The Very Long Wait

Last fall I began a bit of a journey, and I have been waiting for its conclusion.

I had two health issues (well three, but this entry is about two of them). One was my upcoming colonoscopy. The second was a largish lump on the inside of my mouth, which did not heal or go away.

The colonoscopy is troubling for me on five levels. In order of severity they are: dealing with the hospital staff re: anaphylaxis; the procedure itself, which is very unpleasant; the preparation, which is horrendous for me, I don’t tolerate the purge chemicals well; the fear of human error resulting in my death, due to my anaphylaxis; and last but certainly not least, the fear that cancer will be found, and many more colonoscopies will populate my last years on earth.

About four weeks before a colonoscopy, my stress levels begin to increase. The colonoscopy was booked for early December.

The result of the colonoscopy was a polyp, which was removed and biopsied. The surgeon left the country just after the procedure, so my wait to hear the results dragged on until the middle of January. The results were benign, but the surgeon wasn’t satisfied with the thoroughness of the procedure, and I was then booked for a further test, a colonography. That is when my blood pressure really started to rise. That procedure was done, with the horrendous preparation again, in early January. The results were that there was no problem.

Now ordinarily I would have felt considerable relief! But, the other health issue was also in play. I had seen an ENT specialist, early in the fall, about the growth in my mouth, and he recommended it be removed. When I went to that appointment, he wasn’t prepared for my anaphylaxis, and could not perform the procedure. He left it that he would research a safe anesthetic, and call me to schedule the procedure again. I did not hear from his office. I called every few weeks to see what was going on, they kept saying they would call me… they did not.

I finally had an appointment with the Nurse Practitioner, and told her about the situation. She wrote to the ENT and within a week and a half I received a call from the ENT’s office to schedule the procedure. I found this whole process stressful.

After the lump was removed, it was time to wait for the biopsy results. Today I got the results, benign. The lip is healing nicely, so I am hoping I can just forget about this now.

So, since last fall I’ve had these biopsies and procedures at the back of my mind. I don’t dwell on these kinds of things, but they do create a stressful backstory to life.

During the fall and winter, my blood pressure has been rising, which is not surprising. I am working with my Nurse Practitioner to address the issue. My hope is that now that all of these procedures are completed, and the much awaited results have arrived, stress levels will decrease as will blood pressure readings. This remains to be seen however, high blood pressure is in my family health history, and I am genetically prone to it, so I just might have to consider new treatment strategies.

Winter continues to exert its influence, this last day of February. The sun is shining brightly on this morning’s snowfall, and it is cold out there. It isn’t as cold as the Polar Vortex, but it is cold enough that a hat and scarf are very much needed. It seems this cold weather will persist for at least the first week of March. The sun getting stronger every day, and the snow melts away more quickly than it did even a few weeks ago. Spring is coming.

Tank is having difficulties again. She goes into the garage again tomorrow. With a little luck the fix will be easy, and the bill won’t be debilitating. We haven’t quite recovered from the last repair bill for Tank!

Well, here I am then. Full of good news, with a sprinkling of annoyances, the spice of life.

Worldly

Weather

-11°C
Date: 1:00 PM EST Thursday 28 February 2019
Condition: Sunny
Pressure: 102.7 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: -11.1°C
Dew point: -17.5°C
Humidity: 60%
Wind: S 14 km/h
Wind Chill: -18
Visibility: 24 km

Quote

“Words that soak into your ears are whispered… not yelled.”

Old farmer.

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10 Responses to The Very Long Wait

  1. Eileen Barton says:

    Glad your biopsies came back benign, Maggie. Hope you are able to get the blood pressure under control so that you can put all that stress behind you.

  2. meriset says:

    I’m glad the biopsies showed good results. I hope the blood pressure settles down. Stay warm! (It is warm today in Yuma, the windows are open and one ceiling fan is busy rotating, 82F (28C).

  3. Thanks Eileen! I am very glad to have the biopsies behind me! I am optimistic about the blood pressure, I’ve gotten it down before, I just might need a little more help from medication this time around. Time will tell!

  4. Thanks Joan! Oh my, those open windows sound heavenly!!! Cold here tonight, and at least another week of it to come. Enjoy your evening in the breezes!

  5. WendyNC says:

    Maggie, I’m sorry that you’ve had to have all these procedures and be delayed in getting results, but it seems that it is mostly ending well. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if that old blood pressure stabilizes now that you’re past all this. I certainly hope that is the case. It also sounds as if you have an NP who will advocate for you. That could be a very good relationship.

  6. Teri says:

    Glad to hear things turned out well.

    I’ve had tests off and on and I really dislike how just having them makes me feel unwell and uncertain. When I’m not having tests, I can get back to being myself again.

  7. Steve-Paul (SP) Simms says:

    Very stressful and unpleasant. I am glad your results, at least, are good. Lots of love.

  8. Wendy, thank you for your good wishes. I really like my Nurse Practitioner! She has a student working under her, I am not particularly fond of her, she says things that I consider to be agist, not a great understanding of aging there. She also made reference to hearing loss and dementia, making a connection, but her interpretation was somewhat flawed in my opinion, from what I read in medical journal articles. I have far more confidence in my ability to comprehend academic text than hers. So I will have to watch her. My actual Nurse Practitioner is great though, so I am considering requesting only seeing her, and not the student. I haven’t made up my mind about that yet.

  9. Thanks Teri! You describe the experience of medical tests well, it is a relief to “get back to being myself again!”

  10. Thanks Steve-Paul! I am so very relieved that the outcome is positive. It is fortunate that the tests were available, and I am glad of the opportunity to have them, but I am not well pleased with the process, so much unnecessary wait time. If the test results had been unfavourable, I would have been very, very angry about the delays, which would have interferred with timely treatments, but luckily that is not an issue in this situation.