Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Moderately high CEA

I'm bumming out.

One of my lovely oncologists called today. Sigh. My first impulse is to hope for good news, but, thankfully, my doctors get quickly to the point and I don't have to hope for long. My CEA is moderately high at 5.7.

CEA levels are tested through a blood test, and I didn't pay much attention to this number in the past. Thank goodness for Google; I learned that normal for a non-smoker is < 2.5 ng/ml (don't know what ng stands for). My doctors feel anything below 3.4 is good.

My white counts have gone low again, too.

I hung up the phone and cried.

Then, life continues. The phone rang again. I thought it was the doctor with more news. But, it was a friend. We hadn't talked in awhile and she was on her way to pick up her kids, with a few minutes to spare. When she innocently asked how I was doing, I burst into tears again. But I have to admit, it felt so good to talk with her. I am grateful that she acted on her inspiration to call me at that moment. It was just what I needed.

Connecting with Susan gave me energy to take the boys and do some retail therapy at Winston's Flowers. A few containers, plants, and flowers later, I felt a bit vindicated. The boys had a great time playing in the water fountains and were soaked through. They wanted to ride home naked. Fine with me.

When I drove up to the dock to load my purchases into the car, the saleswoman marveled at my calm. If only she knew.

I'm getting re-tested next week and hoping this is all just a fire drill.

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