Now don't freak out...

The woman you love most in the whole, wide world; the woman that you would willingly give up perfectly good body parts for; the woman about whom you have gut-chilling, tear-spilling nightmares involving the premature death of; the woman that you know is probably the only person who will ever love the you that comes out when all your insecurities and paranoias surface...

What do you suppose your reaction would be when the woman you love calls you after an appointment with a specialist and the first words out of your mouth are: "So, what did the doctor say?" and the first words out of her mouth are: "Now don't freak out, but"?

Well, in that case I think the appropriate response would be to FREAK THE FUCK OUT. Don't you?

Outwardly I remained calm, I think. I asked a lot of ridiculous questions in with the very pertinent ones. And then I hung up the phone and went to speak to my boss about some time off (I have only a few hours of leave that I've managed to bank up since the pneumonia wiped my leave out). I got up from my reception desk, walked through one set of 10 foot tall bullet-proof glass doors, through the marble and steel-clad elevator lobby, through another set of 10 foot tall bullet-proof glass doors into the non-public part of the office and passed a co-worker. I thought I was being admirably calm. She asked me how I was, when I told her I was fine, she said she could tell something was wrong from my face. I am not close to my co-workers, they normally can't tell how I'm feeling. I must have looked very shaken for her to pick up that something was wrong. I told her what I had just learned, walked to my boss' office, saw that he wasn't there and retraced my steps to come upon her telling a group of my co-workers. She was embarrassed, I was too numb to care.

Yesterday Kristin went to see an ENT for this sinus infection she's had for the past 8 weeks or longer despite a cumulative 30 days of the kind of antibiotics that would kill a bull moose, were a bull moose a form of bacteria, and another 20 or so days on just regular antibiotics. Three weeks ago our family doctor was shocked that Kristin was still sick, and they x-rayed her sinuses... a lot of infection -- a lot of infection -- but otherwise it was normal, you know, despite the hella lot of infection. So Kristin scheduled the ENT visit; yesterday was the first day they could get her in.

This is how her visit went:
First she talked to the nurse. The nurse looked sympathetic and a bit worried.
Then she talked to a P.A. The P.A. looked alarmed.
Then the specialist came in. The specialist looked concerned and ordered a cat scan.

They shot horrible-tasting stuff up Kristin's nose and hauled her off to the cat scan machine. She sat in the machine and it started to turn. After a few minutes the image came up before the technician. The technician looked at it for a moment and said, "Oh my! I'll be right back with the doctor." And then left and returned with not one but three specialists. Three specialists who sat there and discussed the situation, and Kristin, as if she weren't sitting right there. Three specialists who were extremely alarmed at what they were seeing.

A mass. A mass that looks like a tumor. A mass that wasn't there three weeks ago. It is nearly completely filling up her entire right sinus cavity. The doctors mentioned cancer as a distinct possibility. Not a certainty, no, but still. They want it removed as quickly as possible and tested. These are specialists. They've seen bad. They know what bad looks like. This is not just a General Practicioner seeing something unusual and freaking out.

The doctor sent her over to a woman to have the surgery scheduled. The woman pulled up the calendar and looked at the first available date. January 18th. Kristin said she thinks the doctor wanted the surgery sooner than that (also thinking that by January 18th she'll be back in the thick of school and practicum and work). The woman said that January 18th is the absolute soonest they can fit her in. The doctor came back over to see how the scheduling was going and when he heard that the surgery is scheduled for January 18th he got very firm and said, "No, I said immediately." The scheduler showed him the schedule that's chock full. He looked at it for a moment and then: "cancel that tonsillectomy on Monday, we need to get her in."

Somewhere out there, some person's just been told that they have to keep their tonsils until January 18th.

In addition to the removal of the lump, Kristin has extra sinuses that they are going to take care of. I'm not sure if that means they're going to remove them, or close them up, or whatever. She was told that the recovery time on this surgery is 1 to 2 weeks. Black eyes for Christmas, hoorah!

We don't know how long until we know if the lump is benign or malignant. I'm hoping that we know right away... like they get in there and discover that it's just a big, hard booger. Or a cyst. Yeah. Just a cyst. Or that they'll come out of the surgery and tell me that it was just a swollen bean that's been in there, growing, since she was a kid and her mother told her not to stick beans up her nose. Or maybe it's a pearl. Maybe some bit of grit got up there and her body's been coating it coating it coating it in layers of pearlessence. We can have it made into a piece of jewelry for Julia.

