How it all started – Finale

My tough adventure continued.

After I finally came to the Hospital K (you can find in Part IV), and the nice nurse made it happened that I saw my husband that late at night, he brought me some stuff from home, even though I received everything possible from the hospital at the moment. We talked for some time, I brought him up to speed as much as I could, we separated till morning.

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My state was still of absolute shock and lack of understanding of what was going on with me. I was in a hospital gown with lots of cords coming out of me, three of them at least connected to some bags, not in a way you’d think they would, they appeared to be to the cuts under the lungs and the heart sack for collecting the rest of the liquids, and some to this beeping machine, I saw in the movies before %). Meanwhile, nurses brought me some broth and tea, and a small sandwich and tried to persuade me to have at least some.

Later, when I ate some broth, seeing that I was still in the complete state of loss, nurses tenderly but firmly helped me to get to sleep, and repeated many and many times (and were right to do so) to call them. Call them if I need to stand up or to go to the toilet or if I’m thirsty, or need anything at all. Because it worked and even in my groggy painful state during my sleep that night, I remembered asking them for help.

In the morning I had a chance to finally look around and see, where I was. The room was quite spacious with my medical bed and a type of “medical” table beside it. There was a nice area with the light azure armchair with footrest and an extra chair. And there was some cabinet, which appeared to be the extra bed later. The windows were huge, almost wall-size, and the ceiling was quite high too. There was a door, which I knew was a bathroom after the last night. Everything looked perfect and clean and shiny.

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How it all started – IV

So, we are coming to the point little by little. I was holed up in the StG Hospital for hours now, with nobody knowing what’s going on with me, and keeping me under quarantine, just in case. How my journey started and how I get here you can read in previous parts 123.

psfix_20190310_1948191240344933405517803.jpegLate in the evening, a nurse came in and said that finally X-Ray department has found a drop-in time to do a CT, – that’s what we’d been waiting for, I realized! And arriving there in my cot, I saw the previous patient being driven out. So obviously, the schedule was tight.

It was the first time, I have ever had a CT scan, and I saw the equipment! For me, it was not scary, more like very interesting! They gave me an intravenous contrast, which felt really hot in some places, hmm, fun! And I do not remember now how much of the scan they did, but it was head and thorax and may be abdominal area too.

After the CT, I got back to my really comfortable quarantine. To wait some more. Finally, a couple of doctors came and took ECG, and it seemed that they didn’t like it much. Because they came back with an ultrasound machine and did the ultrasound on my heart and I remember the main doctor saying “Here, the dancing heart”. I didn’t quite understand what it meant, but after that, the world around me changed from slow-mo and waiting all the time to rushing forward on high speed.  Continue reading

How It All Started – III

It was quite difficult to be “me” recently, but I’m trying to continue writing in the moments I feel able to express myself better.

Anyway, I need to continue and finish as soon and possible this story of my diagnosis, and here you can find previous Parts 1 and 2.

So, there was I in the StG hospital in the center of Stockholm. To tell the truth, I had never seen such a big medical institution before (Little did I know at that time about the new hospital which had just been built in Stockholm!). It took some time before my husband and I found the registration, even with all the helpful infographics. There I gave a letter from my doctor from Vardcentral and I was allowed into the waiting area. As appeared, despite me having an appointment from the other doctor, I had to wait in an emergency area for a couple of hours. My husband had to go at this point. By that time, I already had troubles breathing again, and what’s worse! – my mobile was running out of battery! )))))

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How it all started – II

So, after the long and unsuccessful fighting with “a cough”, and even more unsuccessful visit to the doctor, which I told about in Part 1, I finally went to see the doctor for the second time.

To my surprise, it went much better and my illness was taken seriously this time. Maybe because the wheezing sounds in my chest became unmistakably audible, or the fact that I finally get a fever once, but the doctor saw that I have problems breathing, and checked the volume of my lungs by making me exhale as strongly as I can in a special tube, which even with all my force appeared to be too small for the grown women, though the saturation of oxygen in my body was quite well. As a next step, he sent me to some inhalation procedure, that helped to open the bronchi and ease the breathing. The inhalation actually made it much easier for me to breathe, but the lung volume didn’t increase too much afterward. So I got some prescriptions for respiratory anti-inflammatory medicine, or something like that and went back.

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How it all started – I

I want to tell you about how everything has started for me, please keep in mind, though it may seem that you have some similar symptoms, please do not think immediately that you have the same thing, I’m pretty sure that you are alright! We all are different and I just was dealt quite a bad hand there.  

It started somewhere in the middle of April 2018 – this terrible cough that didn’t want to leave me alone. Like, at all. At first, I didn’t pay any attention to it, it was just beginning of the spring and all usual seasonal running nose and some cough, who would even think twice? But I started to feel kind of irritated by it, so I tried some simplest treatments, from just warm drinks to some mints and Strepsils and even Terracough – I  even think that I went through 3 or 4 bottles of that stuff, trying to cough out something sitting in my chest. That should have been enough, right? But the cough just didn’t leave me alone! At some point, my husband became quite disgruntled with constant day and night coughing for almost 3 weeks and sent me to see the doctor.  

My first visit to Vardcentralen (health center in Sweden) was pretty much dull and uneventful, as I expected.  The doctor asked what was my problem, and since I had no fever, no any evident problems with health or other symptoms, nothing apart from this stupid-stupid cough, he said that it will pass naturally soon enough and sent me on my way. Right? I was a little bit humiliated for having gone to the doctor with a common cold and upset that I had to wake up so early in the morning to get there, and very much angry on my own body for behaving this way. Therefore I decided to go all nuclear on my cold with some more traditional home-style treatments. OMG, I even gargled my throat with iodine and soda, and rinsed the nose from mucous with salty water (I can’t even express how much I hate this procedure from my childhood, I have no idea still how did I make myself to do this then, but I did, so desperate was I.). I bought stronger expectorant medicine from bronchitis, though it didn’t help to get rid of the mucous I felt in my throat. IT WAS ON!

Few more weeks passed.

But nothing helped. NOTHING! AT! ALL!

My overall condition got worse. I was always tired from coughing and not being able to sleep well at nights. Nevertheless, I tried to continue working and had to carry a lot of the photography equipment with me. Before on some small assignments, I didn’t take the car, but now, I even asked my husband to take me and even carry the equipment to the door!  I struggled for breath with every move, it’s hard to remember now how I gradually became so much worse, but I was working, and I got some new clients I didn’t want to cancel, and I almost didn’t have any fever.

One more month passed for sure, then already all my friends wondered, why am l so ill still? My husband was really worried, as an only person witnessing my problems with breathing in my sleep, and basically breathing at all. The sounds in my chest became so loud, that I imagine now our neighbors were able to hear me wheezing while breathing in my sleep )))) Still I didn’t want to go to the doctor again, because I was afraid the doctor would see the situation in the same light…

To be continued…

Next parts are: 2, 3, 4

Hello, I’m…

Hello,

I’m Velveteen Cat, and I have a lung cancer.

Well, I do sound like at an AA meeting. But I’m anonymous in a way and with a big problem, right?

I was diagnosed with cancer in the spring last year 2018, I was 31… For some time I was taking notes like a diary for myself. And I was thinking and hesitating if I should share my journey and tell how it all started for me, how is it going, what am I going through and maybe just some thoughts and reflections. It was a really hard decision to make for me, but here it is. I will start from the beginning, and move from there, but I’m afraid that I won’t be able to have everything in the right order, so I’ll probably mix some past time entries with what’s going on right today. Hope it won’t be too confusing.

Oh, and I wanted to say, that English is not my native language, and I do hope it won’t be an issue.