Comforting sounds in different circumstances, not too loud, a pleasantness that on a typical day would have me fighting the sandman for consciousness. A glance up at the inch wide, six inch long window facing me revealed a glowing orange light, the mechanism inside the tube above me turning quickly behind the window. Next to the window was a sticker warning me to avoid looking directly inside the window at the laser radiation inside. My right hand sensed the cold metal of the machine under my palm, placed there a few moments ago when the female technician had instructed me to do so. Sharp warmth coursed down my arm from an IV, moving along to my mouth, down the other side of my body to my groin, just as I was told would happen. Confirming the information I had received a few minutes earlier, that warmth turned to a burning sensation not quite like anything I had felt before. I concentrated on the faint vanilla taste of the thick white smoothie I had drank during the previous hour, the taste mingling with the burning sensation in my mouth.
There is a serenity that filled my mind as I lay inside that machine, strange in that I knew it was taking photos of my innards, scanning to help the doctors figure out what is going on to make me feel the constant nausea. A few hours before my doctor had announced that what the hospital had told me last Thursday is false. There is nothing wrong with my gall bladder even though there are stones inside said organ. Everyone has them there or at least most do. My body shows no signs of distress and vital signs are strong. Doc Gary was concerned that it could be something else, so he did not want to waste time, sent me to the lab to have blood drawn for tests, then to the hospital for a CT scan. That was fine. I just want to find out what is wrong, do what I need to do to correct what is wrong, and move on to my normal life of work, bicycle riding, baseball, and fatherhood. Laying inside that whirring and humming tube was going to help me achieve that healing task, so I was at peace with it.
A tinny female voice instructed me to take a deep breath and hold it. I felt like I was in a science fiction movie. The table I was lying on moved as the technician adjusted my position from her place behind a glass wall behind me. The whir turned to a low hum as the machine shut down, the tech came out to remove the IV, give me a few more instructions, then asked me to pull my pants up. I was done. I signed a form then followed her out the doors of the scan room, down a few hallways to the waiting room. She told me the doctor would have the results of the scan and talk to me in a few minutes.
She was right. A few minutes later the receptionist called my name and took me to a small private room connected to the lobby, instructed me to wait next to the phone in the room as she closed the door behind me. A few moments later the phone rang.
“You’re fine. Just like your doctor said there is no sign of distress. I doubt it is the stones that are your problem. Frankly, what is probably going on here is stress. Your doctor has already given you instructions regarding a pill for your stomach. Let’s stick with those instructions. Do the two week dosage.”
And that was it. The diagnosis was what I expected — Steve is a worry wart. Yeah, I have plenty to be anxious about, but truth is that I am turning that focus inward too much, so easy to do. I understand why God warns us not to get lost in worry, let him take care of the small and big stuff. I’m no lily of the field or a bird, but I get the idea.
So why in the world did I get a call yesterday with a referral to a surgeon to have my gall bladder removed? Gaaaaaah. I suppose that explains the constant nausea that worsened as the day went on, has not gone away. Dang it.
It sucks getting “old”. It sucks more worrying about it.
Oh, and GO CARDINALS!