Saturday, October 31, 2009

It's a Beautiful Day

As I write this we are at the boat, sheltered from the drizzle and gray skies. I really needed a change of scenery, and it has been almost two months since I’ve been on Curlew, so we decided to come for the weekend. Sun, Sun oh where for art thou, Sun? The weather in Philadelphia has been so dreary for so long, I pity anyone who suffers from depression. Thierry said it was beginning to feel like Amsterdam.

Speaking of Philadelphia, we have been caught up in the World Series playoffs. Yes, even Thierry who is NOT a sports fan has been eagerly awaiting the next game in the playoff series and wants the Phillies to beat NY. I too am excited, especially now, since I personally “know” so many of the players, having gotten their autographs in Denver. We had to seriously consider our trip to Baltimore since we have limited TV service on board. We do not have cable, nor do we have satellite TV – as do many modern boaters. We rely on the old digital TV box to deliver our service. We may even have to go to a bar to watch the games!

This past Wednesday I had the PT/CT’s and MRI’s that the doctor ordered. Fortunately I had a great technician; she was able to get the IV in the first time. For two of the tests, they had to inject a chemical during the procedures. All of these machines amaze me – what they do – how they are able to see inside your body and provide such detailed images of your bones and organs. I would love to have someone explain to me how these machines work – both the hardware and software.

The MRI was an open design – unlike the old machines that made you feel like you were in a coffin. They still make an incredible amount of noise. They give you headsets and pump in music to limit the effect of the noise. I requested some rock (jokingly) – which she honored – and played a U2 CD. The first song was Beautiful Day, which helped get me to my special place, which helped me cope with my final test of the day. (I’m making that my theme song!)

As you can imagine, my body was imaged from my head down to my knees. There was a lot of duplication in the imaging of certain body parts, but apparently, certain scans are better at providing views of certain organs. I remember one provides better images of the liver (I forget which). We’ll see Thursday what the verdict is.

For one of the scans I had to fill my lungs and hold my breath. For the MRI I had to breath in, breath out and hold. That was tricky! I was listening to the pounding coming first from the lower right side of the machine, then from the upper left side and at a different pitch from the other, trying not to count the beats (which to me was marking the passage of time), and wondering what would happen if I breathed before the little voice came on giving me permission. It was a little unnerving – I think it’s easier to hold your breath in than not breath. I began to wonder if this is what it feels like under water. Is this what it feels like to drown? I managed to push these thoughts aside, but was relieved when that part of the test was over.

I’ll probably be getting tested like this on a regular basis for a while. I wonder if I’ll get used to it. This was my week off from chemo. It is amazing how great I feel after a seven day break, almost normal. We’re going to take a ride down to Annapolis this afternoon, and maybe tomorrow we’ll visit a museum in Baltimore, the Walters, which I have never been to. Last night we went to the Baltimore Symphony and heard a wonderful performance of Scheherazade, Adams’ violin concertos (contemporary) and the Firebird Suite.

It has been a dreary week weather-wise, but overall a good one! If you need a pick-me-up, here’s a link to U2’s Beautiful Day:


Thierry said...

GO PHILLIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JudyS said...

Yahoo - Go Phillies! I think you can, I think you can, I KNOW you can!