Thursday, February 2, 2012

Panic Attack

Most know the feeling. Can’t breath. Heart racing. Stomach doing cartwheels. Dizzy. Light headed. Mind is about to explode. There are several things that cause me to have them. Being around too many people will do it. Feeling like I am closed in a space and I can’t get out. There are usually things I can do to make things better.
I have a new reason I get them. Now I am on a never ending roller coaster and I can never get off. I have enjoyed riding physical roller coasters in the past. Usually within the first few seconds you start asking yourself what the heck were you thinking and why did you get on. But before you know it the ride is over and you can go back to enjoying everything else. Not this roller coaster. You can’t get off. Sure, you can question yourself about why you did the things you did that put you on this ride but you still can’t get off. No emergency break. No red flag. So what’s the option now? Get use to it? I don’t like this ride. I don’t think I will ever like it and I don’t think anyone that is on it will ever like it.
It comes with its share of thoughts and emotions…..
I read a story yesterday about a guy that was diagnosed at a very early stage. Did surgery to remove it and told him they would continue to do the skin checks but no further testing was needed because it was caught so early. No scans, no x-rays, no blood work, no lymph node removal, no nothing. Zoom forward 5 years and he developed a cough that wouldn’t go away. No big deal, he was taking over the counter medicine for it, figured it would go away eventually. Then he started getting really bad headaches. This prompted his wife to take him to the emergency room. After testing they found out the melanoma was back and with a vengeance. They opted to go to MDA for treatment. 7 weeks after he was informed the melanoma was back he passed away. Throughout those 5 years he kept up with his scheduled appointments. Always got the good to go. No worries. See you next appointment. He didn’t know the full story about melanoma and his wife didn’t either. The doctors said no big deal so must be no big deal.
This story is what is causing my panic attack today. I have not been referred to an oncologist which would seem like the logical next step since melanoma is Cancer! There was no order for blood work. She was going to order an x-ray but since I am already having the chest CT then there is no point. (I get that part and I am thankful I at least have those). No need to remove lymph nodes for testing. I go for more biopsies on Monday. I will ask her if she was in my shoes would she be following the plan that has been set for me. There are no safety harnesses on this roller coaster. No seatbelts. You can’t pray to get off the roller coaster because once you are on there is no turning back. You are stuck in that seat for life.
So here is what I will pray for. Please let me stay on this ride for a very, very long time. Please give me the strength and knowledge to ask the questions that need to be asked. Please help me with my panic attacks by reminding me I am not on this ride alone because you will never leave my side. No matter how many flips, twist, turns, jolts, or loop to loops, you will be there. I know through you anything is possible. Amen!


  1. You can do it girl! Be smart, be informed and take this bull by the horns and ride it like a champion! I will be here cheering for you!
    love you girl!

  2. I think of my oncologist as the navigator on my journey. I also don’t think we can have too much information and I find the more questions I ask and the more information I get the better I feel. The unknown is scary. Keep up the great work on the blog.