Thursday, February 18, 2010

That time I was radioactive.

I am out of the clink!  And probably don't have cancer anymore.  We have to wait on some scans and some bloodwork but thinking about it will freak us out so we're just going to go with yes and move on to telling you about my incarceration.

Ok so.  They gave me my own little lead-lined room with a teeny tv and a bathroom that I could contaminate to my heart's content.  The walls were cheery and yellow and Joel had sent me with some spring-in-a-pot (tulips! daffodils! crocuses! those asparagusy-looking flowers that bloom into a bunch of bitty purple ones!) and I had two windows that overlooked the hospital grounds that I could open to flush out the hospital air.  It's like they were begging me not to go crazy in there.  Also, it was sunny.

The first RN they sent to install my IV couldn't have been more than 25 and had flunked out of Teeeny Veins 101.  He spent a few minutes poking around my right arm, and then poked around in my left arm for a long while, and then he hit a nerve which was like rapping my funnybone HARD, only worse and shooting into my thumb, and then he threw in the towel because I was getting fainty.  Like I do.  And guys, I am the valedictorian of getting fainty and not actually fainting, I KNOW there's nothing you can do besides lie down and take deep breaths and put a cool cloth on your forehead, but he looks at me from the door and is all, Just try to, you know, breathe.  Which, THANKS now why don't you go get another tattoo, child.

And then they sent in the fairy godmother of IV nurses and she gave a good stab and was in.  I told her she could put in my IVs any time.

And then they took a BUNCH of blood and we watched women's snowboard cross on my tiny tv and joked about how slow my blood moves, which is why I'm bad at donating it (see also, fainting).

And then the doctor came in from nuclear medicine and this was the best part, because she had on the lead bib and gloves and whatall, and one of those heavy yellow cylindrical canisters like in spy films and when she opened it it went *shhhhunk* and I expected steam to pour out but none did.  She took out a really boring-looking pill bottle and put it on my table and then immediately backed into the hall, watching me from the doorway.  Go ahead and swallow the pill in there, she says.  Don't shake it into your hand, you don't want to touch it.  But I am GOING to touch it with my STOMACH, which I sort of thought was the point?  Science makes no sense.

And they let me stew in my own radioactive juices for about 10 minutes before coming in to scan me, and the scanner beeped over my stomach like I had pennies in there.

And that was sort of it.  I sat in my room and watched tv and the nurses brought me food periodically and I tell you what, plain old hospital food has nothing on iodine-free hospital food for grossness.  Because for lunch it was a slice of grey, flavorless turkey between two slices of dry, iodine-free bread and then for dinner it was a slice of grey, flavorless turkey atop some soggy, unseasoned rice and some steamed carrots (also unseasoned).  The next day was a ditto for both meals except that beans were subbed in for the carrots for dinner.  And I never got any yogurt or muffins or jello or anything hospital-delicious (which is different than regular-delicious, and is a matter of relativity).  It is making me throw up in my mouth to think of it, let us move on.

Some kids from Joel's class came by for a visit Tuesday afternoon, but they didn't wear plastic booties over their shoes (because no one told them to) and got an ass-chewing from the nurse, and then I got an ass-chewing for letting them in, and then the nurse sent a doc from nuclear medicine to give me an ass-chewing but she was just all, Ehhh, don't do it again.  And I don't really understand, because unless you're in the habit of walking around the house in your shoes and then licking the floor, I don't see how booties will help you.  Anyway, they had to stay two meters away from me, as did Joel when he came later, which was hard because my room was about two meters long.  I curled up on one end of my bed and did my best not to give any of them cancer.

And then the nuke med doc came in on Wednesday and scanned me again and my radiation levels were waaaaaaaaay down because I'd been drinking ALL of the waters and juices (I got two waters and two juices with every meal, and more with snacks.  Also, many laxatives, to which my poos are apparently immune) and had flushed the hell out of my kidneys.  I was technically safe to wander free among the public, but they kept me for another twenty-four hours because hospitals are sadists.  This gave everyone time to come visit me again and wear booties this time.

There was a fly in my room at one point and I was going to try to catch him so I could either kill him with my mind or gain his powers (flying, multi-faceted eyes) but he got out the window.  I also petted my flowers to try to turn them into mutants, but I guess I wasn't there long enough. 

I was there long enough to get horribly stir-crazy.  Small rooms and no salt makes you something something.  I'd been pent up for so long (ok, two days, but I was pinned to my bed with THE LETHARGY for three days before that) that by the time they let me out I was all FIDDLE-DEE!  Let my exhaustion be damned!  And I spun myself home and picked up a donut on the way and ate it before I'd made it half a block and then Joel and I ordered a bacon-chicken-bbq-pizza for lunch because it encompasses all the things I couldn't eat before (mmmmmmmmmpork products! condiments! cheese!) and then I slipped into a food induced coma and now I can't leave the couch, because I am actually really exhausted.

This is a long post and I am worn out from the typing (also, I am still digesting that pizza).  Thank you for reading through all this drivel and listening to me bitch about salt for the last month and for sending good vibes my way the last few days.  You are the best ones.


Karen said...

Yay! I am so happy you are back.

Aleta said...

Man, that was long and yet thoroughly amusing. My MOH was radioactive for a thyroid analysis and they just made her use plastic utensils at home with her four roommates. Who says medicine is worse in Canada. =)

Colleen said...

You are amazing at making shitty things hilarious. Please begin writing novels now.

trish said...

"..unless you're in the habit of walking around the house in your shoes and then licking the floor, I don't see how booties will help you."

I've wondered the same exact thing.

Tricia said...

I'm here from Janes blog. i love your attitude and how you can make something as horrible as cancer and being radioactive, funny. I'm happy you are out of the hospital :)

Mum said...

"Good-bye Lazy-ass C. Don't you show your face in this place again." Then she slammed the door and turned the key. (click)

The Celebrated Author said...

Dear Raych whom I don't actually know,
Your face is the best ones.
Much happy-shiny-ness for the you.

leah boldt said...

yah! you're back, baby!!