First and most importantly: I FINALLY talked to my doctor. They said that my tumor is either a teratoma (as they originally thought) or a Thymoma. Bad news: apparently neither one is cured by lollipops as requested in my last post. Good news: my doctor is recommending that I have surgery to remove it rather than Chemotherapy. The chemo would have made me miss less work, and I wouldn't have a scar (I think, unless they would have had to do surgery anyways), BUT it would have been toxic on my body and apparently put things in it that would have made my chances for Cancer much higher later in my life. So that is really, really great news for me. I have an appointment to consult with my Thoracic Surgeon in two weeks (the soonest he had an appointment) to go over details for the surgery and set up a date for it. I looked up Mediastinal Surgery yesterday and read that there are three different types of surgeries. The first one requires that they crack open your sternum to access the tumor and remove it. This is in cases of a "larger tumor," but I don't know what size they are talking about. The second type is where they crack one of my ribs to access the tumor. Again, this is for "larger tumors." The third surgery option would be an orthoscopic surgery, with three incisions made (which would mean less scarring). They would make one incision for the camera and two for tools to remove the tumor. This is the minimally invasive and obviously my first choice of surgery. I don't know if my tumor (which is about 7.5 x 3 cm) is a candidate for the orthoscopic surgery, but I'm really crossing my fingers on this one. Even with that surgery the hospital stay is about 1-3 days, with about a month to full recovery. I think I would be able to get back to work way sooner than that since my job is laid back, but I really don't know what to expect. Honestly my biggest fear is missing too much work- is that weird? I will be knocked out for my surgery, so I don't think that will be an issue unlike my biopsy where I was awake. They will give me drugs for the pain afterwards, so I'm not worried about that either. I am a little concerned because I think they have to collapse a lung in order to access my mediastinal cavity during surgery, but all in all I am not that freaked out by that either. I really just don't want to miss a bunch of work and be way behind on my bills and have my boss be clueless on how to do stuff in here. I suppose I could train a temporary replacement for while I'm out, like Jill did at her old job when she went on vacations. I don't know. Anyways- enough of that, I'll keep you posted in two weeks.