I’m not complaining, but it’s the first time I have an MRI scheduled on Good Friday at 6 p.m.! Yes, 6 p.m.!
Get there (on time) at the requested check in time 5.30 p.m. The Registration Desk at Cleveland Clinic is closed. I go straight to Radiology to check in. I have to read, and sign, all those papers (again) with tons of questions, yes and no answers…Why can’t they keep a record of my previous answers? Or just ask “Did anything change since yesterday?” Duh!
The waiting room is pretty full…even at this hour. I start reading my book “Love, Eat Pray”. Then I see from the corner of my eye a man walking up to the desk with determination in his step, and a stern face. I’m thinking “Oh, interesting…let’s listen in…” He says with a low and very angry voice to the front desk girl “My wife has been waiting here for 2 hours and I want to know what the %*&#%* is going on…I see other people being called ahead of my wife, and if she doesn’t get in soon I’m going to *$&%*^*”
First my heart dropped, and I was selfishly thinking “Shit! I have to wait 2 hours before I can get in!!! Darn!” Then I hear the front desk say they got delayed because of an Emergency. She’s very calm and sorry about the delay. She will call radiology and see what the time delay is exactly… The angry man does not want to hear about any Emergency, or any other “crap”…He walks out in the hallway and comes back again…His voice is louder this time…the front desk girl is still calm (I really admire her!), he walks out again and comes back a third time and “vomits” over the front desk girl again! She’s still calm and collected. Wondering if she’s got an Xanax IV directly into her arm, or something? I’m ready to stand up and defend her…but she doesn’t need me!
I’m wondering where the wife is? Is he really speaking on behalf of his wife, or is he just tired of waiting? Maybe he’s afraid? I’m making up a story that his wife is everything he’s got…She has done everything for him for many, many years, and now he’s afraid of loosing her? He never paid any attention to her, but now when he’s about to lose her…He’s so scared. Sounds good. This is my story, and I’m sticking to it. I forgive his behavior, and sends him love instead!
I’m not upset about the wait anymore, I’m just hoping the person who got everything delayed…”the Emergency” is okay?!?! Sending a healing thought to that person too…whomever he, she is.
My name is called after about one hour (Yay! Not 2 hours! And God Bless the emergency person!) The MRI technician takes me to the X-ray room and says he’s going to prep me. Then we’re going to a “barrack” on the outside of C.C ., to do the MRI. Hm! Interesting! They guy is very nice, but soooo slow…Slow like a Sloth!
It takes forever for him to gather the IV kit, the gauze, the sterile pads, to get me a warm blanket (that’s the first thing I want now! It’s sooo cold in there, and the warm blanket is a “must have”) By now I think the time is 8.30 p.m.
He looks for a vein to insert the IV, and can’t find one…so he turns the hand over, and decides to put it on top of my hand. Then – I see how much he’s shaking. I mean shaking like you have Parkinson’s. I look away, because I don’t want to see the disaster…He tells me “Here comes the little pinch (OK. Got it! Felt it. Not too bad) …and now I’m injecting the saline”. Now I can look. I can tell he’s struggling a little bit from shaking. I ask if I can help him hold the IV, so he can put the tape on the syringe and tube? He says “yes”. We’re working together…Luckily I’m not squeamish…
Out to the Barracks! It’s a portable MRI barrack. He opens the door and it’s even colder in there! Then I see the TUBE! My first thought was “I’m not going in there!” It’s a tiny tube, and I have to lie on my back! And it’s freaking cold…I’m going to shake like a popping popcorn…but frozen!
I said “I need something calming. I’m a little freaked out over this tube”. He said “I’ll give you a sleeping mask, how’s that?” At this point I’m thinking “What are my options? Not do it? Na! This sleeping mask might be okay…cause if I don’t see the tube that are 2 inches from my face, then I can pretend it’s not there!” He also tells me he will give me instructions during the MRI, which means I will be active. That helps.
Here we go! In the tube…and Mr. Sloth takes his time getting the MRI going…I decide I have to think about something that I have mastered, that took a long time, and was grueling. Marathon training!!! That’s it!!!
Talking to myself “Alarm goes off at 3.30 a.m. Who’s going to text first to see if we’re all up? Pling! Ah! Yvette is up. And here’s Sharon – she’s up…and I’m up! Getting dressed, put on a lot of Glide, Water bottles (check) GU energy packs (check) money for more water at the gas station (check). It’s dark outside and we start running…”HOLD YOUR BREATH”. Shit! He scared me!…the MRI tech! Holding my breath for 20 seconds. Done. ”“So, we start jogging down 59th Ave towards Peter’s Road. Yvette and Sharon and I…Only got 22 miles today…“HOLD YOUR BREATH”, ‘The Sloth’ Tech is talking again…and so it goes for 22 miles…
Two more MRI’s to go!