It probably doesn’t get more existential crisis-ey than reading Kierkegaard while listening to Max Richter while sitting in the waiting room of a decrepit hospital while waiting to find out about possible cancer results. But there I found myself yesterday, at St. Paul’s, in a cramped waiting area with 25 other stressed out people, waiting to see a surgeon about some interpretation of a thyroid biopsy I had done at the beginning of January.
And like any good crises of the heart and mind – the results are still inconclusive. Cancer isn’t likely at this point, but then again the Doctor doesn’t really know, so more tests. Another ultrasound, another needle biopsy (which in case you don’t know, involves needles in the throat) to be scheduled in a month or so.
What’s struck me about the whole process is how incredibly efficient the system can be when there is an actual health crisis afoot. I mean, you want it to be efficient, but at the same time it’s a bit frightening how you can be having your annual physical one month, and within weeks be in an entirely different examination room talking to a surgeon about the possibility of getting a major part of the body’s hormonal system removed.
In any case, it’s not much of a worry except that there are some atypical cells going on, but with no visual malignancy of any kind – so there’s a good chance these are just nodules that need to be monitored. But it’s still a big drag for someone like me who has never had a health scare in my life. I suppose it’s practice for being reflective when I get older. Or just practice for being a better human? I’m not sure but I certain it’s not a “gift” or “fate” either. It just is.
Thinking of you and hoping you get a speedy (and non-scary) diagnosis really soon. It really IS amazing how fast things can move in the health care world when the word ‘cancer’ comes up! Let me know how things turn out…
Thanks! I’m just taking it as it comes. Not overly worried about anything, frustrated more than anything else that I have to do all these extra things (appointments) in an already-busy schedule!
It’s a particular kind of apprehension that can seize us in these situations – when we find ourselves “in the system”, our familiar bodies now suddenly not so familiar. Time spent in hospital waiting rooms can grant extra clarity to our thinking, and put life happenings into a sweet perspective. That is one upside. But I hope any fears and frustrations are soon cancelled out by a reassuring diagnosis.