It started about a year ago. Small and just under the skin of the inside of my left index finger, the size of a pea, I'd guess.
I'd forget all about it, and then something would shift and I'd notice this little thing. Either I'd be out for a walk pushing Ben in the stroller and that spot would end up irritated, or I'd be driving and the same spot would push against the steering wheel.
I thought it was nothing, a cyst. I mentioned it to my doctor when I had my annual last spring. He dismissed it, probably just a cyst, he said. If it gets in the way, let us know and we can refer you to a hand guy.
Months went by, and it got a little bigger, maybe then the size of a single edamame bean. Still it didn't hurt, only occasionally got in the way.
Summer, it was large, obvious. Chickpea.
One day, I was walking with Claire and she began to cry, telling me that she didn't want to hold that hand because my lumpy finger made her feel sad. (That was hard. I have some arthritis in the other hand, and it often hurts to hold hands for extended periods.)
Finally, I went to a doctor, the lump is the size of two chickpeas now, fills the entire first joint of my index finger. You can see it from the back of my hand, this thing. X-Rays.
Not a cyst.
No, nothing terrible. While there are some forms of hand cancer, this isn't one of them. What I have is a Giant Cell Tumor of the Tendon Sheath. And it's coming out.
Wish me luck. (I hadn't written any of this down yet, and want to document the process, both the surgery and the recovery.)