Vorfreude ("for-froi-da") is the joyful, intense anticipation that comes from imagining future pleasures, which, I am thrilled to report, is what this musing is all about. Yesterday I received scan results. I spent the morning breathing and balancing and breathing and balancing (like my elephant) and then the oncologist walked into the room and started reading the radiology report. The spot that was residual post German hyperthermia/chemotherapy was 19 SUV uptake before radiation is now 3.2 (normal is 2-3).
Well, that is pretty good, I guess.
Then she paused, and kept on reading the report.
You don't have to keep reading, feel free to stop anytime...A spot in my upper chest and something in my colon?! With SUVs of 4.5 and 6.2? BLAH!
She finishes and looks at me. "So we might want to get a CT scan to see exactly what is causing those areas of concern, and maybe a colonoscopy."
I miss Michigan where there is a computer in every room and you can scroll through the actual scan images.
"I am heading back to Germany after Thanksgiving for some hyperthermia to make my immune system wiggle, I can ask Herzog?"
"Yes, that would be good. Let us get his opinion on this."
PET scans don't tell you WHY things are active and churning through glucose, grrrrr.
"Is there anyway you could talk to the radiologist and get their ideas of what exactly is lighting up? I was really cold on Tuesday, I am wondering if brown fat might show up. I had that a few years ago on a scan."
"Sure, I will call them and get back to you tonight. Can I call you tonight?"
Yes, you can call me about this, the only thing I will be trying to digest today.
"Depending on what things show us I think we should consider doing Brentuximab ..." [Data, data, etc]
Eventually I left, went to the parking lot, had a good cry in the car, and drove home.
The day trickled on - all sorts of spinning thoughts, breathing, gratitude, and scratching of the dog.
Last night I missed the phone call, but here is what her phone message said.
#1 the spot of SUV activity they saw in the chest they think is a pulled muscle, because it is in the superficial layer of my body - not in the inner innards where the lymph nodes live.
#2 the spot of SUV noted in the colon is a bit of bowl that is doubled onto itself and has a bit of inflammation as a result.
#3 SUV of 3.2 is pretty close to normal for the radiated spot, and she would love to chat next week.
So I will call her after the weekend, get Herzog's opinion in Germany, but I am feeling a lot better about all of this. 3.2 to me is one infinitesimally petite bump over normal, so I am going to read that as normal.
Back to vorfreude! A word I just learned 10 minutes ago and that is SO perfect to frame this story - and extra bonus, it derives from the German!!