Pinky's Book Link

Monday, March 17, 2014

Pinky gets a Recall after her Mammogram

Remember last week's post about my devious procrastination of phoning to book an appointment for a bi-annual mammogram and the story of how the Breastscreen nurse had diligently pursued me and locked me into an appointment on Monday?

Well since that fateful rendezvous, I’ve been watching my phone much like a small grey mouse watching a cobra that’s reared up, hood spread and about to strike. 

Every time the phone malevolently ‘hissed’ at me, adrenaline shot through my entire body as I desperately feared it was Breastscreen Queensland calling to deliver bad news.

I found myself ‘forgetting’ to take my phone with me to school or leaving it on silent and only checking it sporadically, breathing a sigh of relief after summoning the courage to peer at the screen and discovering there were no missed calls or messages.

By Friday I’d heard nothing and relaxed, enjoying the weekend, assuming all would be fine.

“Surely they’d have called by now if there was anything wrong,” I bleated piteously to Scotto on Sunday.

So it was with heart thumping wildly in my chest and hands shaking that I answered a private number via Bluetooth as I drove to work at 7:30 this morning.

The nurse’s dulcet tones ominously came over the phone informing me the doctors had reviewed my x-rays and need to see me again… for a few hour of testing… at the hospital... in three days’ time.

Damn! I’d thought I was out of the Neurotic Woods and joyously sprinting towards the sunny clearing.

The voice I used when speaking to the nurse didn’t seem to be coming from my own body. The terror I felt surging through every nerve wasn’t evident in the weirdly chirpy responses shrilling from my tense throat. 

After she hung up the phone I felt as though I’d been in a dream.

I wanted to pull over to the side of the road and call Scotto to hear his comforting voice and reassurances but there was a dirty big semi-trailer tailgating me on the motorway so I breathed deeply and endeavoured to remember what the statistics were for getting a recall.

Was it nine in ten… or one in ten? I hoped it was the former but highly doubted it.

“It’s probably just a cyst!” said my ultra-supportive Deputy Principal when I explained my situation and requested Thursday off.

“It’s probably nothing at all! Just a loose bit of skin or something.” quipped my close friend, Kyles.

Of course I had to ask Sue the Librarian for her thoughts on the matter because librarians know pretty much everything. School librarians are like Yoda.

“Well Pinky,” she said, “The thing with mammograms is that even if it’s the worst case scenario… (you know what she meant; that blood-curdling C word) then a mammogram usually picks it up when it’s at an extremely early stage.”

Therefore, as a believer in self-affirmations, I’ve compiled a ready reckoner of reasons it is nothing to worry about.

1. The recall wasn’t urgent.

2. Nine out of ten recalls after routine mammograms turn out to be nothing.

3. I had a mammogram just over the recommended two years ago so I haven’t left it for too long.

4. It could be a silly old cyst or some other simple, benign annoyance.

5. It could simply be they didn’t get a very good image because Pinky, being a bit of a sook, flinched when the flash bulb went off.

I do recall teetering on one instep with my hand on one hip burlesque style and the opposite boob clamped painfully in a waffle iron. I may have wobbled slightly.

Anyway, there’s no point in worrying is there? There’s nothing I can do to change the prognosis so I may as well stop stressing.

I would like to hear any stories you have though. Have any of you ever had the dreaded recall? Please share.