Thursday, October 22, 2009

Laura's Not Visiting

Candace Silverman was my best friend in the 7th grade. It didn't take long before we spent tons of time together. So much time that soon we were on the same menstrual cycle. Candace liked to have code words and phrases for everything and so she decided that when we got our periods we should say "Laura's visiting." Random. And no one knew what the hell we were talking about so we thought we were brilliant. Laura's visits were always a nuisance. I was crampy and uncomfortable and am pretty sure I said things like "I can't wait for menopause." And so I find it ironic that now I am ecstatic that Laura may be visiting.

I wake up feeling crampy and am overjoyed when I notice some spotting. I call Dr. McAndrew immediately and ask her how I'll know whether it's my period or not. And I tell Boris that if it is my period, I'm having eggs harvested tomorrow. "Let's just take things one step at a time," he says. Dr. McAndrew tells me the only way to know whether the spotting is actually a period is to have my hormone levels tested (i.e., a blood draw). I sprint to her office and willingly extend my vein to the nurse. "How soon will you have results?" I ask. I'm told that I can call the nurse tomorrow.

Exactly 24 hours later I excitedly call the nurse. My spotting has pretty much stopped, but I'm still happy and confident. Until she reads me my results. The numbers are better than the previous time they were checked, but I'm still menopausal. Fuck. I know it's only been 3 months since my last chemo treatment and most women's periods come back within 6 months to a year, but still. I've already made it through the worst of menopause. Hot flashes every second, bitchiness (more than normal), zero sex drive and just generally feeling like an old woman. But I want Laura to visit. Now.

Just before my next appointment with Dr. McAndrew I start spotting again. It's been 3 weeks since Laura didn't visit. Since my hormone levels were tested so recently the nurse doesn't check them again. After waiting an hour (so annoying!) I tell Dr. McAndrew that I'm spotting again (I also tell her nurse that I can't wait hours each time I come to the office so from now on, I'm going to call her and she'll tell me how late Dr. McAndrew is running and when I should actually come in). Dr. McAndrew says the spotting is a good sign and that hormone levels can change so fast. She says that the spotting may be my ovaries waking up, but to give my body time to heal, rebuild and regain strength. "You're barely 4 months out from chemo," she says. "Many people still suffer from chemo side effects after 4 months." I probably am too (in fact my eyelashes which were finally long and thick recently broke off and are growing back. Again.). We schedule my next round of Zometa and she tells me again that as I'm getting closer to being able to get pregnant with my daughter (she swears my period will come back), I'll stop getting Zometa. She says there shouldn't be any issues with with having Zometa in my system. I hope. And we schedule my next round of scans. Generally, she likes to wait 9-12 months between scans to avoid too much radiation, but when I tell her how terrified of a recurrence I am (who isn't!?), she says that we should schedule my scans in December, which is 9 months from last set of scans.

Baron will be 9 months old then. I don't know where the time has gone. He's already standing up and trying to walk and saying "dadadada." Rude. I just smile at him and say "mamama."

So for now I wait for scans. And a report that they're clear. And I wait and hope that Laura will visit soon.