Safe and ultrasound

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Old Paper Texture Relief, by Arrhakis World on Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons

My breasts finally passed muster this morning, after a week of being under suspicion of malfeasance.

I had a mad dash to the imaging place this morning, after J & I got our usual slow start, which was followed by panic and my decision to drop the kids off at school as early as possible (8:30), even though that increased the probability I’d be late for my appointment, which was at 9 in a different neighborhood. The train worked, my legs worked, and I got to the counter at 8:59.

I liked the mammogram tech more today. She was playing oldies and just had a good aura about her. I got the same weird pastie over my nipple as last time, pink designs with a little metal stud in the center. I couldn’t tell whether there was any function to the stud, or just a whimsical addition.

A lot of women complain about mammograms. And having been through quite the rigamarole of imaging over the past couple of years, I must say I agree. In my case the machine has to accommodate a distinct lack of material to be compressed on the plate, which means I’m up cheek to cheek with the machine in what looks like a weird, nonconsensual tango. And then I get to hold my breath.

The sonogram was more comfortable, especially the twenty minutes I was left alone in the dark room lying down and started napping. The actual exam felt kind of weird, digging in deep in places even my bra doesn’t reach. I felt the start of some nausea, actually. And then that was over.

I had to then go back for a couple more mammo images. The tech had changed. No more music. She even forgot to tell me not to breathe, so I reminded myself.

Then I was in the hallway, freezing in my gown for another 20 minutes or so, starting to feel imprisoned in this basement facility with low ceilings, poor HVAC sensors, and more and more women showing up with not enough chairs to seat them.

Then I heard my last name being mangled, and a white man appeared (all the other people working there are women of color). He seemed enormous and very red against the low ceilinged fluorescence.

He took me back to an exam room and I expected the worst. Instead he gave me the best news – the mammogram images were all fine. There was a je ne sais quoi on the sonogram of Lefty, definitely not a mass, so I need to go back in six months for another followup. I’m not going to worry about that.

Now I just wait for that skin biopsy result to come back… but in the meantime, I can stop hating my breasts. And proceed with the twelve other things my phone keeps reminding me to get done today. And drink a beer with dinner tonight.

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