Yesterday was my CT scan appointment at Harefield. Seeing as I am feeling so much more normal and now attempting to be a real adult, I decided I should drive myself there, after all it can’t be that hard…my sisters, knowing me far too well suggested perhaps they come along for the ride, and when I picked them up they were armed with directions and a rather large map, which is just as well because apart from “go on the M25” I didn’t really know where we were headed. I stick by the fact that I was in Harefield whilst they trekked up there continuously therefore it is reasonable that they know better than I do how to get there.
They brought some rather good CDs, with loads of songs that brought back memories of when I was younger bouncing up and down to them, and we sang all the way there. We arrived in plenty of time so went to the nearby pub; a place which became a second home to my family whilst I was in. If there was good news, they would go there to celebrate, if it was bad, they would go to drown their sorrows. Abby squeezed my arm gently as we stood at the bar, and said how strange it was to be standing in there with me, strange but in a good way. We sat at quite a significant table, as it was the one they had all gathered round in excitement the night I was called, but had also wept over on Black Thursday. This time it was just me and my sisters, sitting raising our glasses to the fact that for the first time, all three of us were there together.
We had a lovely lunch and then made our way up to the hospital. I was in nice and quick, and I recognized the radiographer so said hello and after peering at me for a second she confirmed delightedly that she had been on call the night I got my transplant, and oh my goodness I looked so well now! The scanner is a new one, funded recently by an appeal Harefield ran. For anyone that has never seen a CT scanner they are essentially like a giant donut, with a slidey bench which, er slides in through said donut (I bet that mental image is much clearer for you now isn’t it). It has a nice polite voice that says “and breathe in, and hold your breath” whilst some little lights flash and the bench moves slowly through the donut, then “you may breathe normally”. We go through that a couple of times, and that is pretty much all there is to it. As I lay there in between scans, counting the tiles on the ceiling, a man wandered in to pick up some equipment. He appologised for doing so and I said that was fine, so he started chatting whilst he was searching through boxes. He was from the surgery team and asked me if I had been to theatre. Stifling a smile I replied that yes I had been, just a few times (I went every other day for a few weeks for my suction pump) and that I had had my transplant in January. “Ah so you must be Emily! Nice to meet you!” Alarmed at my apparent infamousness, I replied likewise, and we chatted for another minute or two before he returned to theatre and I had the remainder of my scan.
All went smoothly and finished promptly, and I returned to the waiting room where my sisters were sitting browsing the various magazines spread across the table. The whole thing took about half an hour which didn’t really seem worth it for the hour and a half journey we had just made, but it is a very specialized test and hey anything that keeps an eye on these lungs and keeps them working beautifully is fine by me! I should find out the results next week. As we left Harefield, the heavens opened, so we decided to sing “I’m singing in the rain” at the tops of our voices all the way back to the car, and arrived suitably drenched. Thanks to my sisters, I had a really good afternoon. It’s amazing what you can make out of a rather mundane chore when you have the right people with you.