Scanxiety

With this diagnosis, there have been many tests.  First there was the mammogram, a biopsy, MRI, fetal screenings, and most recently, weekly blood draws.  It is common to undergo PET and or CT scans with a cancer diagnosis, but since I was pregnant those tests were not an option.   With each kind of test there is a tiny bit of concern, when I was pregnant it was always hoping that lil’ bit was healthy in there, and with each blood lab, hopes that my white blood cell counts are okay and my iron, because iron infusions are not fun.

When my oncologist originally scheduled my PET scan I didn’t think much about it.  I was more concerned about how claustrophobic I’d feel in the machine.  As the appointment date approached, little gremlins of doubt started to visit.  What if that pain in your toe isn’t really because you clipped it on the couch?  Did you just cough, could it be in your lungs?  Is your vision in your right eye blurry, that surely has nothing to do with you putting glasses on and forgetting that you didn’t take your right contact out?  What if you light up like a Christmas tree?   Naturally, I did my best to combat these thoughts with scripture and lots and lots of prayer.  I felt mostly confident that everything was going to be okay, but my mind told me it was foolish not to “consider” the possibilities.

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The day of my PET scan my mind was preoccupied with the passing of my aunt, the plan was to head out of town for the services as soon as the scan was finished.  The nuclear tech came out to meet me and saw Yuri and Dave in the waiting area.  “Uhm, ma’am let’s have a talk.”  He very graciously told me that he was not comfortable administering the test, and that he couldn’t believe the pre-lab information didn’t say anything about being around children.  Basically, the injection used to highlight any cancer cells on the scan, turns me into a walking Chernobyl for 6 plus hours.

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I thanked him for the heads up and rescheduled for another date so that I could make arrangements to be away from the  house so I wouldn’t contaminate lil’ bit.  To my chagrin, on my second attempt there was a snafu with the insurance, so no scan that day.  I was told not to eat 5 hours prior to the scan, so I got that news while hangry.  I kept it together and rescheduled for a 3rd attempt.

Finally about a week ago, I was past the registration desk, insurance verified, waiting for the nuclear tech to take me back.  The injection takes an hour to course through the body so I was left in a little waiting area with a hospital bed and my Spotify station.  Before long, I was on a really narrow table sliding in and out of the scanner.  When I was done, I thanked the tech and rushed to find my neighbor so we could grab something to eat, at this point I’d gone several hours without eating.  I never even thought to ask when I’d get my results.

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My oncology nurse called today with my results.  I felt a little flutter in my stomach when I saw the number on my caller ID.  I knew instantly when I heard her voice what she was about to say.  The scans were in and they showed no signs of cancer.  Y’all excuse me while I have a praise break.

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