Thursday, January 28, 2010

Monday, January 25, 2010

Lump Update

Matea had her appointment today with the ENT. He said several things that were all positive...

1. Swollen lymph nodes in this location are very common for her age group. He said he sees them all the time and that if we checked all of the kids in her preschool class, he's almost positive we'd find at least one more kid with a lump in the same spot as Matea's.

2. Her lump is actually small even though it feels big to us. Up to 15mm is considered "normal" and not worrisome and he estimates her lump is 10mm or less.

3. Steve and I may be the ones causing it to stay swollen. He said lymph nodes in children are very sensitive and our daily checking of the lump for growth could be what's causing it to not go away.

So, he told me to keep our hands off of it and bring her back in in 6 weeks. If the lump is still there, he'll do an ultrasound in his office and be able to get a good idea whether it's really just a swollen lymph node or a tumor. If it does look like a tumor he'll do a needle biopsy to see whether it's malignant. When he said "needle biopsy" Matea said, "No, I don't want that!". I asked him if the lump is still there and it does look like a tumor and it is malignant, what kind of cancer are we looking at? He said that the probability of that is so low that he won't even discuss it with me.

So, overall, he seemed fairly sure that's it's nothing. I was hoping for a firmer answer today and wish we were going back in sooner than 6 weeks but I'm going to do my best to relax and trust him. And I'm going to remind myself that he handled Bella's lip surgery very well and that actually did turn out to be a tumor that wasn't malignant. And I'm going to have some alcohol tonight:)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

"Very Original"

Ya think? How many lipstick and purple tutu wearing whales have you seen?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Health Watch 2010

I thought this would be the quickest and easiest way to keep everyone updated on Matea's lump.

Two weeks ago, when we were all really sick with a stomach virus, Steve found a small, hard lump in Matea's neck. It's at the base of her neck, on the left side, right around where her neck meets her shoulder. I would say it's about the size of a small gumball.

I took her to our pediatrician last Wednesday and she said the lump is "unusual". It's lower than the normal lymph nodes that get swollen during illness but higher than the collarbone lymph nodes that almost always are symptoms of cancer. She said she was 98% confident that it was just a swollen lymph node from being sick that was in a weird spot for whatever reason but she sent us for blood work anyway.

The doctor tested Matea for cat scratch fever, mono, and cancer markers. The blood draw was AWFUL. Tatey was such a trooper but because she's tiny, was dehydrated from illness, and comes from a family of people with bad veins (thanks mama, grandma, and great-grandpa), the nurse had a really hard time finding a vein and actually getting blood to come out. Once she was finished she said she was worried she hadn't gotten enough and would call us in a few hours if we needed to come back. Oh hells no!

Later that night in the car, I told Steve that I wanted to punch the nurse when she said we might have to go back in. I thought I was being discreet but Tatey piped up and said, "Yeah Mommy, if we ever go back to that place, I just think you should punch them!". That's my girl.

I called the next day and found out the results were negative. Of course that's a good thing but it means we still don't know what the lump is. Dr. Hoffman referred us to an ENT (the same one Bella saw to have the blood vessel tumor removed from her lip two years ago) and the soonest appointment we could get is January 25th.

I haven't been able to sleep at night because I'm worried about my baby. During the day, I see she's happy and healthy and I can think rationally and believe the lump is really nothing. But for some reason at night, when we're in our separate beds, I feel much less secure. So, she's been waking up some nights and I've been letting her sleep next to me because I need the snuggles.

When I took Bella to the doctor for her 6 year check up yesterday, I asked Dr. Hoffman whether she could call the ENT and get Matea in sooner. I told her I was completely freaked out and she assured me again that she didn't think there was anything to be concerned about. She said waiting another two weeks for the appointment is fine in her opinion because she really believes it's a benign lump. She said she thought back on all the lumps like this that she's seen and not one has turned out to be anything serious.

I asked her what she thought the ENT might do. She said that an ultrasound is a definite possibilty and maybe even a needle biopsy (but she didn't think he'd go this route). She said most likely, he'll wonder why she even sent us there, confirm it's normal, and send us on our way. That made me feel a little more reassured but I still want answers. I asked whether it was possible for the lymph node to still be inflamed since she hasn't been sick in over a week and she said 4-6 weeks is considered totally normal in kids.

So, keep Tate (and her neurotic mother) in your thoughts. I'm sure it's nothing, but I want something in writing, maybe even signed in blood or something, to confirm it.

Fashion Critic

When I got dressed this morning, I remembered that our new district manager is coming to our store for the first time today and my boss requested that we all dress "professionally and fashionably"-whatever that means.

I don't think I'm super fashionable, but not unfashionable either. I got some new clothes with Christmas money and have a few things that are more trendy and young than I normally wear so I threw one on this morning.

As I was standing in the mirror, thinking about how cute I thought I looked, the following happened:

Bella-"You're not really gonna wear that, are you?"
Me-"Wait, what?"
"Are you really wearing that? I don't think you should. I don't like it and I wouldn't wear it."
"Um, I thought I looked cute. And it's new. And I'm supposed to look fashionable today."
"I really don't like the colors."
"But it's cream and gray. Everyone likes that. And I really like gray."
"I'm not saying you have to wear all pink. Just that you shouldn't wear that."

Thanks for the advice.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Happy 6th Birthday Bella!

Hope that someday you'll enjoy the new bike you're currently too scared to ride.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Christmas Fun

Looks like we'll live

We've spent the last week sick. Like really, really sick. Steve and I are both hoping we had h1n1 so we don't feel like we endured a week of pure hell for nothing. Steve had to call in sick to work for the first time in years. I called in (twice!) for the first time ever. We didn't get out of our pj's for days and lived on a diet of gatorade. It was bad, bad, bad...and we're still not completely over it.