first steps of project discovery: CT and MRI completed

I arrived at UCIMC at 9:30 am, ready if not in spirit, in body to go through the motions scheduled by all those interested in finding answers. First stop was the infusion center to get a dose of fluids in the hope of reducing the impact of the contrast for the MRI scan on my weakened kidneys. I asked the nurse what my recent creatinine reading was, and the good news was 1.5, which is not yet normal but it is lower than my usual 1.7. Being thankful for all the minor perks can help at a time when too many readings, values and test results provide little reason for rejoicing.

Thankfully, the imaging laboratory is close, so not a lot of travel was involved, a good thing for me doing solo with my cane.. CT without scan was quicker than getting an injection. Since I woke this morning with a queasy stomach and decided to forego any breakfast at home, I picked up a small pizza just to have something while I waited for my phone call from MRI, who said they would let me know when they were ready to start my test.

Finally, after 2:00 pm my MRI began. I was not prepared for a face mask, so at first, I was rattled when the platform bed slid into the donut. I started squeezing the emergency egg to get me out. I think that because the tech running the MRI said he thought we should reschedule because it was so late, I had become a little uneasy. And, the last thing I wanted to do was to reschedule this brain and spine MRI. I told him it was out of the question because my oncologist worked hard to get the approval for this emergency MRI in order to get some answers as soon as possible. With a bit of coercion from me, a call lto the infusion center to confirm they would be available at 6:00 pm when MRI would send me back there to finish my day with a flushing infusion to help clear out the contrast. By the time the tech got me into the MRI machine, it felt a bit more rushed than I had expected, and that, together with the face mask, rattled me.

So, I asked the tech to leave me alone for a moment, and I worked out a brief medication to calm myself down. Then, I was ready. He said, We can reschedule. I said, Absolutely not.

The machine banged and jolted with startling clangs as any I could remember. I was completely inside the donut, which I entered with my eyes closed firmly though not scrunched. I meditated, concentrating on colors in my third eye and calm, even breathing. Every now and then the panic tried to startle me, but I remained steady. Throughout the nonstop three hours, except for a slight break to add contrast to my port, the techs asked me how I was doing and commended me for remaining completely still. When we finished, the techs shook my hand and said, it was a tough test, but they thought I was even tougher. I was just glad to have it behind me.

Back at the infusion center Jennifer connected my port to a two-hour infusion of fluid and brought me bottles of water and juice while reminding me to drink at least two liters of water a day to flush the contrast out of the kidneys.

Home sweet home was as sweet as it could be. I am as relieved as I could be to have finished this part of my testing. I am not thinking at all yet about results. I am simply enjoying the relief of completing one part of this project.

Tomorrow is another day. That is when I will consider the next steps in the project.

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© 2004–2012 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.

4 responses to “first steps of project discovery: CT and MRI completed

  1. I am claustrophobic & am super-scared of ever having to have an MRI.
    You are a rock, my friend. 🙂

  2. It is amazing the things that one can do when it is necessary. You should be very proud of yourself. Try to have a restful weekend and hopefully you will have answers very soon. Thinking of you.

  3. That’s it…one step at a time…and when that gets overwhelming, denial works very well…I still use it. Think of you so often! Sending love and healing warm energy to you!

  4. Pingback: Glee News | Living History

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