Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Night of the Living Tumor

The Gods watch out for fools....No one can attest to that more than I. And I have to view some things with a since of humor. If you don't, you just go crazy...crazy in a bad way. I felt the need to get this off my chest to come to terms with it. One more way to stare down fear and punch it in the face.

I have been stationed at Fort Sam Houston,TX for almost a year now, I love it there; Its one of the top Medical training facilities in the U.S. Its in the heart of San Antonio, a city I've had a wild love affair with. And I have been getting some of the best training in the world in the field of Patient Administration.

The only down side to San Antonio is all the allergens. I have been living in a desert environment for the last few years; so suddenly going from High Desert country to swampy Ft Benning,Ga (for Basic Training) to San Antonio, a place that could be classified as a rainforest. Needless to say it wrecked havoc on my sinuses. I was going to the doctor a lot for sinus infections.

Heres where my tale begins.

I was being checked out by one of the Docs at the TMC (Troop Medical Center to you). The usual exam for allergys, checking the nose and throat yadda yadda yada. I thought I would just get told to take my antibiotics, drink water and drive on....
"Whats this"? the Doctor asked, he pointed to something under my left ear.
There was a small lump there...under the skin, a little larger than a dime...It was round like a pinball. I really didn't notice it before....With all the lovely PT I've been doing I had at that point lost sixty pounds. The Doc set up an appointment for a CT scan of my head and neck. He would not say what it could have been; in his profesionalism he did'nt want me to panic. But I've hung around hospitals enough to know what getting a CT scan could mean ...and what they were looking for.

Cancer.....

Commence panic mode!

I was told to go to BAMC (Brooke Army Medical Center: in the Army we have acronyms for everything) I sat in the waiting room, trying to still my mind and calm down. The solder sitting next to me had been to The Sandbox twice. She had had a lump removed from her breast a while back and was getting a scan to see if she was cancer free. Her eyes glittered like clear,blue dimonds. She told me that I was lucky that they found it on a random check up. And, IF I had Cancer it was not a death sentence. She was living proof; and by talking to her I knew this Warrior Woman had a strength and resolve to handle anything. She made me think of Athena, Goddess of Wisdom and War.

They called my name and I stood up, bidding my friend farewell.

"Remember Nietzsche". she said

" Nietzsche"?

"Yes" she smiled ... "what does not kill you, makes you stronger".

They called her name, she stood and shook my hand "Here goes everything". she said with a wry smile and a wink. She went one way down the hall and I went another. (And wherever you are I hope things turned out ok and thank you for being there)
I went down the hall for my tango with destiny. Hmmm, tango with destiny. Sounds like something you would see on the cover of one of those romance novels. Well Fabio wasn't at this party (thankfully).

I am short on time...and I will finish this later tonight.

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