Friday, February 1, 2013

PET Scans and Anxiety

I should be used to this by now.
This is my fourth PET Scan this year.
I had three PET Scans before this year.
I have had three MRI's.
Numerous chest x-rays, CT's, two bone biopsies, and a brochoscopy.
I am used to tests.
I should be used to this, but I am not.
And I don't think I every will be.
The tests themselves, they are fine. I know the nurses well. We catch up on each others families, talk about work, and talk about people we both know. It is like a little family gathering whenever we get together.
This time there was a new member to the family, a new nurse. She was excited to insert the needle on me because I have such good veins and she needed practice. I was happy to help.
Yes, it really is like a family, united by medical tests, knowing that one of the members possibly has some issues and all are there for that one.
And then there is the test. Getting injected with radioactive dye, having to sit completely still for an hour, then spending 25 minutes being scanned in a tube while lying still.
It's not hard. I am used to it and have my own little rituals I go through, my prayers I say, my meditations I focus on.
And then I leave, go and get something to eat, and come home to the family.
But then there is the waiting.
This is the part I will never get used to. No matter how often I do this, no matter how sure I am of the results, I will never get used to the waiting for the results.
Today I have to wait until after 1:00 pm.
Now don't get me wrong, I am confident about the results. I am sure that my pill is still doing exactly what it needs to be doing.
But there is always that nagging little doubt that something, some little thing, could be off.
I hate that nagging little doubt.
And I hate the waiting.
So I have sleepless nights, busy myself at the Y before the crack of dawn, get the girls ready for the day, and load up my morning with activities so I don't have time to sit and think.
I make myself busy during my time of waiting, because it is the best way to get through it.
By mid-afternoon everything will be fine, this quarterly test will be over and I will have three months until I have to go through it again.
But until then ... I wait.
What do you do when you have to wait?

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