Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The "C" word, part 2

His phone rang endlessly, but his mind, having effectively negated the familiar chimes, had no intention of letting him answering it. He recognized the number on the caller ID. It belonged to his urologist. He listened in anticipation to the numerous messages his doctor had left, however shunning each word.

"Cancer," he thought to himself, hating his urologist for the hideous insinuation. "I haven't smoked a cigarette in almost fourteen years, he reasoned with himself. He had assumed that since giving up this long gone habit, the chance of getting cancer had been rendered null and void.

Having already been punished by one too many humiliating procedures, he was not looking forward to another assault on his psyche — or his body.

The blood tests were negative. A sonogram of his kidneys, served only to reveal, the camouflage print of his fruit of the looms. No kidney stones were found. But an x-ray caused his urologist concern. After several unanswered calls, and ignored phone messages, the doctor finally got through.

"There's a suspicious spot on your right hip bone. It might be a bone spur," his doctor muttered with masked agitation. "But, it might be a bone lesion, possibly cancerous."

A second x-ray betrayed his hope. Something, oddly curious, showed up on the film.

A month following the x-ray, and days after visiting his family back home, questioning his grandfather about his bouts with cancer, he would be slid into a coffin-sized capsle. An MRI would render the verdict of an impending ailment. He would soon receive his sentence, punishment for a decade of smoking.

"Do you have cancer?" a technician asked as she prepared him for a full body bone scan.
"No," he eeped out an answer. "Why do you ask?" feigning calmness. His mind was spinning. "This test is usually given to cancer patients. It is useful in determining if an already existing cancer has spread to a patients bones"

She continues her task, injecting him with a radioactive compound. The ingredients of which would cause hot spots, or areas of question on the bone scan. Giddy, she continued in her chitchat, as though serving him breakfast at a late night IHOP. "Maybe," he thought to himself, seeking solace in positive thoughts, "her fatuous demeanor might suggest the insignificance of these tests."

The MRI scan wasn't so bad considering the claustrophobic circumstances of the 45-minute procedure. He lay his hands across his chest, holding a sensor which would alert a technician of his need for release. He breathed air deep into his lungs, letting it out slowly like he had learned through practice of yoga. Headphones were placed over his ears although he couldn’t hear a thing through the thunder coming from the MRI machine.

The bone scan followed. Again, he lay on a bench, prostrate, occasionally sneaking a peek over at an adjacent computer monitor. The monitor, busy painting pictures with a million white dots, sat slightly off to his right, just above his feet. As the contraption scanned his body from toe to crown, a starry image seduced his conscious causing him to drift off into a hypnotic trance. Hallucinations of his spirit buoyed through the heavens, wavering up through a constellation of a million bright stars. His mind conceived each star to represent a life lost, and whose spirits had formed an entire celestial community awaiting his death. His arrival into this unknown world would take him far away from his loved ones. Or possibly closer to them than what he could have ever imagined.

This post continued at a later date.

Part 1 can be read here.

Unrelated thought for the day: More than a few important things about life, love, fathering, grandfathering and being a good husband were revealed to me last night as I drank my beer and read my bible.



Friar Tuck said...

i am a little worried bout ya

Miss A. said...

I've dealt with cancer and am dealing with a sibling who is currently undergoing treatments for cancer.

It's very emotional.

Keep the faith and well... support is just around the corner! *wink*

Kim said...

Ya gotta stop doing this to us! As I said before, I don't like this story.

The Archivist said...

This seems to be a little better than the first post, but still worrisome.

Rinda M. Byers said...

Yes, keep us posted, Don, and my prayers are with you.

Usually, x-rays don't show or show things as well as the CT's and MRI's. I had a foot fracture for two weeks that went undiagnosed because the x-rays said no fracture! And doctors tend to error on the fretful, fussy side. My friend just got through a second set of mammograms all because they couldn't figure out a shadow that really was just a shadow on the first set, things like that.

My first transcription job was in the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, right on the same floor with the patients. I learned one thing there, that there is so much more hope for patients with any kind of disease these days. I'm glad I'm not living in my grandmother's time, really grateful. AS a kid, I just missed the polio epidemic. The vaccines had just come out. So, take hope whatever comes.

And take good care of yourself, too, now, God Bless, Rinda

The Gig said...

This is regarding your comment on my blog today. I am glad that Russ Lambaugh is on -- you have been mischievious enough for one year. "Mr. Dork."

The Gig said...

About your post today, you keep scaring me out of my wits and you have everyone on edge. I'm with Kim --QUIT DOING THIS TO US. your mother -- has the two daughters read this?

Nikki said...

Don, you keep scaring me with these types of posts. I'm already worried about my aunt and her bone cancer, and I don't want you to be added to that list. I'm sending prayers up for you anyway.

Susan Taylor Brown said...

Echoing the rest of the folks here, Don. I hope you're just showing off your ability to "lie" to us.

Oricon Ailin said...

I'm with everyone else Don. I truly hope that this is just a writing exercise and not a personal account.

Please, do tell us what's going on. You have many of us very worried. We love you and care about you. *HUGS*

God be with you.

The Gig said...

Your comment on my post today is not funny. Wipe the smile off of my face in this picture.

I do not want you talking about what you are going to be doing after you are gone.

Christopher M. Beatrice said...

Dude you have us a bit worried. Hope all is well. Keep us informed.

Positively Cheryl said...

I truly hope that this is just a writing exercise Don. PLEASE hurry up and tell us if this is about you! You are in my prayers either way.

Jdid said...


notyouraverage.... said...

hmmm... apparently cancer runs in my family. my fathers mom and all her sisters, apparently died from ovarian cancer - and my cousin just had an operation to remove hers. now my sis, has some mysterious stuff happening regarding her liver. hope all is well.