What I am trying hard not to think of is that when we looked up cancer of the sinus cavity one of the professions at risk to develop the disease is that of Crime Scene Technician... because of the fingerprint powder. And how when Kristin was a crime scene tech she would come home after her shift and blow and blow and blow black crud out that she'd inhaled (the police department wouldn't provide masks) and how she's been saying for years that her sinuses haven't been the same since. I'm not thinking about that. I'm not. It's just a cyst. It's just a tiny balloon. It's just a hardened and out-of-place gummi bear. It's just a scare.

I love her so much. Last night I kissed her cheekbone over the mysterious mass and held her. All night I kept waking from the kind of dreams that wake you up in a cold sweat. And I would turn to her and listen to her breath and tuck my arm around her body and try to fall back to sleep. And Julia was kind enough to sleep through and not disturb us.

Posted by Trista @ 3:00 PM

Read or Post a Comment

Oh, Trista. Oh, Kristin. I am holding your whole family in the light and hoping that it is benign. Let us know if cookies or distraction would help.

Posted by Blogger Jen @ 9:35 AM #

oh fuck! Sending MUCH love and light to you at this time, and bean from childhood vibes.

I'm putting her on the "refuah Shlemah" list for our Shul. RIGHT NOW.

Posted by Blogger Shelli @ 9:48 AM #

Yikes. We'll be thinking of you guys sending you love.

Posted by Anonymous jenny @ 9:52 AM #

Trista & Kristin, I'm sending all my love & light, and positive thoughts, and every good thing I can possibly summon up, and sending it all your way.

Posted by Blogger Faith @ 10:09 AM #

Holy fuck. Our thoughts are with you both....I don't have anything to offer but our prayers for an easy surgery, a quick recovery, and good news at the end of the journey.

Posted by Blogger J @ 10:20 AM #

Big hugs to you both. Thinking of you.

Posted by Blogger Kwynne @ 10:34 AM #

Jesus. I'm so sorry. I hope everything will be OK. I'm sure it will. You're both in my thougths.

Posted by Blogger Nik @ 10:57 AM #

Oh my god.

There are just no words.

I am sorry. I am willing it to be a bean. I am horrified that crime scene techs don't get masks. I am loving your family and praying that you are all healthy.

Posted by Anonymous Liza @ 11:25 AM #

How impossibly scary. I will have a confab with the universe to tell it that this is NOT acceptable. It better be a pearl up there.

Seriously though, you are all in my thoughts. Sending super healing hugs your way. xoxo.

Posted by Blogger b. @ 11:30 AM #

We are thinking of all three of you and sending our love.


Posted by Blogger Sarah and BB @ 11:34 AM #

Thinking of you.

Posted by Blogger Kiker @ 11:34 AM #

I vote for the gummi bear.

I'll be praying and crossing all crossable digits. Keep us posted.

Posted by Anonymous Pronoia @ 11:49 AM #

We will be thinking about you over this scary weekend of not knowing what it is.

I hope it is a pearl.

Posted by Blogger hope @ 11:53 AM #

Lots of love to you 3. *hug*

Posted by Blogger Blondie @ 11:59 AM #

I am freaking out for you. And holding you all in the light. So sorry you have to deal with this.

Posted by Blogger ms.bri @ 11:59 AM #

Sending you and Kristen well wishes and a speedy recovery. Hopefully the surgeon will have a good feel for what the heck it is when he removes it Monday. Will look forward to good news on Monday!!

Posted by Anonymous amy @ 12:24 PM #

Oh my gosh, why don't you guys tell us these things before I have to read it on your blog. That is so scary, and I hope everything is okay. If you need anything........ just let us know, please!

Posted by Anonymous merr @ 12:47 PM #

i know firsthand there is nothing I can do to make this any easier for either of you. I'm so sorry. Monday is not too far away, and I hope she is handling the anxiety. I hope you are too. I wish my arms could stretch to Utah because you would be in them right now. Damnit. Why?
hugs to you

Posted by Anonymous Rae @ 12:57 PM #

Love love love love love love love you you all. Deep breath breath breath breath breath breath. I will go right now and sit and send much much love and health to you. Many are behind you.

Posted by Anonymous Polly P @ 1:45 PM #

Damn, Damn, Damn. It's an old bean.


Do you need someone to sit with you on Monday. I can so please let me know.

Fingers crossed.

Posted by Blogger WendyLou @ 1:48 PM #

i think it's perfectly reasonable to freak right the fuck out about that. when one's beloved starts snorting gummibears in her sleep (because if she'd done it while she was awake, she'd remember) it is kind of panic inducing.

i am thinking of you all. let us know what color gummibear it was when you know?

