When you get a call offering you a last minute cancellation for a CT scan you dont turn it down - even if it is on New Years Eve. So it was that at 12 I turned up at Selly Oak, still feeling queasy, and sat down in the waiting room to start drinking a jug of that vile contrast stuff. Ive realised its not just the taste that is awful, its the smell as well. Its a bit like a sweaty jock strap (yes I have smelled a few of those in my time). The temptation is to drink it as quickly as possible just to get it over with, but you have to drink it slowly, over an hour - its like torture.
This is the first time Ive been to Selly Oak for any of my treatment. Usually it is all carried out at the Queen Elizabeth where the Cancer Centre is. But Selly Oak is part of the same Trust so I guess it was inevitable I would end up there at some stage. Its also the hospital I worked at for 12 years and I was a bit nervous as I walked through the doors as a patient for the first time. I neednt have worried though - the place was so quiet, Ive never known it like that before. I dont think they expected many patients either because the place was FREEZING. Sat there wearing nothing but my sexy gown and socks (I wasnt going to take those off!) I was shivering. Can you believe the radiators were off? It was minus 3 outside and not much warmer in that waiting room.
Drinking the contrast was bad enough but there was worse to come. Ive often joked about my lack of veins since I had IL2 but the fact is its quite a serious problem now - as I found out. 3 doctors took nearly an hour and had 7 goes before eventually one managed to get a needle into a tiny vein on the back of my right hand. I felt like a pin cushion. And looked like one with bits of cotton wool stuck all over my arms. Because such a little vein is used when the dye is injected it STINGS like mad. I know these are minor discomforts in the grand scheme of things, numerous 'sharp scratchs' from the needles then the hot burning stinging going up my right arm while Im being scanned, but Im getting fed up of being hurt. The scan itself is no problem now. Im so used to lying in that noisy machine with a disembodied voice telling me when to breathe now, and its over in a few minutes.
So thats that now until I get the results, which wont be till 22nd Jan. when I next see Dr P. I felt a bit yukky after the scan, which is pretty normal, so spent the rest of the afternoon and most of the evening in bed - missing all the New Year celebrations. I dont really mind though - just waking up and it being 2009 is enough of a boost for me and Im starting to feel much brighter and more positive again.
So - whats in store for 2009 ? Well I have a BIG birthday coming up in a few weeks, and its Catherines 18th in February and I feel as if Im ready for another adventure. Not sure when or where yet or even how - there are so many places I would love to see.