Thursday, 16 February 2017

Waiting Ain't No Game

You would think the most difficult parts of these situations would be finding out, but personally, I can tell you it's the waiting that kills you. You see the doctor, you wait for a test, you have the test, you wait for the results, the results are inconclusive, you wait for another test, you have the test, you get referred to a specialist, you wait to see the specialist. Meanwhile, you are trying to stay calm, think happy thoughts and find Tinkerbell's fucking fairy dust so you can fly to Neverland where time stops. It's maddening; but that's the process.

I had the pelvic MRI at the Cross Cancer on February 6, 2017 at 7:30 in the morning. Lucky for me, my boss, who has been extremely understanding and supportive, works with me to make it easy to attend all these appointments. It was so cold that morning that the electronic parking station was frozen up and I had to wait for what seemed like forever in the cold for the ticket to come through. I walked into the Cross Cancer for the first time and waited in line at the front reception. Reception sent me to a side room to set up my patient file and they presented me with a cool little red bank card which indicated I was a patient of the Cross Cancer. I hated that stupid card. It was a symbol that made this whole thing just a little too real for me. I preferred to keep my head in the clouds until I actually knew something but this card was like a rope pulling me back down.

The new patient coordinator walked me across the facility to radiology and the lady at the front desk there instructed me to disrobe and change into the hospital garb. I did so and when I came out she handed me the standard clipboard of information to complete. The usual stuff - Do you have any metal in your body the giant electromagnet might rip out? I answered the questions to the best of my ability before bringing the clipboard back to the desk. Before I could walk away the woman asked me, "Excuse me, are you wearing the pajama pants?" I looked down at my hospital gown and dress shoes and responded "There's pants?" - She nodded and as I felt my face turn beet red she directed me back to the change rooms where I tried my best to shake off my embarrassment while I pulled on the missing clothes.

I was brought in quickly and they explained the MRI to me, asked me another series of questions and sat me in the chair to inject the contrast. The contrast is basically a dye that is injected into you and provides contrast on the pictures against things like tumors. The pictures are apparently so good that sometimes, if tumors are present, the doctor can even tell if they are malignant (cancerous). The MRI tech was asked to mark on my body the site of the surgical incisions from my hernia surgery. Because my surgery was laparoscopic (done with tiny incisions and a camera) I had three scars.  She marked the scars by taping a vitamin E capsule on top of each of them. One over the left scar, one on the right, and one settled nicely into my belly button.

The MRI team then placed me nicely onto the bed and slid me into the MRI tunnel with some headphones and light music where I promptly fell asleep snoring. Seriously, who falls asleep during an MRI? It's so loud! When it was all over I got changed, removed the vitamin E, and returned again, to waiting.

Things I learned from my MRI experience:

1. Dress shoes and striped socks are a hilarious idea
2. Read the directions on the change room wall
3. I can sleep literally anywhere


  1. i would of loved to have been provided pants (even if I didn't know that they were initially an option...) Too cute! :)

    1. Totally did! Although I was embarrassed I was also stoked when they told me there were pants!