A time for miracles

Last night, I was invited to check out the super high-tech, one-of-a-kind guided therapeutics operating room (GTx OR) at the Toronto General Hospital. The operating room is equipped with really fancy, expensive imaging equipment which will be used during cancer surgeries, allowing surgeons to be much more precise when looking at and removing tumours. Pretty cool, right? It actually made me a bit jealous, like my surgeries weren’t sci-fi enough. However, this snazzy operating room is currently only being used for research purposes, i.e. very unique cases. And I’d prefer not to be a very unique case, so I don’t hope to be in there any time soon. Except to play with all the crazy machines, which from my understanding, is not allowed. Too bad.

The presentation about the room was a bit of a challenge for me, as the surgeon who was presenting spoke of aggressive tumours and the fast growing ones being more likely to “come back with a vengeance” and “those are the ones they worry about.” Even though I’m very aware of my cancer and what it could mean, I still don’t like hearing cancer spoken about in these terms. Other people are able to discuss it and ask questions, purely for interest’s sake, remaining safely detached. But I don’t have that luxury. Every discussion of cancer and prognosis and dying feels personal to me. I can’t escape the feeling of, that could be me he’s talking about. Someone again said something about me being brave last night, to which I replied, I am not brave, this is just my life. I have no choice but to wake up every day, and live this life. C’est la vie.

Next week, I’m getting yet another MRI. This time around, we’re going hunting for tumours in the brain. You see, I have been having headaches for awhile now. My oncologist was not overly concerned, but when I mentioned them to my family doctor and how they have been persistent, she wanted to do the MRI because of “my history.” In other words, because I have cancer. And once you have cancer, everything else could be cancer. That’s just the way it goes. So I’ll do the test, and I’ll try to meditate and breathe deeply and not think about dying while I await the results. Same old story, different organ.

I also have a UTI (urinary tract infection for the layperson). I felt the symptoms come on very suddenly last week. Even though it is incredibly minor and tolerable, I still got a little weepy and angry over it. I mean, can I not get one week off without my body malfunctioning in some way? Without having to order another test, or fill another prescription? I am so ready for a break from thinking about my health, my body, doctors, hospitals, medicine. I am trying so hard to return to normal life (whatever that is) but it seems something always pops up, holding me back, keeping me firmly planted in this state of unrest.

Tonight is the last night of Chanukah. One of my favourite holidays. Presents. Fried food. Family. Chocolate. All of the key ingredients. Oh and of course, most importantly, Chanukah is about miracles. A big miracle. And oh boy, do I love a good miracle. More miracles, less cancer.

Someone should put that on a bumper sticker.

Clinging tightly to my wonderful Chanukah loot. Happy holidays!

Clinging tightly to my wonderful Chanukah loot. Happy holidays!

About these ads

10 thoughts on “A time for miracles

  1. Hi Steph! Those machines should really come with some form of entertainment. I mean it’s almost 2014! Get with the times, people.:) I’ll keep you in my prayers re the MRI. – Donna

  2. Hey Steph, Happy Chanukah!!!!Before you go for the MRI, perhaps try anice, relaxing full body massage, or total body reflexology? it will help..just a bit..to get you into a better space so you can relax in that g-d awful machine.

  3. Ugh. Every little ache and pain echos the possibility of recurrence… that’s our new life. And you’re right: it’s not brave, just unfair. Prayers coming your way for the MRI. Maybe an Ativan and a little nap? Happy Last Night. xoxo

  4. And maybe, you’ve already had your miracle! And then you can relax and know you’re just stuck with crappy UTIs with the rest of us. But seriously, UTIs suck.

  5. The fear never goes away. Better they do the MRI than not. Enjoy your loot and one day at a time. Enjoy every minute that is a good one. Laugh at the small things and celebrate every day this side of the sod. I do. Just passed one year since my surgery. Do some volunteer work in a food bank or a nursery school rather than visiting OR’s. Leave that for sick people.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s