Discouraging News

My CEA level (tumor marker) went up from 20 to 26.1 after a drop last time from 25 to 20. I’m trying very hard not to get really down about this, but I am discouraged. I thought things were going so well, and it’s easy to berate myself for being so optimistic and getting kicked in the butt for it. I know things haven’t gotten worse because of my optimism, but that’s in my head. In my heart, I’m sure I got too cocky and now am getting my just desserts. This head-heart war is tiring.

I know this increase could just be a blip or something, and I’m trying to stay positive, and optimistic, and not worry. But it’s hard not to worry. I won’t have another appointment for a little over 2 weeks, and I know I’m going to fret and worry that whole time. So I have a call in for my PA, who won’t be in until Monday, to see if we can have a discussion about what this may or may not mean. I know my partner and I will worry ourselves silly over this until the next blood test. I have to keep in perspective that my initial CEA was over 70 when I began treatment. I will not panic about this. I will not panic; I will not panic. Okay, maybe for a minute or two.

In the meantime, I intend to eat some chocolate; chocolate is medicine and will make me feel better. 🙂

10 thoughts on “Discouraging News

  1. Loads of chocolate for you, my dear. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this is just a blip. I know it’s hard to stay optimistic at times like this. Do you meditate? I know this sounds a bit airy-fairy, but meditation is a wonderful soother.

  2. I’m with Dianne, Ruth. Meditation is extremely powerful. But I know it can be hard to turn off one’s brain. When I have a hard time with focus, I try to bring myself back to my goal with my special meditation word. You know: for some people it is “ohm.” For me, I use the word “green.” Whatever works to rein in your brain, I say. Here’s a Huff Post article about it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sharon-frey/meditation-tips_b_1940346.html And here’s a “how to” one that might be more useful: http://life.gaiam.com/article/how-increase-your-focus-through-meditation

  3. I so know what you’re talking about when you say your brain always is going a mile a minute. That’s not so much my issue, but my poor mother — when she’d go to bed at night, the minute her head hit the pillow she’d be wide awake, “thinking about things”, as she said.

    My go-to technique is rain. I just put on a nice video that runs for several hours, and it always helps.

  4. I’m sorry to hear this, Ruth. It makes for a brutal roller coaster ride. I know how impossible it is at times to stop all the brain-chatter. It’s why I play stupid online games, they help to numb the chatter for awhile.

    I don’t know what else to say. Having watched so many loved ones go through this, I remember hearing that the fluctuations in CEA tumor markings isn’t all that unusual. I wish your medical team had been more proactive in talking with you about it right away so that you don’t have to go through so much time of anxious waiting. It always seems so cruel to me that they make you wait so long for answers and/or explanations.

    I too try hard to stay positive…but there are times when throwing something against the wall might help. Anger and rage at all of this is understandable and a normal reaction to the brutality of it all. I suspect that nothing’s going to make you feel better until you talk with your PA and get some answers.

  5. Thank you, Sharon. The wait on the results is because of the lab. I’m going to try getting the blood work a day or two before my next appt so we can have a discussion about it when I have my appt and not have to wait for a day or two after my appt. I know fluctuations are common, but it didn’t help to hear it had gone up. But I’m better now; it was just a shock when I was expecting it to go down again. 😦

  6. You can berate yourself for being optimistic, but pessimism would have produced the same response. All of life is a series of ups and downs — health, the stock market, the tides. Maybe this most recent check caught things on a slightly upward blip. I think chocolate is a great idea.

Ruth passed away from cancer. Please remove from list

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