Monday, March 2, 2009

E Ticket Ride at Disneyland

For those of you that are old enough, you know what the E ticket ride at Disneyland was. I’m not talking about an “E”lectronic ticket, nor am I talking about Disney World. The E ticket at Disneyland was for the best rides. Back in the old days of the 50s, 60s, and 70s, you needed a ticket for each ride once you were inside the park. As a kid growing up in southern California I used to love going to Disneyland and going on the E ticket rides like the Matterhorn with all the speed, twists, turns, and bumps. No matter how many times I rode the Matterhorn, it always thrilled me. To ride the Matterhorn, you needed the E ticket. A C ticket would get you a seat on the Dumbo Flying Elephants. An A ticket would get you into the Sleeping Beauty Castle. The Castle really wasn’t my cup of tea. For me it was all about the E tickets. Truth is, even as a young adult back in Southern California, I still loved the E ticket rides.

What’s this have to do with my cancer? I’m older now and having cancer is like an E ticket ride, but not in a good sense. There are lots of spins, turns, and other unexpected moves that take your breath away.

I stopped posting to this log recently. I was trying to leave cancer world behind. Having no evidence of disease for 16 months has put me in a place where I have been trying to get on with my life outside and away from cancer world. The thing is however, for me, it always seems to want to pull me back in.

In early February I went in for some tests at my primary care physician (PCP) due to experiencing a slight shortness of breath. My doctor took a chest x-ray and did a lung capacity test. He said my x-ray looked clear (although he would have to send it to the radiologist for review) and that my lung capacity was excellent. Given that this all looked okay, he had me see a cardiologist to rule out any heart troubles. That exam was last week. The initial tests were all good. I have one more test tomorrow, but am really not expecting that test to turn up any heart issue. My PCP called today (3+ weeks after my x-ray) and asked me to come back in for another x-ray. The radiologist found a spot on one of my ribs that he thought could be a bone shadow (no big deal)… or, it could be a lung nodule (i.e., lung cancer). For three years at the cancer center my doctors have been very pleased that my H&N cancer has not spread to my lungs. Lung cancer is a natural progression for H&N cancer. Of course, since they are always on the lookout for this and because my mom died of lung cancer in September of 2000, it has heightened my sensitivity to this potential issue. My guess is that it will turn out to be nothing. I feel too good physically (maybe a bit tired at times) to believe that I may have lung cancer. I shared all of this earlier today with my oncologist at the cancer center. He is adding a chest CT to the H&N CT which was already scheduled for next week. The results from those tests will be ready around March 18th. Between now and then, I have to keep reminding myself to take advantage of this time.

Even if the cancer is not back (and I don’t think it is), it is never the less unrelenting. It's like the E ticket ride at Disneyland, even if you're scared and want to get off, you can't.

Thanks for checking in. I'll post again when I have some definitive news. Take care of yourself.


Anonymous said...

Hi... just happen to cross your site... I see that you also love Disney... me too...

Im planning to go to Tokyo or Hong Kong Disney this Christmas. Hoho and I found some stuffs from Hong Kong Disneyland here as well:

I will definitely take tones of photos there!!!

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