Today my mom and I went back to our doctor’s office for a follow up visit. Nothing big or scary; he just wanted to make sure everything was going fine. This isn’t the same doctor from Miami. This doctor is close to home and he’s the one who “found” the tumor. I’ll always be grateful for that. Stepping back into the office for the first time since learning about the tumor…well, it brought back a lot of memories and flashbacks of that day. For my own sake, I’m going to ‘record’ it here so I won’t forget down the road.
I had been to that office more times than I can even recall. My mom has known that particular doctor since I was a baby. I (and my siblings) have been going to that doctors office since we were newborns. I’ve always been a healthy child/teen so I normally only went for a check up, a phsyical so I could go on a mission trip, or because I had a cold. Because when I catch a cold, it stays for weeks. Still, I had never been there that often. Doctors don’t scare me, but I don’t really like going to visit them. Or dentists. But that’s another story. :)
Anyway. Back in February, when I started to get sick, I went to the doctors office and I’m pretty sure they said to just give it time. But I think we waited until March to go there for the first time. Like I said, normally I get sick and it lasts for a while…and then goes away for a few months. At least.
But I kept throwing up and I kept having sudden diziness. So we went back (I believe it was April by then?). The doctor I saw both of these times…well, she was very nice. But she didn’t believe me and didn’t know what to do next. She had given me medicine to take, but it wasn’t working. In fact, I just felt worse. It was the strangest thing…I would be extremely sick for an entire day, but then would be fine for the next two weeks. Then suddenly the pattern would repeat, and no one knew why.
I don’t blame that doctor for thinking I was faking the symptoms, because there were times where I was totally fine and all seemed back to normal. But it made me so confused. I didn’t understand why it was happening; I knew it wasn’t ‘normal’ to throw up for entire days and then be okay, only to have it keep happening. Eventually I just decided that I’d have to live with it/deal with it until someone figured out what was wrong.
I went to Jamaica, had a wonderful time, and then I came back home. Everything was totally fine until I woke up a few mornings after getting back home (or maybe right after getting back home? I can’t remember anymore). I woke up with the worst pain in my neck. I can’t even describe it to you. I remember crawling into my parents bed and just trying not to cry. I had never felt such intense pain before. I couldn’t move ANY part of my body besides my legs without hurting badly. Moving my head felt impossible because of the pain. So mom took me back to the doctors office to see what they would suggest. This time, we saw a different doctor, and he suggested that we get an MRI done as soon as possible.
I remember going to get the MRI done…and how I didn’t know how to put the gown on. There didn’t appear to be a front or back to the gown…just a thing of fabric. Eventually I found a way to make arm holes out of it, and the (very nice) lady said it was okay. Then she asked what kind of MRI I was having done, and we told her. But the paperwork said something different. They were going to do an MRI of my spine, but the doctor wanted it of my neck and head. The fact that she caught that mistake in the paper work is a God thing, for sure. After getting it all sorted out, I went into the room, stuffed some cotton balls in my ears, and tried to some how make the noises from the machine disappear. It sounded like an alien war was going on. So strange, but so funny. I remember it was about 65 degrees in the room and they put about 4 blankets over me. Seriously. I was so cold. I wish I remembered the lady’s name. I just remember thinking, ‘Wow…she is incredibly nice. She must love her job. I wish everyone was this nice and friendly all the time.’ Was it because she could see from the scans what was in my brain? Maybe. I’ll never know. But I think I’ll always remember how kind she was to me, a complete stranger.
More coming tomorrow. This is already long enough. :) I’ll write about hearing the news in my next post.