The flurry of tests, scans & appointments is in full swing.
A few days ago my sister took me to the hospital for a CT scan from my pubic bone to my neck to look for distant metastases. This involved getting there 2 hours early to pick up ‘the drink.’ Over the course of the next 2 hours, you drink it in two ‘time chunks.’ I don’t know, nor do I want to know, the details of what the liquid is doing to my body other than ‘creating contrast.’ I mixed it with apple juice. 10/10; would recommend.
Whilst I enjoyed my cocktail, my sister and I went across the street to Nordstrom, as one does as they wait for a scan that will tell them approximately how close to death they are. We shopped, we bopped, we actually had a really nice time, which makes no sense in context. But my life has lost all context for the time being, so (shrug emoji).
I need to mention here that I have named my tumor Cousin Greg, after the character on Succession. To me, the parallels make sense and that is all you need to know.
When it is my time to shine (in a metal tube under millions of xrays), a very kind woman takes me back to the CT scan room where I am greeted by a handsome young man. He becomes even more handsome when he looks at me and says, ‘you are too young to have a tumor!’ Now, in other circumstances, this line would not work on me, but in my current circumstance, I was simply delighted and replied, ‘Actually this is my SECOND tumor!!!’ Talk about a meet-cute.
I ask his name and he replies, ‘Greg.’ What would a normal person do next? Say, ‘nice to meet you Greg.’ What do I do next? “OMG! I named my new tumor Greg! You know, after Cousin Greg on Succession? You watch Succession right?!’
You guys. This poor Greg was probably checking his paperwork to make sure I wasn’t there for a brain scan.
The test itself was fine. They attach you to an IV and at some point the robot injects you with something that makes you feel very warm head to toe and feel like you are aggressively peeing yourself. It is all just a big bag of fun.
I had results within an hour, thanks to some kind connections. The CT was clear for any nefarious cancerous activity! This is huge, guys. This is one giant step forward for this new cancer, just being the old cancer localized to my breast. They did find a cute lil kidney stone and an ovarian cyst. My spine is also degenerating nicely for my age. The more you know, amirght?
I also had a bone scan this week. During Cancer #1 I named a blog ‘Bone Scans n’ Harmony’ which makes me very bummed I can’t use that again cause it is 5 Stars.
They injected me with radioactive isotopes and sent me on my way for 2 hours of marinating radioactivity in m’bones. Where did I go? You guessed it. Nordstrom. The scan itself was very stressful for the first 15 minutes because the machine was inches from my face. ‘HA-LLO!!’ claustrophobia, said in Franck from Father of Bride’s voice. The latter 20 minutes were restful, as most radioactive naps are.
More good news- the bone scan was clean! No bone metastases! This means my cancer is officially ‘localized’ and treatable. Let me make this clear- had there been anything nefarious on the CT or bone scan I would likely have metastatic disease, which is considered chronic or terminal, depending on what level of life-ending rhetoric you prefer.
Last time I couldn’t feel any tumors so it was all very abstract. I didn’t feel in sync with my cancer. I just felt like me surrounded by odd circumstances. This time around, I can feel the mass. This is a wacky feeling because every time I go anywhere or do anything, I feel like I am taking Cousin Greg for a little walk. He’s like my stupid little buddy. Hey Greg! Look! It’s a fountain! Greg! Don’t we just love Panera?? Greggie, can you believe this traffic?!
Am I a psychopath? Maybe. But I prefer to think of it as radical creativity under duress. I mean, I have breast cancer on a mound that is not even considered a breast anymore. C’mon, that IS somewhat funny and worthy of an imaginary playscape I’ve created in my own head.