Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Good, bad, and fun stuff

First some good stuff - I am feeling great building back up my mileage and adding back in some intensity to my running. This morning's run was 13 miles total, with 4x2 mile repeats (two mile warm up, quarter mile rest intervals, two mile cool down). It was a tough workout (news flash- two mile repeats are LONG) but it was a mental and physical victory getting this one done on the treadmill and not slowing down or lowering the incline when things started to really hurt and burn.

There is nothing like the feeling after a tough workout. One of my favorite things about running is how you are continually able to redefine what you are capable of - what you can do. Putting in the work and feeling yourself getting faster, tougher, stronger, braver...it's awesome.

Now the not so good stuff - I got a call from the doctor today. I knew right away it wasn't good news, as he had said he would just send a letter with the biopsy results unless there was anything concerning.

It turns out that the polyps that were removed were precancerous (adenomas) although that wasn't the doctor's big concern. There was an area that he biopsied that he had told us about. He had thought it was an area that had been damaged from ischemia from running and was healing itself, and he had told us he wasn't worried about it. He biopsied it just to be sure, and it turns out that it too, was precancerous. Unlike the polyps, this area was not removed and from what I understand, the nature of it is more concerning.

I asked if there was anything to be done at this point and he said no. I asked if there was anything I should do differently or look out for and he said no. (He does not think that the runner's diarrhea has anything to do with this, and yes, the medicine still seems to really be helping with that). He said we would have to repeat the colonoscopy in no more than two years now, and he said, "You definitely have the gene."

He also said several times that he was completely shocked, and that I was very lucky I had had the colonoscopy done when I did and that we hadn't waited. In a way, you could say running may have literally saved my life.

My Dad had colon cancer in his mid-40's (now has a clean bill of health) and he went to the best doctors in NYC, so I will talk to him and see what his advice is, and I am also seeing my family doc to see if he recommends anything other than waiting another 18-24 months and repeating the colonoscopy.

To be 100% clear, I do NOT have colon cancer. I feel great (better than ever). I am in amazingly good health. I just have a warning sign that we are going to need to watch and monitor carefully. It's not the news I wanted, but I am grateful I am aware of it and can be proactive.

Now to end on a much more fun note - here is a big smile for you. It was crazy hair day at our elementary school today. Marcus and Shorty were both LONG overdue for a haircut, so they asked if we could give them fun haircuts for crazy hair day. Here is what Josh did!

I pity the fool!!!  
After school I buzzed them nice and smooth. :) Could they be any cuter??

More soon.


Raina said...

I am so glad you went in for the running-related issues. What a blessing that this was caught when it was so that you can keep track of things. Also a blessing that your dad is a survivor and can help guide you to some good health care.
I am sure that the workout felt fantastic!! Nothing like a little speed work :)

Your boys are adorable with the MrT hair cuts! haha. And I would have shaved them clean right after as well. My middle son wanted a mullet last time, but i was not going for it!

coach dion said...

So even with the hair cut, the kids look just like you!!!

Keep running, and enjoy those days when it's good, I love it when the hard session work and as scary as the program looks you can still finish the session...

christa said...

Your kiddos are super cute!!

misszippy said...

Just got the chills thinking about how running came into your life for a reason! So glad you got that colonoscopy--you will be fine now that you can stay on top of it. I really look at this is good news--it is saving you from an awful disease!

The boys are adorable!

Hanneke said...

I am in the exact same position as you are. I got my first colonoscopy in my 30's with the same outcome as you. I lost my mother due to colon cancer at a very young age.

BUT I am in my late 40's now and have colonoscopies every 5 years. Nothing has changed since that first colonoscopy for me. Actually the pre cancerous areas have slightly improved.

It's good that you see this as a positive thing because it is. Now you can take action, and there is a lot you can do!

Jen@runfortheboys said...

Every single thing in life happens for a reason! This sounds weird to say but I am thankful you had stomach problems when you run because otherwise this would have likely been full blown cancer by the time you had a colonoscopy. Admire your practical attitude and am praying for good medical decisions and proactive steps to keep you healthy!

Jen@runfortheboys said...

AND, love the boys' cuts. You and Josh are super cool parents :-)

Lisa@The Daily RUNdown said...

Hi Erin,
I don't comment on blogs a whole lot, I'm a typical creeper!
But I had to tell you, that your outlook is so amazing and positive it radiates through your words in each and every blog post. I know you get this a lot, but I just had to reiterate, you are superwoman!!!
The way you handle your family, running, and all of your other 1 million obligations is commendable. Thank you for writing this blog, honestly, candidly, and from the heart. It really displays the kind of person you are and the kind of person we all need to strive to be!

fancy nancy said...

Oh my word I love the Mr.T look!! Erin I am so sorry about what was found from the tests but what a blessing to have found out early! I will be praying not only for wisdom in how to proceed but for healing...that that gene would be taken away!!!

Amy N. said...

They are so adorable! What a perfect time for crazy hair day to come when they need a haircut anyway!

What a blessing that you got the test when you did! It's hard news to hear, but to know in time is worth it! I hope your heath continues to be excellent and everything goes well (or stops well, depending on if you're trying to run or not)!

{lifeasa}RunningMom said...

Love the crazy hair!

And yes, it is amazing how sometimes something bad turns out giving us something valuable. It is always better to know what is going on and to know what to watch out for.

Take care!

giraffy said...

Those kids are hilarious.

It's fantastic that you're being proactive on this, and taking control of your well-being.

Annie Crow said...

The kids are adorable.

Love your attitude re: the health stuff.

I also have something that is also clearly a genetic thing affecting my whole family... and also, through a running-related visit, is finally getting monitored the way it should be. Yet another reason to sing running's praises, as I know you have.

Keep us posted, yes?

Gracie said...

I love love love the hair - how cute can you get?!
You know, it seems strange to say it, but your runner's GI issues really ended up being a blessing. You got an early screening, and now that you know to watch, you will be much safer and healthier. Blessings in disguise!

Christina Williams said...

As someone who has gone through a "pre-cancer-scary-sounding" (don't know how to word that better) health scare two years ago, I know all the thoughts and emotions that can occur. Bottom line - we are all doing good to keep up on our health and fitness and the running will really be so helpful. It will carry us a LONG way into our olden years. Also, the majority of these situations always stay just as they are - precautions and nothing more (that's my latest mantra from my internist, we're young and healthy!) :) Many hugs!

Kathy said...

I am so glad that you have found this early and are now aware and keep an eye on it. I love the way God works. I was also glad to hear in your last post that your medicine is working for your GI issues when running. Finally, those boys are adorable... I can't believe how BIG they are getting!! :)

Diana Martinez said...

"I pity the fool!" <-- totally cracked me up. What an adorable picture.

As for the rest... Ugh. =( Early detection is good, and hopefully it'll will all turn out to be nothing, or at least something that can be taken care of. Cancer sucks. I know that sounds glib, but I've been surrounded by so much of it that I really can't say any more at this point. It just sucks, sucks, suckity sucks.

Christy @ My Dirt Road Anthem: A Runner's Blog said...

so glad you caught it early! another score for running.
Those boys are so cute!