Every time this appointment comes around, there’s so many feelings and so many fears.
Yesterday was my follow up contrast CT scan. It didn’t go so well. Because of the cancer that I had, and the lymph nodes that had to be removed, I cannot have needle sticks or blood pressure taken on the right side of my body. That leaves me with one arm. For injections, for blood draws, for anything that needs to happen with a vein, I am not your girl.
Yesterday for my appointment, I had to have contrast dye during my CT scan which meant I needed to have an injection. That way, when they do my scan, at first they look at my body without contrast, and then they look at my body just after the contrast is injected. The dye is radioactive, and shows up brightly on X-ray images. It helps to show where any potential metabolism (rapid movement)would be indicating there might be cancer. It’s one of the reasons that you might be instructed not to eat before you have a scan. Because your body would still be digesting food and showing movement in that area. Anyway, I needed to have a radioactive dye injected in my arm so that they could take images and check for recurrence of cancer.
When I arrived to my appointment, I let her know that my phlebotomists, nurses and lab techs in the past have never been very successful. I’m a ““hard stick“. She tried once. Then she looked at me and said, “ooooh I’m sorry. You’re right.” Just after my vein blew. Another woman came in from a specialist team to try another tactic. She was successful initially, but when I was laying down for my CT, something didn’t feel right, and sure enough, that vein blew too. CT was finally completed and I was able to go to my six month check at the cancer center today. Where they drew more blood 😩.
There is absolutely nothing that compares to the stress of waiting to hear if you have cancer again. I run through all the scenarios in my mind. Where will the kids go, what will I do, what’s next, how long do I have… I haven’t slept well for a few days, but tonight?
TONIGHT I GET TO SLEEP.
For at least the next six months, I don’t have cancer.