication correct and thyroid numbers in optimal range. I have been changed about 15 times already and we are still struggling to find the right type of medication, dose and on which combo I feel the best. 2 years and counting, but I know I will get there.”
Motivation to fight cancer
“I have had so many amazing, brave and incredible friends and family fight all types of cancer before me. Watching their journeys gave me strength to do what I needed to do. I had too much to still do in life and was focused on addressing the cancer and putting it all behind me to get on with living life as soon as I could.”
“The aftermath of cancer surgery and treatment. Dealing with seromas that had to be drained to numbness to loss of my voice to lymphedema in my neck and more were all very difficult and even more so when you have to work full time through the process.”
Message to other cancer patients
“You CAN do this. You may not think so now, but I promise you – dig way deep down because that strength is in there. Seek out support groups even if it is on social media. I found so many very helpful tips and information from other thyroid cancer patients just be joining these groups.”