26 March 2015

There Is No Digression

He began to explain hardened masses that aren't cysts and what else they could be: lymph nodes; anomalies; calcification; tumors. "The bottom line is that it's a hard matter and it didn't disappear."

(Do the hard matters ever disappear? Isn't it always the hard matters that remain?)

--


I feel a bit like the characters in Contact writing this post; sending out a signal, unsure if it will be heard or seen or responded to, or if this is merely now a place of dark matter that was once an existence. Either way, the words that I've been writing in my head, on scraps of paper, in notebooks, in emails to myself over the last few years are finally going to start making it back here.

They have to.

If you've ever used writing as your bloodletting, you know what I mean. If you haven't, I cannot explain it to you. There is, in reality, very little that I can explain to you. But you already know that.

First, to bring you up to speed on The A's: They have grown.

Mercilessly.

Without abandon.

I know that I'm extremely fortunate for that, but I've also come to terms with the reality that my genetic makeup is as such that I'll always be an inhabitant of a world where the sun is immense gratitude and the moon is deep sentiment.

--

The A's now have inside jokes about their mother and her inability to navigate anywhere without first getting lost, her delayed verbal responses to nearly any question and the look on her face when she's trying to understand the Common Core approach.

Their mother is still somewhat of a stranger to me, a person that I'm still not sure I recognize, a person guilty of the same sins as all women that have become mothers: she became a mother. Which is to say that she has possibly not been a seen as a person for a very long time, but rather a being, a form, an anything rather than a fellow human with a life that existed previous to motherhood.

Mom, I am so sorry.

A's, I harbor no resentment or anger, so please don't ever, should you become mothers, find yourself horrified that you've stumbled upon this previously unknown truth and look back and wish you could reverse time and make yourself more aware than you possibly ever could be. You cannot.

This just seems to be how it is in our society; that as women, somehow, when we become parents we lose validity in so many different realms.

--

I would say that I digress, but I no longer believe that there is digression. I formerly thought that my mind contained an infinite amount of endless looping circles that never silenced themselves and spun at rates alarmingly high upon any tool of measurement. Now I believe that my mind contains not circles, but parallel thoughts that aren't necessarily louder than others, nor that have different orbits. Ask me again tomorrow; I might look at you with confusion should you mention that I once believed there was no such thing as digression.

--

"This is the letter we were going to mail you, but you wouldn't have gotten it before you came back." I signed the insurance paperwork and took the envelope.

I didn't open the letter.

There were two areas of concern; one of them "disappeared" when they performed two of the mammogram imaging tests. The other did not.

---

The radiologist appeared with the tech for the fourth image that he wanted her to retrieve. He explained density and opacity. He explained why I needed an ultrasound. He was certain that the ultrasound that they were working me in for that very afternoon would verify that the still-existent, non-disappearing image was merely a cyst; nothing to worry about. I was young. I've heard this before. 

He seemed positive about this. I believed him. Because he believed him. There was no doubt in his face; no offer of false hope in his voice or demeanor. I was young.

The radiologist, not the tech, came in first after the ultrasound. He said, "I'm sorry. I'm surprised to be here. I'm sure you're surprised to see me."

(Sometimes time suspends itself for an indefinite amount of time.)

He began to explain hardened masses that aren't cysts and what else they could be: lymph nodes; anomalies; calcification; tumors. "The bottom line is that it's a hard matter and it didn't disappear."

(Do the hard matters ever disappear? Isn't it always the hard matters that remain?)

"I know what you're thinking here, really, and I can't say anything to give you comfort because what it comes down to is, 'is it cancer, or is it not'? And I can't answer that right now."

"But you're young," he said again.

(Mister, I am not young. 

I am 1,000 years old. I had no idea that it was my soul that felt so heavy as a child until I came across other souls that contained immense weight and recognized them. 

I am not young. I have scars in places that I shouldn't have and worse scars that aren't visible. 

Please, don't tell me that any odds that are good have more merit based upon me being young. 

I'll never get to sleep.)

He gave me the odds of it being malignant: 2-5%. "Small," he said, "very small."

"Never tell me the odds," I half-smiled; the kind of half-smile that you give when you want to appear alright but aren't.

(If you're still reading this, I know that you know which smile I'm talking about.)

He looked at me quizzically and I tipped my head to the side, "Star Wars? Han Solo? 'Never tell me the odds'? It's a quote from the movie?"

"We'll see you in here sometime next week and this part will be over."

"Which part?" I asked.

He paused. He cleared his throat. He looked directly into my eyes and didn't look away when he saw my secrets and my fears and my hopes spilling down my cheeks. I respect him for that; for looking me in the eyes when he said, "The not knowing. The not knowing will be over."

"I'm not sure that ever ends," I replied.

He nodded. I believe it was in agreement. "See you soon," he said.

--

The door closed quietly behind him when he left; it was one of those doors that is so carefully and skillfully constructed that you have to strain to hear the click of it opening or shutting.

And if your eyes were looking elsewhere and if you weren't paying close attention and there were other sounds around you, you could easily be startled to look about and see that some entity had entered or departed while you were completely unaware.

--

Ping.

--

3 comments:

Sarah said...

God. You and I are really similar, aren't we? Down to the OCD. And this:

"I am 1,000 years old. I had no idea that it was my soul that felt so heavy as a child until I came across other souls that contained immense weight and recognized them."

Yep.

So glad you are back.

As for the medical situation, you know I went through it in the fall and am here to tell the tale. Talk to me if you want to.

Ms. Vader said...

Sarah,

You're one of the souls that I was referring to.

If you're ever digging around and find that post...

xoxo.

Cholly said...

I am glad you are back. I have missed your writing and have hoped you were well.
Monica