Saturday, June 20, 2009

Personal demons..

A lot of things happened over the last two weeks. Shiney Ahuja (My personal Greek God) raped his maid(I cannot get over this, really!!). India could not even enter the T20 semis. Obama swatted a fly. A lot of people, I personally know, were retrenched in Muscat. Summer vacations officially started in schools. And amidst all this fervent activity, I woke up one morning to find a painful lump in my body. Needless to say all the other attention grabbing headlines just dwindled like an inward spiral through my mind and the lump occupied pride of place.

It was too early to speak out. Early, because I had yet to consult my personal genii.."Google" regarding this, and only then, armoured with a diagnosis as well as a prognosis would I open my mouth. So gently feeling the lump, and taking deep breaths to help evade the panic attacks, I made the morning breakfast.

As soon as I had my escape, I went to the computer, got to the Google screen and typed in as key words - " lump, painful, red" within a fraction of a second, the screen was flooded with sites talking about various cancers. There were listings on cysts and abscesses too, but I gave no importance to those. Cancer is an obsessive word for me and this time I actually had a lump to show for all my fears. further detailed keywords gave further remorseless verdicts.

My condition cannot be explained in words. It will suffice to say that I started hyperventilating. Every few minutes I went to the mirror to check out further aggravation, came back to google some more, went completely into hibernation with the kid's albums and shed a few lonely tears as well. The one friend with whom I could have talked about it was out of town and my cousin was fighting her own demons.

Not a bite went down my throat. Evening saw me headed towards my doctor's chambers. Hubby alongside, absolutely insignificant. What did he know of cancer? All his family ever had was high cholesterol! My family was a different story altogether, name a cancer and we got it!! Finally my name was called and the pleasant smile on the doctor's face was not returned by me. Did not even wish her a good evening. Just plonked myself in front of her and rattled it all. Interspersing every few words with the word Cancer. My voice breaking, my palms sweaty and my mind dizzy with anxiety.

The doctor examined me and smiled. "Its nothing to worry about," she said. "Its just a sub cutaneous abscess". Saying this she patted me and prescribed antibiotics for a week. My husband immediately gave me a look that was supposed to make me feel guilty of having dragged him to the clinic from the all important office, just for a prescription of antibiotics. I returned the look with a smile that said.. nothings been cured yet!!

I did take the antibiotics, researched on abscesses till the wee hours of the dawn, tried to make a connection between cancer and abscess. The stress levels continued to soar, as the antibiotics failed to show any effect on the lump. It grew and the pain increased and a lot of other things including my psyche got hampered.

Four days passed and I was again at the clinic, with a morbid thud in my chest and a reeling brain, I entered the doctor's chamber and insisted on a scan. Again was met by an indulgent smile and another examination. "It just needs to be incised and drained, the antibiotics are not working , so better get it incised, I will refer a surgeon." I almost choked saying, "Please don't hide from me, tell me , it is cancer isn't it?" " No it isn't try not to fret ok." smiled the doctor. The surgeon was referred. The hubby opened his cell to see available dates, I said, "Today, I don't care if the president of the company sacks you for not being available, I have to get it done today." He knew, further discussion was pointless.

Evening came and I was in front of the surgeon, insisting on not going back until the lump was out. Things happened at a fairly fast rate from then, the husband tinkering with his cell, the kids asking whether I will be back alive, the nurses carrying out regulatory tests, the anaesthesist asking for allergies and false tooth. I, grabbing hold of the surgeon and insisting on a biopsy. The surgeon just smiling.

Finally at 9:00 pm I was in the OT. Before passing out the last conversation I had was about cancer and with the anaesthesist. When I regained my sense, I saw just about 15 minutes had passed, and I was drowsy as hell and was being shifted from a stretcher to a bed in the recovery room. The surgeon called my name and the only thing I could say was, "Do a biopsy!"

At 12:30 am that night I came back home. Son was offering to be a very good boy, the daughter was asking whether it hurt, I was being fed chips by one and muffins by the other. My heart was deliriously happy. For the moment I was cured of my nightmare, For the moment I was healthy and devoid of cancer, It was just an abscess after all. The dressings continued and the reports came in giving me a clean chit. Both me and my cousin had won our demons for the time being. we breathed easy till another day when another demon strikes. We got back to joking at our gene pool, and we got back to blogging. We got back to life!!

I know, many of you might not be able to empathise with this write up. But believe me, if the gene pool is the kind I have, fear becomes second nature!