Monday, 3 March 2008
Bag of Bones
I had my pictures taken today. Before you begin to tell me how good I look, these are not my pictures. This bag of bones belongs to someone else.
The reason I have bone scans is to see if there is any progression of my cancer on my bones. I do already have a spot at nodule 9 (ladies, just where our bra strap would lie) on my spine.
The day started with me calling my nurse Lori and telling her my bones kind of ache. My shoulders, my arms, and my knees. Is there a test I can get done besides the bone scan because I would like to see my chiropractor or physiotherapist or for that matter get a massage.
Up to the 3rd floor at St. Boniface to Nuclear Medicine. It is a long aisle past maternity that has skulls and crossbones on every door. Actually it has more politically correct pictures than that, it has warning signs with radiation marked under it. I feel a lot safer now.
I wait 45 minutes for the PICC nurse to come and inject me with radiation. This radiation will light up my bones and in two hours I will be ripe and ready to get my pictures taken. The crystal in the camera picks up the radiation that has attached itself to the bones.
This procedure helps show if a cancer has spread to other bones, and it can find metastases earlier than regular x-rays. Bone scans also can show the extent of damage that the primary cancer has caused in the bone. I believe the radioactive material I received is called technetium diphosphonate. The radioactive substance is attracted to diseased bone cells throughout the entire skeleton. Areas of diseased bone will be seen on the bone scan image as dense, gray to black areas, called "hot spots."
After my injection my bones pick me up and walk me to the main floor where I enter another lovely area of the hospital called Cancer Care Manitoba. Here I am getting a treatment for my bones called pamidronite. It is like a heavy dose of calcium to help keep the bones strong. I get this treatment once a month and it takes about an hour and a half.
My bones come in very handy after pamidronite by walking me back to nuclear medicine. Even my index finger bone on my right hand came in useful by pushing the elevator buttons. I go and surprise, I don't even have to wait, they are ready for me.
I go in the room and lay this bag of bones on a very small table and feel my self rise. My feet are then placed up with an elastic band to hold them together. I then feel myself moving feet first under the machine.
I am now in position and will just have to lie very still for
30 minutes. My face is about three inches from the inside
of the machine. I feel a bit dizzy, but realize that it is
because my eyes are open and they are moving me even closer
to the top of the machine.
I close my eyes, which always helps. This is what I am thinking:
. The Lord is my shepherd.
. I should say the rosary.
. For fuck sake.
. I can't believe Angie isn't here anymore for me to grumble with.
. I'm hungry.
. I can't believe I'm lying here and Colette is probably golfing.
. I can't barely bend, never mind swing a stick of any kind.
. Must be nice.
. Save it, you are being pathetic.
. Why not be pathetic, I'm a loser anyways.
. I count the specks on the ceiling. Stop after 60 when I have only
covered an inch on the first tile.
. How much longer.
. I will get 4 cheeseburgers and a large fry. One burger each for
Angelique and Jacquie.
. This sucks.
. Stop whining.
Your done. Oh right on, thank you. She says good luck. I say 'you too.' I forgot she doesn't need the luck. I do.
I go wait for Angelique and I'm wondering where the fuck she is.
I've been waiting for almost a minute. Angelique picks me up
and I say lets get McDonalds. She doesn't want anything
but orders for me and Jacquie. She orders two cheeseburgers,
one large fry, and one Angus burger. The bill is $12. I almost
have a canniption. $12 for what. How much is that Angus Burger?
She reacts the best way when I am like this. She ignores me.
I am very sour and angry. I see my little Josephine, she is so
excited to see me. I am suddenly happy. Angelique shows me
how she kisses now if you ask for a kiss. I am over the moon.
Jacquie drops me home and I can't get here fast enough.
I am in a pissed off mood.
This bag of shit needs her bag of bones to be okay.