Sunday, August 30, 2015

the (bi)annual panicfest, etc

So, had an MRI. It found something that merited further investigation. A targeted ultrasound found two cysts: one that was definitely benign, and one that contains "debris", which could be harmless calcifications or could be Total Death Cancer (may not have been the doctor's actual words). So they want to do another MRI in three months.
Not. Reassuring.
Adding to the lack-of-fun was the fact that because the ultrasound was performed in the mammography suite, Berowne was forbidden entry, and so I was alone back there, and without the crucial second person asking questions and able to, later, confirm what was said. This is absolutely vital at these types of appointments, and I was really pissed off that they wouldn't let my support person come into the room just because he was male. Especially considering that if the ultrasound had been done down the hall, in Imaging, he would have been expected to accompany me. Grrr.
I am also being transferred between oncologists at the moment, so scheduling even the follow-up appointment is needlessly complicated. Bitch bitch bitch, I know. But this periodic panic has been a thing for four years now, and it gets exhausting.
I have been reading, rather desperately and without patience, as tends to be the case in times of needing-distraction. And in times of "eh, I figure the toddler can roam the downstairs area unattended now", which means keeping a sharp ear peeled. Especially for silence. (She can now reach things near the edge of the kitchen counters. Oh boy.) And in times of feeling the clammy hand of mortality, not just because of the screenings but because this month marks TWENTY YEARS since I arrived at college as a freshman. TWENTY YEARS. Plain and awkward and sure that I was going to be finally appreciated and loved for my brains, instead of having to be "popular" or "outgoing" or "a nice person", only to find that compared to everyone else in that freshman class I had the brains of a mildly advanced sheep. But that is a story for another day. Suffice it to say: I feel old.
The books:

As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust, by Alan Bradley. The Flavia De Luce series is getting kind of weird, but I suppose any premise for keeping an eleven-year-old girl constantly involved in murder investigations would become strained sooner rather than later. In this one Flavia goes to Canada, in an attempt to prevent the per capita murder rate in her tiny English village from surpassing that of Compton, but by the end she is sent home again, and I don't know what Bradley's going to do from here. I'll keep reading them, though, most likely.
The Wench is Dead, by Colin Dexter. An Inspector Morse mystery: the first I've read. Since this one is about said Inspector being bedridden and trying to figure out a centuries-old crime, I don't know if it was at all typical of the series. And the resolution mostly depended on women being naturally vicious and conniving, which didn't sit well. It mostly made me want to re-read The Daughter of Time.
Murder 101, by Faye Kellerman. Unfortunately, this series has crossed a line from "mindless indulgence" to "so badly done it makes me cranky". The supporting characters just get more and more bizarrely self-aware, and talk in sentences no human has ever uttered, and this one had the added unnecessary silliness of having a murder take place in the Massachusetts town described as being next to Medford, but naming said town "Summer Village". (The locals call it "Slummer Village"! Oh ho, so clever, Kellerman!) I mean... really? Why on earth would you bother? Also, if I can remember that ten books ago your heroine had a hysterectomy, then why are you writing a scene in which she theorizes that she might be going through menopause? Eeeesh. What a hot mess.

With Fire and Sword: The Battle of Bunker Hill and the Beginning of the American Revolution, by James L. Nelson. Quite good popular history for where I was at mentally these last few weeks, by which I mean it was probably a little bit dumbed down. I enjoyed it.

Unnatural Death, by Dorothy L. Sayers. I cannot even any more with the early Lord Peter Whimseys, and I'm afraid to re-read the later ones, which I loved as a tween (though that wasn't a word then, because as we've established I'm ancient). They are the most racist things I've ever read this side of a Post-Colonial Literature seminar.

Cleopatra: A Life, by Stacey Schiff. Solid popular history; Schiff does a good job sorting out the probable from the mass of legends around Cleopatra, and presents her conclusions intelligently and interestingly.

And now, as I'm rocking the beginnings of a cold (my usual reaction to a week of living off adrenalin and fretting), I'm going to eat some chicken chili and take a nap. And then treat myself to a Louise Penny even though it's not next in the queue. The decadence! May you all enjoy such luxury.

1 comment:

  1. I suspect it won't comfort you much to hear that it really wasn't long after that August that I started getting intimidated by the collection of actors! who were deep! and stylish! over in PPR.

    (I'm sorry I haven't been commenting lately -- I hate Facebook and avoid it whenever possible -- but I will keep you and your future reassuringly clean MRIs in my thoughts.)