20 Feb


And so it begins again.   Another doctor’s office, another computer screen, another look at my scans, and another person tells me I probably have cancer.  WTF?  Those of you following this rollercoaster ride (by the way, I hate rollercoasters) know that I have been told that the mass in my chest was a cyst, then lymphoma, then a benign tumor.  You know that I wanted to see a surgeon to see if he could easily remove this thing from my chest and let me move on with my life.  

So I saw a surgeon.  Good guy…a Brooklyn native, trained in New York, but who’s been out here a long time.  He brings his dog to the office (which I really appreciate).  He’s very low key.  He’s won numerous awards for his surgery and compassion.  He’s even worked on folks from my museum—lots of them, actually.  And so his opinion matters….damnit!

After looking at my scans, the guy explained to me that my biopsies could not have been conclusive.  He believes he’s looking at cancer, likely lymphoma, and that there is only one way to know for sure…we need a lymph node…end of story.  He wants to do a procedure called a mediastinoscopy (if you can stomach it, here is a video of the procedure). Basically it’s an outpatient procedure (under general anesthesia) to remove some lymph nodes from your mediastinum (here’s the wiki entry on the mediastinum).  It’s invasive.  More invasive than I would like, but far less invasive than removing a big tumor from my chest.  Also, it is likely more conclusive….at least that’s what this guy says, and in fairness my oncologist would love to see this done, as well.  It might just end my rollercoaster ride, OR it can start a whole new one. 

I am not sure what to call this blog anymore.  When this journey began, the blog was called Cancer: My New Adventure.  Then, when it seemed that I did not have cancer, I changed it to Dodging Bullets.  But one of my Facebook friends, a long time family friend, had suggested another title, one that I think captures my condition and perhaps the human condition.  He suggested that I call the blog Limbo.  And I suspect it’s time to make a change.

I continue to feel fine, though perhaps more emotionally fragile than I felt even a few hours ago.  I continue to value and cherish the interest and concern of every one of you who reads this blog and supports me in this insanity (and even those who don’t read it).  And I continue to remain simultaneously confused, panicked, anxious, crazed, and cautiously optimistic.

As always….stay tuned.


9 Responses to “WTF?”

  1. tim February 21, 2014 at 2:55 am #

    How does he explain that you’re not having other symptoms?

    • erikgreenberg February 21, 2014 at 5:29 am #

      As with all of them, Tim, they shrug their shoulders and say…well some times you don’t get symptoms until later. Hence my extraordinary confusion and frustration.

      • Tim Decker February 23, 2014 at 3:15 am #

        I can only imagine Erik. I would be freaking completely out so the fact that I haven’t read about you on the internet only speaks to your level headedness. I’m sending the very best thoughts I can muster your way and I look forward to arguing with you about politics for many many many years to come.

      • erikgreenberg February 23, 2014 at 8:07 am #

        Thanks, Tim.  You’re support means more to me than you can imagine.


  2. advocare distributor February 21, 2014 at 5:01 am #

    Try this, change you diet. I don’t believe that there is a doctor that would tell you not to eat fruits and veggies for one month and see what his scans tell you. No processed foods, fast foods, or anything from a box. Chicken breasts (6oz), steak (8oz), salad (as much as you want), fruit (as much as you want) and veggies (as much as you want) for one month.

    Check out this blog on the idea

    Clifford Mitchem
    Advocare Distributor
    Nutrition + Fitness = Health

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