Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Cancer free... maybe... probably...

Back in July I had my latest PET scan. Here in France they send the results to your doctor(s). As he hadn't contacted me I've called my ORL a couple of times in the past weeks to try and get the results. No reply.

I know he will tell me, like he did last time, that "if there were any problems we would have contacted you immediately and reacted". But, he just doesn't understand that, I actually need the reassurance. He has no idea how we cancer survivors eagerly await those simple words "there's nothing" just to let us know the damn things haven't come back somewhere else in our body.

I think quite a lot of cancer victims/survivors feel a bit out of touch with their body. They don't know how these things got in there and once they've gotten them out (hopefully) they definitely do not, under any circumstance, want them back. That's why we go through these tests. That's why we go through these scans. It's not just because the doctors tell us to.

It's because we want someone in the medical profession to simply look at a test and/or a scan and then say "There's no cancer in you".

It doesn't matter if they add the "right now" modifier afterwards. It's a wonderful feeling, every now and then, to know that at any given moment there is no cancer in me.

Waiting for my doctor to return my calls...

In the mean time keep following me on Twitter to keep up with the day-to-day trials and tribulations of my life: @dcefrance.

New F*©k Cancer T-Shirts

Some of you may remember the F*©k cancer shirts I found back in June 2008. As you may remember I thought it was a great idea and I ordered a bunch of the shirts. A year and a bit later and quite a few e-mails back and forth and I still never received the T-shirts I ordered and paid for.

Recently I saw a whole new batch of T-shirts with cancer-related phrases on them. I decided to make my own. The Internet is truly wonderful when we live in a time when you can design your own T-shirt (text, fonts, size, placement, images, ...), pay for it online and have it delivered to your home in a couple of days.

This is my first try and I am so pleased with it I am probably going to make some more real soon. As you can see the front says "CHEMO GRAD 2005" in a font which reminds me a bit of both the military and high-school. It fits how I was feeling when I made the shirt. I am also obviously proud to have survived chemotherapy and the year is a healthy reminder.

It is really difficult to take a picture of the back of a T-shirt. You have to set the webcam on timer and try and sit, or crouch, right. It ain't easy. The back says "F*©K CANCER" in the same font and precisely where I wanted it (a bit high on the shoulder, right between the blades). Just in case people didn't understand the front of the shirt they'll definitely get the back... if they or I turn around.

I promise I'll take photos of any other T-shirts I decide to make. This is too much fun!

Scarface.... 4 years later

Here's a picture of me and my scar 4 years after the surgery. The goal is still to show the evolution of the scar which may be of interest to others who may, unfortunately, have to go through the same type of procedure:

September, 2009

The photo below shows my scar last year which was, of course, 3 years after surgery. It comes from my blog entry of December 19th, 2008. It doesn't look, to me, like anything has changed in a year. Even my office looks the same. The scar may be a bit browner but it's hard to tell as last year's picture looks so red. It's perhaps faded a tiny bit more. I still get the same brief spasms of pain and blockage when I sit in the wrong position. But I get over it pretty quickly as I'm more used to it now.

December, 2008

The photo below shows my scar the previous year which was, of course, 2 years after surgery. It comes from my blog entry of October 2007. Not a lot had changed since the previous year. The scar is perhaps a slight bit faded and a bit more brown and less red.

October, 2007

I think there was much more evolution and change between years 1 and 2 than between the later years. But it gets better all the time...

I didn't take any photos the first year. But below is the photo from right after the bandages were taken off. It comes from my blog entry of September 26th, 2005.

September, 2005