Monday, September 20, 2010


Well, I thought it wouldn't come but it did and boy, am I glad that's over and now I wait.....for the results......hate this part. It's funny how they do things at the hospital, they want your patient confidentiality, "stand behind this sign to ensure the patient has privacy...." how is that private? When I finally found where I needed to be I checked in trying to talk quietly so not everyone could hear me, and you have someone at the desk who is chipper and sweet (two attributes I love), but a little hard in hearing. By the time I was done I think everyone watiting knew what I had, how I had it, and if I ate my wheaties this morning.

So, I fill out some forms, first question: Why are you here?

Really, you are asking me that, are you sure I can trust you with this test, why are you asking me, shouldn't you already know. Red flags are everywhere.....

And love this question - Are you pregnant?

Does anyone else find this question terribly stupid? Why no, I just took my pregnancy test before I came in and there was only one line, we are in the clear. I don't use birth control and have sex, so the possibility is there. I have learned to stifle this answer because it freaks everyone out. I get this blank stare of confusion, and then, "so, are you pregnant, or was that a no?" So I said no to just get on with the questions.

While I am sitting there a woman comes in, probably about my age, maybe even younger. She wants to know if an MRI has been ordered for her. The boy behind the counter (and that is what he is) asks her name and what it is for. She gives her name but is hesitant to say why for all of our ears are in the waiting room and we all have our limits on our sense of modesty. And she says what I am least expecting, "It is for a brain tumor, and since I am just getting out of the hospital I thought I would come and check if OHSU had sent in the order."

"And I, just, have breast cancer?" was my first thought. It always could be worse, right? I feel as if this woman were planted for me to realize not to feel sorry for myself and play the 'why me' game, when there are things to be thankful for. What a powerful message.

So on to the MRI... "Stephanie?"

Sonja has now come out to get me, here is my room, my clothes to put on, and locker for my stuff. The restroom is right here and I should try and use it before we go in. This is all very normal like any other procedure. Sonja starts the IV for the dye to see the blood stream better and we head into the room.

"Oh my gosh this is wonderful!" I think I scared Sonja clear out of her size one pants. I walked in to find a padded "bed" with a neck rest like you would find at the chiropractor or while having a massage. I wouldn't have my neck on the side the entire time and hate life when it was done. I explained to her my unrest with the whole concept since my biopsy was so awful laying on my stomach with my neck turned..... Sonja felt sorry for me and said she would look into that and see about getting it changed. Yeah, yeah, Sonja sure you will, but it is a great thought you are going to go to bat for me and others, and the dreaded biopsy table.

The picture: Laying face down, two holes for the breasts to just fall through (terrific!), arms above the head, head in the rest, pillow under the feet, and tune in the head.....She tells me to just lay still, it will be over soon, and if I needed anything to squeeze the ball in my left hand. Now the cool part is when you put your face down there is some kind of mirror you look through and can see her the entire time, your hands above your head and and any other movements outside the tube. Kind of nice to not feel so closed in.

Now I don't know if anyone out there has had an MRI but they really are not that fun, and I don't care if you have a different opinion. So she comes on loud speaker in the tube with, "Here is the first one, it is a minute." I am thinking awesome, these are only minute long scans this is great, I can get through a minute without totally moving. WRONG.... We go to the next one - 4 minutes long, and the next - 3 minutes long and we go back and forth with this stupid game and all you hear is the buzzing and loud sounds the machine makes. Oh, yes, you have ear plugs, but really, what are they supposed to do again? I think they forgot how to do their job of blocking out sound. The entire time I lay there listening to the god awful sounds in a not so great position, I remind myself over and over, "I have control of me, no one else controls my thoughts, just relax, take control of yourself in the situation, control breathing..... I have control of me......"

But here comes my favorite part, she prefaces it really well, but gets you with the sinker, "Stephanie you are doing really great only a few more left. So we have three left and these are THE MOST IMPORTANT. We will be shooting the dye into you now, it is imperative you hold very still. These are the images we really need."

Are you kidding me, you tell me this now after I just sat through 10 others that now these are the most important and this is the time I want to move and re-adjust the most, "This one is 3 minutes," she says, "it is going to start in 30 seconds......" BUZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.......

"Alright, now the this next one is 5 and a half minutes, and so very important you lay completely still. Doing great." I know in the real world five minutes is small potatoes but in the MRI reality, it is a freaking long time. Who wants to lay still that long? And lastly, "ok, this one is only two minutes. You are doing great!" The jeopardy song is now playing in my mind.

So, I wait.....for the results......I hate this part, but......"I have control of me, no one else controls my thoughts, just relax, take control of yourself in the situation, control breathing..... I have control of me......"

I wait.

No comments:

Post a Comment