She was sitting in a small cubicle wearing one of those horrible gowns that even someone with a PhD wouldn't be able to tie so that she might look respectable let alone presentable.....she was nervous, she had been called back to the room twice for more "pictures" and sitting there alone, cramped and feeling naked brought back old feelings she thought had been dealt with....please God she prayed if those x-rays show the big "C" has come back then give me the grace and the courage to deal with it the way you want me too. Help me to be strong, do what I have to do and please God help me so that my family will not worry nor feel they have to leave their families again to come to my aid. Oh yes she said, change my life if you want but please God let's you and me work together not change their lives even a little bit.
She was me this afternoon, these are the prayers I said while waiting to speak to the radiologist.....tense yes, frightened no....I had myself prepared for whatever he was about to tell me......when the nurse finally knocked on the door and said he would see me, I asked if I could get dressed but she said no, leave your gown on. So I slowly walked down that seemingly never ending hall to his office. I immediately looked into his eyes, looking for signs of what was to come. I saw them, so blue and clear but they gave me no clues. After sitting down he began speaking with me, I wasn't even sure what he was saying, I knew he was talking, his lips were moving but I honestly cannot tell you what he said until he said, we found "NO cancer"....then I felt the relief spread through my body, tears came to my eyes and still I didn't hear a word he was saying as I was saying a prayer, "thank you God". After a few minutes his words started to settle in, this had been my third mammogram in 5 weeks, and one biopsy. The cyst had grown and he wanted to inject a needle and withdraw the fluid. He wanted to do it then....yikes...funny I was prepared to hear that my cancer had come back but I wasn't prepared to have a cyst drained. Okay I said, let's get it done then. We had to wait for another doctor and during this time the nurse cleaned the site with alcohol and injected freezing into the area. We went into another room where the doctors had access to small tv's so they could see exactly where they had to go to remove this liquid.....I looked at the very long but skinny needle, my first mistake. I turned my head away as they guided the needle into the proper place and they thought they would have everything done and me on my way in twenty minutes at the most.....wrong....no matter how many times or where they went they just couldn't find the liquid....finally a very small amount was extracted, the rest was hard and they realized after much discomfort that they could get no more. I was fine, it was okay, it wasn't cancer. That kind blue eyed doctor apologized as he thought it would of been full of liquid, he said I would be a bit sore when the freezing came out but I had nothing to worry about. He also said he wanted to see me again in December. This cyst wasn't going to hurt me but it was something that wasn't suppose to be in my body so he would look, take pictures and test again in December. I said thank you and went back to the small cubicle and dressed, I just wanted out of there.
When I got to my car the tears began to fall, I had been there almost 5 hours and most of that time was spent sitting around watching others come and go in a quickly fashion. My tears were of joy for myself and sadness for the young woman who was told she had stage 2 cancer. She was so frighten, I tried to console her, comfort her but I knew my mind was racing and I could of shown so much more empathy and given her tons more of encouragement, instead I kept thinking of myself. Even with my relief I felt selfish. Here I was praying to be able to do things my way, I should of focused on her.
Tonight I am full of relief and gratitude and yes all that prodding has left me sore. I am typing with a pillow so not to move my arm very much. I am thinking of that lady, her eyes confused in my mind with those of my doctor's eyes. I am sure after a good night's sleep I will be able to do that lady justice with sincere heartfelt prayers for only her. I wish I had given her my phone number....she may need someone who has been there to talk to, I am going to call Brenda, the nurse, and asked her if she could give that lady my name and number in case I can help....I'm not sure she will do this but I have to try. I never have been good at living with guilt, and I feel guilty of being thankful that it was her receiving the bad news and not me, guilty of feeling selfish and guilty of not being there when someone needed a kind and encouraging word. Words I had but didn't use.
Probably I am not being very clear tonight my friends. I have taken a pain killer and have been given 3 more to take if I need them. I cannot take them as I am meeting friends tomorrow for lunch downtown. Their friendship, smiles and just being around friends I love so dearly will be the only pain killer I will need. I would rather be able to drive and meet them than take a pill......they will help me to forget the pain and remember the love.
The lesson for today is prepare for the worse but expect the best of everything this wonderful life gives us. Face all challenges as it is through challenges we can truly appreciate the good times and in my case today, the good news. Give thanks, never ever put off telling those you love just how much they mean to you. It was a scare for sure made worse by remembering the past but it's over. I am well and I am happy.
Thank you God for all my blessings and to all of you Good Night and God Bless. I am sending you all many, many hugs.......:-)