I just realized that today was my mother’s birthday.  Well, I knew this morning that it was my mother’s birthday, because Princess Zurg reminded me that Coraline came out on DVD today, and so I remembered it was July 21.  The connection I just made is that it was my mother’s birthday today, and today is also the day I got my ultrasound at the Center for Breast Excellence.  There’s a connection because the whole reason I was going to the Center for Breast Excellence was to make sure I don’t die of breast cancer like she did.

Before I got my ultrasound, they took some more mammogram pictures.  The technician assured me that the results of my mammogram and ultrasound would be shown to the radiologist on site so that I would find out before I left what was going on with my breasts.  She said that she could tell I was frightened.  I told her I wasn’t.  It was okay that she thought I was; my body language is ambiguous and I have a flat facial affect, so how is she supposed to know how I feel?  I thought it was sweet that she wanted to alleviate my anxiety.

Anyway, I told her I wasn’t really frightened.  I was thinking about grocery shopping.  My appointment was for 9:30 and was supposed to take about an hour and a half.  I was hoping I’d have time to do the grocery shopping before I had to pick PZ up from school and take her to her drama camp at 12:30.  So I was properly distracted from whatever might have been scaring me.  Unless what was scaring me was the prospect of having to take Elvis and Girlfriend grocery shopping later on in the day.

So I had the mammogram.  Then I went back to the waiting room and read a magazine until it was time for my ultrasound.  The ultrasound was fine.  The jelly was a little too warm, but not so warm that I got a burn and was forced to sue them for damages.  I got a little tired of holding my arm over my head, but other than that, I was quite comfortable.  Ultrasounds aren’t bad at all when you don’t have to drink a gallon of water beforehand and they aren’t sticking the thingy up your whatsit.  Anyway, the technician said she was going to take the pictures to the radiologist and that it would be about five minutes.  This was about 10:55 a.m.  I thought I might still get to go grocery shopping.

At about 11:15 the technician came back and apologized for the wait.  It was okay because I got to take a little nap on the table, but I figured I probably wasn’t going to get to go grocery shopping.  Oh well.  Anyway, a nurse took me to their “consulting room,” and went to get the radiologist, who came in and told me that there was some breast tissue that looked different from the breast tissue surrounding it and that it didn’t look like anything frightening, but she couldn’t tell what it was just by looking at it, and what they do in those situations is they have to biopsy it.  She might have said something else, too, but that was the gist of it, and then she asked me if I had any questions.  Well, no, not unless there’s something I need to know that you haven’t told me.  Ha ha.  I didn’t say that, I just thought it.  In these situations I always feel like I ought to have questions, but I never do.  I’m sure the people asking if I have any questions don’t mind that I have no questions, but I always feel vaguely embarrassed, like my lack of curiosity may indicate an intellectual laziness I oughtn’t to be proud of.

Anyway, the doctor left me to the nurse, who explained to me how a biopsy works and what I can expect on the day I have the procedure.  She was very nice and very thorough.  I’m quite certain that even the most intellectually vigorous person would not have had questions afterward, unless they were just trying to be difficult.  She told me that they’d put a butterfly bandage at the nick site, and that I should put a waterproof bandage over it when I shower the next couple days.  She took a card out of a hat box that had a butterfly bandage and a waterproof bandage on it, just so I’d know what they looked like.  She had all the props for her little talk in that hat box.  It was funny because I noticed the hat box sitting on the table when I first sat down there, and I thought, “That’s a very pretty box.  I wonder what’s in it.”  See, sometimes I am curious about things.  And my curiosity was satisfied, without me having to ask a single question.

She also took out this Ace bandage-like thingy that she said they wrap around your breasts after the procedure for comfort.  It’s supposed to create a sports bra effect–just to keep your breasts from “jiggling around too much.”  So it looks like I’ll be calling in sick at my second job for a couple days.


As luck would have it, they were able to schedule my biopsy for tomorrow afternoon.  I had to do some schedule juggling–that’s juggling, not jiggling–but I figured it was worth it because I’d really like to get it over and done with.  I’m not scared or worried.  The nurse told me that 80 percent of these biopsies come back normal.  I don’t consider myself an unlucky person.  I consider myself an unexceptional person, so I don’t expect to win the lottery, and I don’t expect to be outside of that 80 percent of biopsies performed on normal breast tissue.  I’m just anxious to get to the place where I’ve proven once again that I am unexceptional, and this little tidbit doesn’t have to take up space in my brain anymore–because you know what it looks like in my brain?  It looks like this:

there’s no reason to worry there’s no reason to worry there’s no reason to worry there’s no reason to worry there’s no reason to worry

And frankly, that’s just a waste of my brain space that could be wasted on other, more entertaining stuff.

I would not even be writing about this except that it occurred to me that it was my mother’s birthday today.  She would have been 66.