Scanxiety

That is probably a made-up word to you, but every single cancer patient knows what that word means.

It’s the scary feeling before you have your cancer scans done. That could be a CT scan, MRI, PET scan, or some other scan related to checking out any lurking cancer in your body. I am still going every 3 months but by December I should be switching to check-ups once every 6 months. Ironically, I am not looking forward to the long stays away from the Oncologist…

No, I don’t want scans done every three months forever, but I like having that safety net. I hope that my cancer stays gone FOREVER but once you’ve heard the bad news once, it’s hard for your brain to think it won’t happen again. And honestly, I think it would be more devasting hearing it’s back for a multitude of reasons but mainly because now you know what to expect. I had no idea what chemo was like or losing all my hair or having a catheter in my chest but now I do, and I never want to do any of that again.

I can’t speak for others but the scans themselves aren’t that bad. My CT scans usually last around 15-20 minutes (with contrast). I know as I am lying on that table that these results hold my future, but I usually toss that aside when I leave. It’s when I’m sitting in the waiting room of my Oncologist’s office that the anxiety kicks into overdrive. A lot of different memories come back to me when I am in that environment. It’s weird because that place has brought me so much joy and yet so much pain. They have told me some of the best news in the world and some of the worst. The epitome of bittersweet.

I have only been blessed with good news and I wish every cancer patient got to experience that. It’s truly hard living a post-cancer life. To me, it’s worse than having cancer itself because although the cancer has left my body, the thought of it never leaves my mind.

My scans are at the end of this month, so if you are reading this send your good vibes/prayers my way. I would appreciate it! Thanks!

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