One Helluva Week (and a Half)

Wow, talk about craziness ramping up for the holidays. I had my 6 month CT scan. Everything looked good, except for a few, very slightly enlarged lymph nodes. Alla was not at all concerned, because I’d been having winter allergy stuff going on – sore throat, post-nasal drip… you know, the fun stuff. But, the genius technician who wrote the report included the comment that a PET scan would be helpful. Great. Because it was in writing, Alla had to order the scan – because liable. I was a bit freaked out at first, thinking, “What if it’s not allergies,” but as I sat there in the Quiet Room in the Nuclear Medicine dungeon, waiting for all the glowy stuff to spread throughout my body, I wasn’t worried at all. Which is good, because I’ve been stress-eating these past couple of weeks, and the scale is starting to grumble at me.

Not gonna lie - when I first looked at this order, I was definitely scared. But, by the time I got there, my new allergy meds were helping to ease my symptoms, and I was totally five by five (so happy that I can now use one phrase to quote my two favorite TV shows).
Not gonna lie – when I first looked at this order, I was definitely scared. But, by the time I got there, my new allergy meds were helping to ease my symptoms, and I was totally five by five (so happy that I can now use one phrase to quote my two favorite TV shows).

**UPDATE** I was told that I had to wait until at least Monday for my results, but I got a call from Debbie, Alla’s nurse. Alla’s out of town (Aruba – yeah, I’m jealous), but she couldn’t wait to read me the report. Negative! Hallelujah!

**UPDATE** Later that evening, I got a call from “Unknown.” I didn’t answer, but Unknown left a voice mail. It was Alla, calling from Aruba to tell me she saw the results and since she didn’t know if anyone had called from her office, she wanted to make sure I knew the good news. THIS is why I love her. I sent her a message back to thank her for calling and to tell her to stop working while on vacation.

Of course, I couldn’t JUST have this going on. I had to have a routine colonoscopy last week too. And, to make things more interesting, we threw in an endoscopic ultrasound as well to check in on a benign nodule I’ve had for a few years. Like I said – ramping up for the holidays. Doesn’t everyone do this stuff in December? Anwyay,, Monday was a feast of coffee, tea, and Jello, followed by a most disgusting, super-sized glass of Suprep. That stuff works fast! I was cleaned out in 90 minutes. Oh, for extra fun, I got to stomach another round in the morning. Then, after the am cleanout was complete, Hubs and I headed out to get my ass roto-rooted. For most people, the prep is what is most dreaded. For me, it’s a bit more than that. Some of you know, some of you don’t, that about 24 years ago, I almost died from a perforated bowel during a colonoscopy. Well, technically, I did die, because in reading the notes (we were investigating a lawsuit at the time), my mom and I saw the phrase, “Resuscitation efforts began at [whatever time].” Until reading that, we had no idea. How hella-scary is that? Though, perhaps it explains my less than stellar sense of balance.

Anyway, I was not excited to have this procedure, and told the doc as much. I had recently found out that although my would-be murderer has retired, he does some research work with my current GI group. I made sure to mention his name when telling my doc the tale so when I asked him to please avoid any friable looking scar tissue (from previous resections), he would get that bit of shock value to make him truly listen. Once that job was done and my IV was started, I kissed Hubs goodbye and was wheeled off to the procedure room. Along the way, I met my lovely nurse anesthetist, whom I told about my love of propofol. Not in the Michael Jackson sense. But in that when that stuff wears off, you wake up so much more quickly than from a cocktail including stuff like versed. Once that hit my veins, I was out.

When I awoke, I did my mental check to see if I felt my insides were destroyed, and I’m happy to report there was no pain. So, a successful drink of water and flatulent trip to the bathroom later (for the uninitiated, they pump your gut full of air so they can see better during the scope), and I was on my way home, by way of a stop for lunch, followed by a wonderful couch nap.

Despite the fact that I’d missed two days at the gym because of that scoping nonsense, I skipped Wednesday as well so I could get back to volunteering in The Girl’s classroom. I love helping out with the reading groups on Wednesdays, and since I’d missed the week before due to the CT scan, I didn’t want to ditch out again this week.

But, to pile on to the rest of the and worry of the week, my longest (we’re not old) and dearest friend’s father, who had been fighting a recurrence of metastatic cancer, passed away on Monday, and the funeral was Thursday. Originally, I had scheduled my PET scan for then, but was able to move it to Friday.

In general, it sucked – as funerals tend to do. Lots of tears and reunions with friends that would have been enjoyed anywhere else.  But, this was the first Greek Orthodox funeral I’d ever attended, and as far as these things go, the service and the Father’s eulogy was truly comforting. While I don’t really fear death itself, I’ll admit that I generally feel a bit intimated by he idea of eventually being in G-d’s Kingdom. It’s the Big Guy’s house, and it seems like a lot to live up to. But in the Greek Orthodox Church, with all the saints, it sounds so welcoming. The Father’s eulogy made it almost sound like a party. So, besides being thankful that Mr. P. is no longer suffering, I’m happy for him to be somewhere so wonderful.

The Father spoke of Mr. P.’s eternal life just beginning, and I was amazed hearing him say what echoed the sentiment The Girl uttered when I told her of his passing. She came over and hugged me, and said, “Just think of it this way – he gets to start his life all over in a much more comfortable place.” Kids are so damned insightful, aren’t they?

Ok, can we please have some normalcy now? I’m ready.

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