Today, as I was winding down day 3 of living with my new status of "cleared to return to life as normal" with sensitivity towards my bodies signs and signals, I heard my phone ring. At a glance, it was not a number I recognized, but I felt I should answer it, which I did, and when I did, there was no one there.
Call it spotty receptions, or bad cell service... I answered and said hello three times, and when no one responded I hung up.
I went back to what I was doing, which was nothing but puzzling (for you that are concerned) and within 10 minutes got another call from the same number, which I thought was odd... however, I found myself reaching out and grabbing the phone to answer yet again.
Anyone that knows me, knows that every time my phone rings from an unknown number, I wage war within myself regarding to answer or not to answer...
I say, "Hello?" and the voice on the other end asks if this is Michelle. I respond, "yes, Michelle Lingle, how can I help you?" The voice identifies himself as my surgeon and asks if I have a few minutes to talk. I respond that I do.
Again, for those of you that know me, you know that I do not google things, disorders, people etc and throughout this entire discovery/testing/surgical removal of the growth in the right side of my thyroid, I never googled a thing!
I proceeded to and through each step of the process with the facts that were presented, trusting the team that was leading me through this process to be informed and capable of doing their jobs. Trusting that the Lord, who is the author of my life, to give me wisdom and direction regarding the decisions that needed to be made at each juncture in the journey.
I am not going to lie, after my follow up this week with the surgeon, who if you did not see my post, was thrilled with my progress, it really sunk in how young he looked. So when I got home I googled him to find out a bit more about him. While he is a Harvard Medical School graduate, he has been a practicing surgeon for less than three years!
Yikes, I let someone young enough to be one of my children cut into my neck... but was quickly reminded of this scripture 1Timothy 4:12:
"Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity."
This man, my surgeon, was compassionate, kind, genuine, thorough, gracious, gentle, truthful, and informative. Everything you would want your surgeon to be! Regardless of his age!
Sorry...back to the point of his phone call.
Pathology results were in, and did I have a minute to discuss the findings with him?
I asked him if I should sit down. He sort of chuckled and said, "you can sit or stand... your preference. "
He proceeded to say that he had just received my pathology reports, and was thrilled to report to me that my large tumor was NOT CANCER!
To say that my emotions did not over take me, would simply be a lie. The sweeping wave of relief, was followed quickly by a wave of disbelief leading to my request for him repeat the findings a second time, followed rapidly by more relief which caused me to sob out a choked "Praise the Lord!" His response? A hearty "AMEN"!
He continued to reiterate that he was so happy that we had decided to remove only the right half of my thyroid vs the whole thyroid, which had been my initial response to the tumor. In full disclosure, he told me that one of my four parathyroid glands were lost in the surgical process. Again, I only need one of those to produce my bodies required calcium and I still have three.
More findings showed that inside the right side of my thyroid, there was a minuscule (under 3mm in size) nodule that was identified as cancerous, but because its whole being was removed, I am considered cancer free! No further testing or monitoring needed!
I am only seeing a win, win, win!
So for all of you that prayed, encouraged and prayed some more...Thank you from the depths of my heart. The Prince and I are humbled to be loved by each of you! We are grateful for this clean bill of health and the peace of mind that this news brings.
As I prepared to hang up with the surgeon, I shared with him from my heart. I told him that both the Prince and I were so impressed with his manner, care and follow through in regards to how he guided us and helped us make decisions along the way, with the baffling information that testing had provided.
While I am more than overcome with joy that I DO NOT have to do this entire procedure again in 8 weeks, I know that I would have been most comfortable with him repeating the process, after going through it this first time with him.
I did joke with him, that it would have taken a large amount of "happy pills" and excessive persuasiveness to actually get me back in that operating room, and expressed again my great joy in not having to do so!
He thanked me for my kind words. He told me that I made his week with my words of appreciation. He told me to have a great weekend.
What he did not realize is that he delivered to me the greatest birthday gift every. Monday I turn 51. What more could a girl ask for? A clean bill of health? For sure!!! Yea me!
The Prince said a few months ago when the wheels started falling off my bus, that I should not be discouraged. This was just a middle of the journey, "check engine light" that came on. I needed to spend part of this 50th year of life, caring for myself, so that I could be "tuned up" and ready for the next 50 years!
This is part of my story. Part of who I am. I recognize that this situation could have gone in a completely different direction. I was prepared for that. I prayed for the this! I am humbled to have been spared another surgery, radiation, isolation during that time, and a daily medication regime.
You really can't make this stuff up... and for that I am exceptionally grateful! Rejoicing in answered prayers ! Happy Happy Birthday to me!