I walked through the now familiar brightly adorned walls of the cancer centre with my mother and frail looking father shuffling a few paces behind us, we pressed the button on the worlds slowest elevator and headed up to the oncologists office on level 2.
Level 2 is my second favourite level of the cancer centre, level 1 is the best – that’s where the cafe is but level 2 isn’t so bad, just bloodwork and oncology reviews, it’s level 4 that sucks. Level 4 is where they pump your veins full of lifesaving poison while delivering tea and cakes on a little trolley so you can briefly ignore the purple clad mask wearing nurses walking around chairs filled with bald headed patients and try and pretend for a moment that you don’t have cancer.
That day brought good news, which made a nice change given the spate of disasters 2020 has bestowed upon us thus far, the chemo did its job and my fathers stage 4 prostate cancer is not ‘currently active’ and we had a two month reprieve from check ups.
As we walked back towards the counter smiling about the results yet another one of Dad’s chemo addled fingernails caught on his jumper and fell off.
I commented that we’d fix it up in a minute and a nurse who must have overheard popped her head out of a nearby office, smiled and silently handed me a bright blue bandaid. I certainly can’t complain about their service.
It pained me a little bit walking out because I was acutely aware of the golf ball sized lump that had suddenly appeared on my abdomen and was starting to grow concerned that perhaps the suspected endometriosis symptoms we’ve been having were actually something more sinister – I really didn’t want to spend more time in that painfully cheerful death sentence wielding building than I already had.
That was a month ago, I’d been trying to get us in to see the GP ever since but she’s a really good GP so unfortunately that means she’s really hard to get an appointment with and September 1st was the next available face to face time – I figured you can’t palpate an abdomen very well via Skype.
Unfortunately time doesn’t heal all wounds and now the golf ball is more of an oddly shaped orange.
Two weeks ago our psychiatrist told us to ring again and say we needed an urgent appointment and she’d contact the GP directly about ordering a CT scan ASAP. I rang the doctors office again and the receptionist told me there were no appointments available and if it’s urgent I should call 000 and go to hospital.
Sure it’s important, but not ambulance important. Besides hospitals are going to lead with invasive tests that I’m terrified of, a CT seems far more informative and far less terrifying.
Symptoms are worse, pain is harder to tolerate, the lump itself takes up a good chunk of my lower left to middle abdomen, much pestering of the doctors surgery about cancelations has resulted in the receptionist recognising my voice and sounding actively frustrated to hear it – I do however have a phone appointment tomorrow afternoon now (the squeaky wheel gets the grease) in which I will at least ask for the CT scan referral hopefully she’ll provide it sans physical examination.
This whole thing is very disconcerting for Us as a DID system. It’s been very quiet lately, I’m here a lot, so is Kate. I think all the different feelings are just too hard to think about and railroad us from moving forward in any direction, we will have to wait and see what the future holds and I guess it’s still 2020…