Friday, March 12, 2010

Thyroidectomy and Country Music

I went for my biopsy follow-up yesterday. While waiting to be roomed I sat there thinking about the last year. Since I turned 40 I feel like I've slowly been falling apart. Aches, pains, high blood pressure, gaining weight... the list goes on. Last year I decided to at least be a better diabetic. Well, this really only entails my taking the medication the doctor prescribed, but that's a start, right?

Each morning at work I take out my little purple pill holder that Robin fills each week with all of my prescriptions. We've got a diabetic pill, 2 glucosomine and chondroitin OTC horse pills, blood pressure pill, cholesterol pill, a pill that keeps me from killing people... I think there's one more but I can't think of it right now. I put the pills on my desk as my morning ritual and Clancy (the girl that sits behind me) usually says something like "Dang, girl! What are you?? 80??" I complain about all the prescriptions daily as I hate taking pills. I was totally non-compliant for the longest time. I'm trying to be better about being compliant. I'm trying to be well.

I was finally put in an exam room after an hour and a half wait. I think the room was actually made for children because it had this God awful mural in it. It's a jungle scene with a monkey... the monkey has a purse for his bananas. That amused me.

When Dr. McNellis finally came in we talked about the nodule and my biopsy results. I asked him how he went from the nodule in the back of my neck to my thyroid. The connection didn't make sense to me. He told me that the nodule is something to watch carefully but from what the CT said it isn't big enough to cause worry... yet. He said when they did the CT he saw the calcifications in my thyroid and that is why he ordered the biopsy. He said they were big enough to see and that was a concern.

The cells from the biopsy were atypical which, of course, is not normal. He said that he could do more invasive studies but what he recommends is to do a partial thyroidectomy so we will not have to worry about it in the future. During the procedure he will take the thyroid and do a frozen biopsy of it while I am still under. If the pathologist says it's cancer he will then take the other half out. He explained that if it's only one half I can live without taking any additional medications, however, if they take the whole thing out I will have to take something along the lines of synthroid as well as calcium for the rest of my life.

I kind of knew that this was going to be the news I would hear today so I wasn't really freaked out. He said recovery time would be 4-7 days and that I should plan to stay overnight in the hospital but he may surprise me and send me home. I've never stayed (as a patient) overnight in the hospital so this will be a new experience for me. We scheduled the surgery for April 5th at St. Francis.

This past weekend was a clash of cultures! Friday night we had tickets to see Henry Rollins. I was really looking forward to this since I've long admired him but have never seen him live. For the past several years he's been doing spoken word. The show was absolutely intense and nothing short of amazing. In the words of my good friend, Devin:

he basically came out at 8:15pm, stepped up to the mike, and started talking, and didn't stop ... until almost 11pm. He didn't take a sip of water, barely paused between subjects, which went from American history, to the differences in the grasp of the English language between Obama and Bush (one of my fave quotes of the night was that Obama "speaks in perfect, upppercase Hellvetica font), to why he hates Thanksgiving and texting, to being friends with William SHatner, to seeing the punk band Bad Brains for the first time, to starring in the TV series Son of Anarchy, to traveling the world. He bounced around subjects like a pinball, and the nearly three hours flew by. It was one of the more amazing performances I've seen onstage, music or otherwise. He also keeps it very democratic. For instance, he obviously doesn't like Rush Limbaugh, but he definitely stands up for the guy's right to be on the radio, no matter what he says. He is totally against racism and most other isms, but he plays a white supremacist on Sons of Anarchy, and explained why he chose to do so.

Devin, me, Robin, Steven (Robin's brother) and Karen

Devin is a freelance writer and his official review of Rollins was in Charleston Scene's online edition as well a fabulous photo by your truly! Did you see that photo credit? I'm a star!!

On Saturday night it was, well... totally different from Friday! We had an offer for free concert tickets to see Brad Paisley and Miranda Lambert at the coliseum. I knew that Robin really liked Paisley (and country music) so I agreed to go. I've never been a big country fan. There are a few country artists that I enjoy like Darius Rucker (Duh, I live in Charleston!) and Sugarland. The only country concert that I've seen was outside at the fairgrounds. It was redneck land from hell.

After parking in BFE we made it inside to find out that we had amazing seats! We were in the 4th row just above the risers. The crowd was very into their country thing and I very much felt like a minority. I'm glad we weren't in a section where people were being obnoxious. It was actually a pretty laid back section because of the location of the seats. We could either stand or sit and either way we had a great view. I enjoyed both shows, especially Miranda Lambert. I really liked her hair... I'm thinking of getting a cut now!

I was really surprised at the production that went into Paisley's show. I think most of the time he was preforming I was watching the videos on the big screens behind him!

This coming weekend my friend Jimmy is coming to visit from Greenville. Saturday night we are going to Hyman's (his request) and then to The Treehouse reunion at Club Pantheon. The Treehouse was a club in Charleston that we practically lived at about 15 years ago. Back then I worked a 4-12pm shift and would bring a change of clothes with me. After my shift I would make a quick change and head out. After a night of dancing we would go for breakfast and sometimes head to the beach to watch the sun rise. This was practically every night! There's no way I could do that these days. I'm really looking forward to hearing the old tunes from the club - DJ Jesse is spinning! as well as seeing some familiar faces!


Clytie said...

Oh man, I hardly know what to say. My prayers are with you and your health ... and your surgery. I'm glad you're taking your meds! Since my stroke in December I'm on daily 'cations for the first time in my life and it's hard.

And I will say it again - I love your writing style. I loved your descriptions of Henry Rollins and the concert you went to.

Cool pics, too!

Joan said...

Okay, April 5th. Got it this time!

Dr. McNellis is very good so hopefully everything will go smoothly.

Did you take the performers photos? They are great.

Pamela said...

The only surgery I've ever had is carpal tunnel and laser ablation for a kidney stone so I'm a little apprehensive about all of this. I'm really trying not to think about it until the time comes!

Thanks Clytie! I think I write how I speak... just kind of type as it comes to me :)

Joan... yes, I did take the photos of the concerts and most everything on my blog. Your compliment means a lot to me since I know what a good eye you have!

Beth Niquette said...

Wow--I read about your upcoming surgery and I wanted you to know I'm praying for ya.

My youngest sister's husband Brian is having knee surgery that day, too.

Take care, my talented friend.

And as Sissy Clytie says, good girl for taking your meds!!!