I must have read in every cancer book that part of this journey is to make sure you seek a second opinion. Doctors are brilliant, talented and above average decision makers. They are also human! I love my doctors and trust them very much and believe that they have my best interest at heart. With that said, I am seeking a second opinion from the Mayo Clinic on Friday March 2nd. Oh how I wish this was a simple clear-cut black and white battle, but it’s not.
“It’s rather several shades of gray, ” one doctor quoted.
There have been many issues about the facts of this diagnosis that are borderline and bothersome! Where one doctor says treating a slight HER2 positive issue is not worth all the consequences of possible side effects another doctor says that even a slight positive score must be treated! All of that is complicated by two different tests; one reports a negative presence and the other a positive presence. So, off to Mayo Clinic we go looking for the tie breaking vote.
The Mayo Clinic sent us a checklist of all the tests they want to review. I am completely impressed that they want to see the diagnostic tests for themselves, they also want the original tissue slides and written reports. It seems to me that they are going to take a fresh analysis approach to the case and file. I am so relieved! I consulted another breast cancer group who only wanted the written reports. I believe we’ll be in great hands when we arrive in Scottsdale AZ.
Meanwhile the Chemo treatment I was supposed to get last week, will be done this coming week. Then when Mayo determines we are on the right track, fantastic! If not we’ll change it up, but we must get started.
The local doctors office where I go continues to impress me with their financial aid. Before the insurance kicked in they guided me to call ahead and negotiate cash prices with the service providers. What would have been over $55,000 paid out in cash was reduced to about $15,000. With the generosity of friends and family, a large chunk of that has been paid. Just the other day they sent me paperwork to fill out for the Patient Advocate Foundation Co-Pay Relief Program, who will help us with the co-pay payments. They really have been remarkable with helping facilitate the assistance needed to get the proper care.
Mornings like this when I wake up and feel nervous and scared, all I have to do is think about everything I can be thankful for and it settles me. I am so thankful that I’m not alone, that I have been well taken care of, that I still open cards and letters every single day, phone calls from friends, that my husband holds my hand even while I’m sleeping, that two of my daughters and my mother have journeyed many miles to spend some beautiful sunny days with me and another daughter and another sister are on their way. I am thankful for cancer research, for the Mayo Clinic, for the pink ribbon tattoo my niece put on her chest, for my new dammit doll, for a song my sisters dedicated to promise to love me through this, for the joy all my grand children have given me, Good morning.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things.