Newly Diagnosed

I found out I have papillary thyroid cancer two days ago. For the last year, I've had swollen lymph nodes. One in particular in the back of my neck has been swollen and causing me pain before my period. I don't know if it's related to the cancer yet, but my gut thinks it is. My doctor couldn't feel the lymph nodes but had an ultrasound done. They told me the lymph nodes were benign. Later on, I went in for a pap smear.  After the pap, my doctor conducted a routine physical and felt a lump on my thyroid. She said it could also just be a lymph node and that it was probably nothing, but sent me to have an ultrasound. At the ultrasound, I had the same person who had done my neck earlier. They rudely asked if I had found another lump or if my doctor had found it. They seemed to think my complaining of my lymph node and neck earlier was psychological. She did find the node though and became quiet. A few days later my doctor called me and told me that based on the ultrasound I needed to have a biopsy done. I had to go to a different medical center to do the biopsy. They were very nice and told me everything they were doing. It was an ultrasound guided biopsy and the doctor collected material three times. It was a little painful but not that bad. I went to work after it was done. After the biopsy, even though I was told I had a 90% chance of being fine, I had a feeling I would be part of the 10% with other results. My intuitive feelings are usually right, so I ended up researching thyroid cancer and learned it's very treatable. My thyroid nodule is very small, about 1.7cm which means it is probably caught early. Two days later my doctor called and said she had set up an emergency appointment for me. I knew then that I had it. My parents knew too but they pretended they didn't. My mom drove me to the appointment. My doctor told me I had thyroid cancer. I think my doctor was more upset and surprised than I was. I had a gut feeling that I had it, but I also have a gut feeling I'll survive and be fine, so I didn't really get upset. I haven't cried about it yet. I went to work yesterday and was pretty shell shocked I guess. I work in a restaurant and kept messing up orders and being unusually slow. I told my boss after my shift was over. I haven't told my other coworkers yet. I'm not sure if my boss told them or not. I don't really know what to say to them. I drove really crappy and recklessly yesterday. It makes me scared to drive. My dad and brother won't look at me. My mom is the only one treating me normally. I'm really worried about paying for everything and how this will affect my ability to work and go to class. I will take everything one step at a time I guess. I don't know what else to do. 
alien3starr alien3starr
3 Responses Feb 4, 2012

I got diagnosed today. Got that emergency phone call, like you two days ago. Like you, I knew my fate. Still, hearing it, been shell shocked ever since, dazed, confused and balled a few times. My doc said straight up the thyroid has to go. I see a surgeon next week. I posted it on Facebook asking for help and guidance. Got allot of encouragement, encouraging stories from others that have gone through this or had children, family that have, etc. it's been a blessing. Got lots of information and questions to ask. I got links to online support groups via Facebook. I joined immediately. The more knowledge I gain, the more open I am, the more love, wisdom and blessings I will receive. I am 50, ( still cool though, lol) lots older then you so maybe it's just easier to reach out. Please do the same for are worth it. Talk to your family, don't stuff feelings. Good luck honey....

Thank you kylie7733!!! You have helped me to feel better. I was pretty shell shocked for the first two weeks after. I mean, I'm only 25!!! Since then I have gotten more used to the diagnosis. I've been working extra hours recently to save up money for my health care. I will also take time off work and take the semester off from school. I've been trying to spend more time with my family. My surgery will be in three weeks. I have a lot of faith in my doctors so I know they will take good care of me.

I think you should take some YOU time, to take it in, cope and take care of you. This is a very scary thing for all of us and no one is going to understand the way you do. You need to let people know you need them to be there for you. As for school, I recently withdrew for the semester because I knew I was going to have an upcomming surgery ect. And you will most certaintly have to miss work but you WILL BE OKAY and people WILL help guide you through it all. There is a very good outcome for thyroid you know so try to kick that part right out of your brain (Trust me, I know...easier said than done.) Focus on getting through it with and the end result will be amazing. I pray for you girl! I too, am in the same position. Keep us updated!