17/08/15: Breast Clinic: I’m cutting my shift short to attend my Breast Clinic appointment. I work at the hospital so its a short trip down stairs and around the corner to where I need to be-Lucky me!
I’ve spent the past week and a half having myself on that I won’t tell anyone-not until I know whether there’s owt to tell!!! Of course I’ve blabbed to everyone I’ve come within five feet of! Big gob!!!
As I descend the stairs, I realise that I’m not as anxious as I perhaps ought to be. I realise that in spite of my natural tendency, to err on the side of realistic possibility, I appear to have caught the very contagious ‘it’ll be nothing’ bug, that everyone that has come within five feet of me, has clearly been a carrier of.
I’m wandering down corridors and passing through doors-familiar enough to allow my mind to wander off…
“You’re struttin’ into town like you’re slingin’ a gun
Just a small town dude with a big city attitude
Honey are you lookin’ for some trouble tonight
You think you’re so bad, drive the women folk wild
Shoot ’em all down with the flash of your pearly smile
Honey but you met your match tonight
Oh, that’s right”
(Child, Desmond / Warren, Diane)
This is my kick cancer’s ass song or maybe it’s my kick ass cancer song- I’m not sure which yet, though the difference will become significant.
10:40- Breast Care Clinic: I sit in the waiting room, waiting. I wait in the waiting room in my uniform-I didn’t get changed, I’m going back to finish my shift after this!
I see the various ‘other women’ and their supporting cast, sitting in silence and I’m glad I came alone. There’s a strange, subtle tension holding us all in-like a force field, broken momentarily with each new name call, only to renew in its strength, closing up the person shaped hole left behind as soon as someone stands and leaves the room.
And then it’s me and I’m calm because ‘this is just a formality’ and ‘there’s nothing to see here’ and ‘these aren’t the Droids you’re looking for’
Consultant no.1: can’t feel any lump, thinks it’s just rigid breast tissue, happy to discharge me after I’ve hopped, skipped and jumped through the scans…
Three shadows identified-biopsy required-jump!!!
and I’m free-falling…without a net in sight!
Six biopsy samples (two of which hurt like a bugger), a change of clothes back into my civvies and a black tea later and I’m back in Consultant no.1’s office. He leans towards me, his face so grave, I fear it would appear rude to start munching on the biscuits they brought in with my tea.
“Something suspicious has shown up on the mammogram. It’s cancer. It will need surgery.”
I’m out in the fresh air, waiting for my mum to come get me, my mobile connecting me to my friend, unopened hospital biscuits clutched tightly in my hand.