The river that is my life continues to be fraught with many big rapids.
Sunday drifted into Monday, and then to Tuesday. There was no great improvement in how I was feeling so I stuck close to home and to my bedroom. On Tuesday afternoon I wandered into another room for a change of scenery and began experiencing an unpleasant tightness and discomfort in my chest. After a round of calls to Dr. D's office, I headed to St. Jo's. Once there, I had to tell my story to the ER doc, which is becoming a problem as this story gets longer and longer. A flurry of calls between Dr. Scheinberg and me and the ER doc and Scheinberg resulted in a CT scan with contrast, something I was resistant to but ultimately relented. I am trying to be mindful of all the radiation that has bombarded my body, and besides, the contrast produces the sensation that you are wetting your pants. The ER doc's initial impression that I was suffering from pericarditis did not pan out, so I was sent home, which was good, but with my problem unresolved, which is bad.
On Wednesday, Scheinberg texted me that he and a radiologist were looking at my scan from the previous evening. And then nothing. No word from Scheinberg on the results. Scheinberg and I did not communicate again until Sunday night, so that left 4 days for me to be concerned. "Be concerned" is a tactful way of describing what I was feeling. Nevertheless, I enjoyed a delicious Thanksgiving lunch with my family, and a spur of the moment jaunt to a North Georgia cabin with John, Brent and his friend, again, for a change of scenery. Despite the rain that never let up, we had fun.
Sunday night Scheinberg and I reconnected and again, he would not reveal what was in the scan. He indicated that we would talk the next morning. "Be concerned" blossomed into something more alarming. Monday morning did not bring the reassurance I was desperately seeking; instead, Scheinberg asked me to come to his office asap. Once there, we talked about the difference between the scan that sent me to the hospital in October, and last week's scan. Apparently, whatever was detected in my right lung in October has gotten worse, and he had already scheduled a bronchoscopy for that afternoon. No discussion. No choices. I was free to do whatever I wanted except eat and drink until I reported to the hospital at 1:30 pm.
Endoscopic procedure No. 3. Four tries to get the IV in. Trouble coming out of the sedative, and violent coughing. The last nurse and I closed the place down at 6:30 and I left with an oxygen tank and more waiting for me when I got home. I was exhausted from the trauma of the day and I slept fine, covered in dachshund. It seemed like there were 10 in the bed last night, instead of 4.
Today I am finding that I need the oxygen to move around and if I am going to talk for more than a few minutes. Scheinberg is still claiming that whatever is in my right lung resembles an infectious disease, such as tuberculosis. That still seems unlikely to me but not to him so he repeated the TB test. Now I wait, patiently or not, for the results of the cultures.
I am too consumed with the task of putting one foot in front of the other to do anything more than a general thankful for all the support I have received from friends, family, colleagues and the medical community. I know you are there for me.
Love to all.