Daily Archives: September 26, 2013

Can I Go Grab Another Doctor?

 Well, let’s go back to the start. Shall we?

Two weeks ago I went in for a visit to the Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

HMMM. Nope, must go back a bit further.

Ms. Emma had her One Month visit and The Toddler had his first allergy visit with our new Pediatrician.  I do not know for the life of me what took me so long to switch docs.  Seriously.  I was not listened to, was treated like a child and worst of all was not given a prescription for an Epi-Pen even though The Toddler has an anaphalysis response to Arrow Root- a wheat substitute.  Wheat?!? Which could be in literally a ton of products… treats found on the playground(glad that phase of picking crap up off the ground is over-yuck).  I was “that” Mom who followed their child around on the playground checking everything they picked up because well, he could die.  Seriously, the hospital said we only had minutes before… well there lays the root to all of my nightmares.

The first time I went to meet with her, our new pediatrician? The Toddler wasn’t even with me and BOOM- Epi-Pen.(The sigh that was heard around the world).  SHE understands. SHE listens. SHE is our new pediatrician.  

So three doctor appointments in one day. Crazy? Yes.  But MUCH better than spread out over three days.  Why? Well, as anyone who has two children under two knows-it takes hours to get out of the house. Hours.

I kid you not.

So after meticulous planning- feeding-prepping.  We made it to the Pediatrician.  The Toddler opened up doors for me, held my hand while we were walking, and calmly sat and read during the visit- WHOSE KID IS THIS? Love that he understands what I need from him now. Love.  Both of them were checked out and we were off to my doctor appointment.  

Half hour to Pediatrician.  Hour at visit. Hour drive to Mayo Clinic. Em HATES the car seat.  

The Toddler’s poor ears.  She is one loud, little lady.

Well, we made it. We traversed the floors of the Mayo Clinic.  Signed in- waited 45 minutes.  

One LONG day.  My poor babies.  Having to be polite and quiet for so many hours in one day is a stretch.  BUT- with the double stroller clad with books, dried fruit, and stickers-Em in the Baby K’tan(she hates just laying in the stroller if we are at a stop so I had to jam her into it once we were in the waiting room to save-all of us- from hearing her sing) we were ready as we ever were going to be.  

Although, it has to be said, I have never-ever-ever received so much help, praise, kind words from strangers. Ever.  It was the biggest blessing.  

I was in for a skin-check.  Skin cancer runs in my family.  My mother and grandmother both have/had it.  Because of this, I have done pre-emptive strikes on suspicious moles.  One removed from my face and four removed from my back.  All were thought to possibly be Basal Cell skin cancer, all came back clear.  

Well, now that I had hit my health insurance deductible I wanted to go to all of the doctor’s appointments I could get in before December.  Thankful that I got into the Mayo Clinic so fast- took four days. AMAZING.

My doctor looked me over from head to toe.  It is of note that after having two children I am no longer shy about being naked in front of Doctors.  This comes in handy when you have a check-up like this.  There were many spots that gave the Doctor pause.  But one spot on my face made him immediately look-up, and ask, “Can I go grab another doctor?”. Why no! Of course you can not! I do not want a second opinion.

I said yes, of course.  Who doesn’t want a second opinion when your doctor freaks out and basically runs from the room to gather help?!? No one I hope.

So after three Doctors look me over again they all agree that the spot on my face looks bad.  They don’t know how bad but they wanted to cut an inch long-deep chunk out of me.  They said that they could just take a sliver, but that I would have to come back if it came back positive. As if my looks were more important than my health.

Lop it off, I told them.

The nurse held my hand, for I was not prepared to get such a large chunk taken out of my face.  I really love nurses that understand. 

At this point Em was screaming-hungry-diaper full-and The Toddler was exhausted, having passed his nap time three hours prior… goodtimes.

Well, I was told that the results can take from 7-10 days to come in- but they usually just take a couple of days.  AND- make sure that you get pointy scissors to remove the stitches.

YES.

I removed my own stitches   I waited the seven days- TOO LONG FYI.  I went to cut them out and well-skin had grown over some of the wires.  I got them cut and out-but it took awhile.  I threw-up afterwards and called my little sister to proudly spout that “I had done it!”-she is a nurse.

Seven days- I cut out the stitches-still no call.  And then on day nine?  I get a call that it was a type of lymphoma-a very rare tumor.  Arnold Schwarzenegger, “It is a TUMOR.” 

BUT- they got ALL of it.  So yes, I am thankful my vanity didn’t get in the way of my health.  Frankly, I intend to stick around for a good long while to raise my beautiful babies… Large scar on my face? Well, it just matches the other scar from another cancer scare and yet another one from being attacked by a dog when I was five.  All told, I have had 98 stitches on my face. 98.  

So dear friends.  I have been a bit remiss lately.  A tad negative, perhaps. I blame lack of sleep and the stress of waiting for an answer.  The answer was not exactly what I was hoping for, but it is an answer.  Maybe, this is a bit jumbled-like my mind. But I just need to write sometimes.  I didn’t really talk to anyone about my fears, or the reality that it was cancer and this is cathartic for me.  Although, to be fair.  Even though it was cancer, I do not believe I am a cancer survivor-I just got it cut out-no chemo-no radiation.  I am lucky.

So please, please make sure you see a dermatologist at least once a year.  I know that I will probably not hit my deductible next year…. don’t plan on another child until 2015… but I will be making an appointment to get checked nonetheless.  I need to be around for the next fifty years- they can lop off all the skin they want.