I’ve got half of the equation, but don’t know how to figure out the other half.
Following my CT Scan Monday, the Radiologist said my results should be read by Wednesday.
I just figured out that I don’t know how to get my results, short of waiting for my appointment with the doctor on Monday. I made the mistake of not asking the question, pinning someone down as to how I might get my results.
My results could be sitting in an in-box somewhere, or on someone’s desk, days before then.
I called my oncologist’s office. Busy place. It’s almost impossible to get a human. If you want to speak to a nurse, you have to leave your name and number and wait. There’s also a section of the recording that announces that test results won’t be given over the phone — that you have to make an appointment to get them.
I have an appointment. But not til MONDAY!!!!!!!!! Please don’t tell me that if the results are in later today, tomorrow, Friday, that you’re going to make me wait that long. That would be sheer agony.
Beaumont’s protocol in this regard seems vastly different from that of the University of Michigan Hospital. That’s where I had my breast cancer surgeries and testing done following my 2006 diagnosis. Chalk one up for U of M — the nurse would call me immediately whenever a new test result came in. I could depend on that. That gave me a little bit of security during a time in my life when I felt the floor could open up at any moment, that I could fall through a trap door. And yes, they gave test results over the phone.
I never had to wait, worry and wonder if perhaps the results were in and someone just hadn’t gotten to them. Or that they were waiting for me to come into the office — still many days away. I knew that as soon as they had them, I’d have them.
So, today, right now, that’s my challenge. It doesn’t feel good. In fact, it feels awful. I feel helpless. And it pushed me over the edge. Lots of wracking sobs over here today.
Will the scan results make that big of a difference? Yes. My first scan post my first three rounds of chemo should indicate where we are in this battle. Are we in hot pursuit? Making great progress? Or, do we need to restrategize, change tactics? They could indicate whether I’m going to need a longer chemo regimen — or, my hope, shorter. To say that my life hangs in the balance would not be overly dramatic.
Knowing, whatever it is, has got to be better than the limbo I’m in.
But I’m kicking myself. I shouldn’t have put myself in this position — allowed so much of myself, my emotions, to hinge not only on the results, but on getting them today. Shouldn’t have set the bar so high.
But that’s what I did. And here I am. Waiting. Crying. Trying to calm myself down. Feel something other than terror. Or of being so alone.
Trying to accept that the results will get here when they get here, and that they’re going to be what they’re going to be, whether that’s today, tomorrow, Friday, or, ugh, even Monday.
Trying to do a normal day of life — whatever normal is these days.
Copyright 2011, Amy Rauch Neilson