Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Almost a non-event

Today I went in for my 9 month post-treatment checkup. I know. I am wondering the same thing - where did the time go? And yet we're also wondering how it could only have been 9 months ago that I stopped treatment. The whole experience seems light-years away. Today's checkup consisted of a fairly simple doctor's visit. They asked a bunch of questions about how I was feeling (I'm fine) if all body functions were normal (which they are). They poked, prodded, listened, and gave me a Pap. I will know in a few days there's any need for follow-up - which I highly doubt. Sounds simple enough. I brought a good book and stayed in my happy cocoon of denial until the whole thing was over. I can sometimes fool myself into thinking that I'm just fine. Maybe even pretending that I'm not really going in for a checkup.

But somewhere in the back of my brain I know that with each doctor's visit comes some level of anxiety and anticipation. I know that's the case for today's visit because I made the mistake of researching survival statistics online again. Grasping at straws hoping to trip across a different answer. If only I could ask the question enough times the results would change. So I ended up idiotically reading some medical journal study on effectiveness of follow-up visits only to find out that a limited percentage of recurrences are actually found via follow-up visits! I stopped reading after I got through the executive summary because I didn't really feel like being depressed the rest of the week. I seem to perpetually waffle between denial and panic waiting for the day when I can finally put this stupid illness in my rear-view mirror once and for all. And even though some recurrences aren't caught in post-treatment checkups I am still going to take comfort in the fact that no news is still WAY better than bad news. And right now there's no news.

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