Hope you are doing well. Sorry to hear about the dx but the good news is that pap. carcinoma is very treatable! Seriously, I know you probably freaked out about the "C" word. I'm still a little wierd about it. A few words of wisdom (and I'm not sure how the Canadian health system works). I have fantastic health insurance so I was able to pick and choose treatments and doctors.
First, get an appoitment with a surgeon to schedule surgery. I had to wait about 4-5 weeks between the biopsy and surgery (which I hear is not too bad). Waiting stinks!. Anyway - most doctors here in the US including the ones I saw at John's Hopkins will want to do a total thyroid removal. I suggest taking the whole thing out especially if you have the radioactive iodine treamtment - but defer to your doctor. If you have pap cancer there is a 70% chance it will be throughout the thyroid. Ask about lymph node dissection since some of the cancer ususally (not all the time goes to a lymph node in the neck). Ask to see if your surgeon monitors your voice box nerves during surgery so they aren't damaged and monitors your brain level awareness during surgery. They all did that with mine.
Then ask about your parathyroid glands. Most people have between 4-5 but these suckers give you a hard time after surgery because they get bruised and lead to low calcium levels. Also, have a plan right after surgery/discharge to get you on some short acting thyroid meds like cytomel until you need to do the next step which is prepare for the ablation (killing of all remaining thyroid cancer cells).
That means you'll go on a low iodine diet, get some body scans, become really hypothyroid, and then get the I-131 treatment. Most of all have some really suportive people and family that can help. I was in the hospital overnight. I think the surgery is probably easier that the hysterectomy. Not too painful, but you'll definately need some help. I totally crashed mentally and physiologically afterward and can now laugh at the entire situation but you can feel like crap.
The staging will be done by the pathologists after the surgery. They initially read mine as pap. during the surgery and later staged it. I think I have Stage II (since it went to a node) and was multifocal (found throughout the gland). But the prognosis is still the same. I didn't need to see an oncologist since my endo is the head guy on the case and he is well renowned in the area.
Anyway, the key is to find a really good endo and surgeon!!!! The nuclear med people will work with the endo.
Last, do a google search about thyroid cancer survivors and you will pull up the US group that can help (if I write it here it will get zapped out). They are the ones that publish the low iodine diet. There are tons of sites to help. Keep in touch with people on this board as well.
Keep positive and stay in touch!