*hugs and more hugs and more hugs*

Posted by Blogger betsyl @ 2:27 PM #

You're both in my thoughts.

Posted by Blogger K. @ 2:41 PM #

I'm lighting a candle for you and Kristin and Julia. I'll keep it lit.


Posted by Blogger Blue @ 3:15 PM #

Holy crap, Trista.

Sending all my warm fuzzy energy your way. I will be thinking of you guys on Monday and wish I could be there to give you a hug in person.

Posted by Blogger art-sweet @ 3:16 PM #

You and your family are in my thoughts. I will pray for good news after Monday's surgery.

Posted by Blogger Co @ 3:25 PM #

praying and thinking of you if you need anything from NY give a shout out

Posted by Blogger Sophia @ 3:39 PM #

HOly fucking god. I am just in total shock and sending you all so much love. Love, love and more love.

Posted by Blogger charlotte @ 4:00 PM #

All teary and hopeful (and a little freaked out on your behalf), but sending so much positive healing light your way. Love to all three of you. Love, love, love.

Posted by Blogger hd @ 4:37 PM #

Oh sweetie - what a dreadful time for your family. I'm so hoping that they go in there and just find some weird polyp that's grown lots because of the infection. Sinuses are very strange things! Fingers crossed and lots of hugs from us - I'm so glad for you that Monday is so soon and results will be on their way in no time.

Posted by Blogger Mermaidgrrrl @ 4:55 PM #

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Posted by Blogger Grrlscout @ 5:38 PM #

Crap. I'm so so sorry. We will keep you and Kristin and Julia all in our thoughts.

Posted by Blogger Grrlscout @ 5:40 PM #

dont really know either of you, but read your blog pretty faithfully. and i have loved someone like you love kristin.

sending you all my love and strength and prayers...and big time hopes it's the bean her ma told her never to put up her nose.

more love and hugs...

Posted by Blogger ladybug @ 6:00 PM #

PS - prayers for the docs and nurses taking care of kristin :}

Posted by Blogger ladybug @ 6:02 PM #

Longtime lurker sending good thoughts and crossing the hell out of my fingers for you and Kristen.

Posted by Anonymous Jen in NY @ 6:56 PM #

It is the world's largest booger and she is going to become famous when she gets into the Guinness Book of World Records with it and you will become famous-by-osmosis as the Booger Lady's Wife.

I am sending lots and lots of good thoughts in your direction. Love is what gets you through when shit like this happens and you have a whole lot of that in your life, so you will be OK. You plural. All three of you. You will be OK.

Posted by Blogger Anne @ 8:21 PM #

never a better time than now for my screen name; what the f*ck?! it's the fucking worst when the technican comes back with a doctor or tow but three? it has to be something weird and not dangerous. i vote for giant calcified mucus ball.

Posted by Blogger whatthef*ck @ 8:46 PM #

I'll be holding my breath with you both and hoping for the best.

Posted by Blogger Melessa @ 10:22 PM #

Wow. My thoughts go out to you, Kristin and Julia this weekend. I'll be hoping for good news on Monday and that you have the strength to get through this challenging time!

Posted by Blogger Mandy @ 11:32 PM #

We'll be thinking lots of gummy bear/pearl/bean thoughts for you this weekend and crossing everything that can be crossed...

Posted by Blogger Gretch @ 4:05 AM #

What hell. I'm so sorry you are both having to deal with this. I am sending my prayers and good thoughts your way and will continue to do so.

Posted by Blogger lagiulia @ 4:12 AM #

Trista and Kristin, I'm so sorry you're facing this. Will be thinking of you on Monday. I can't imagine what you must be feeling right now.

Posted by Anonymous Shana @ 4:27 AM #

oh my god. I am in shock.
I had no idea you guys were going through this & now I just want to light tons of candles and pray for all of you.

Posted by Blogger Calliope @ 7:50 AM #

Oh my goodness. Sending so much love your way xxxxxx

Posted by Blogger Tamsin @ 8:40 AM #

I'm a friend of Liza's and a two time breast cancer survivor (not to mention cervical cancer). So I don't know you but I know what you're going through and my hope and heart are with you. The waiting is the worst part. I wish you luck and quick answers.
Sandra Stark

Posted by Anonymous Sandra Stark @ 9:21 AM #

Oh Trista. Hoping hoping hoping for giant booger.

Posted by Blogger Lo @ 9:27 AM #

Oh....Keeping all of you in my thoughts.

Posted by Blogger susan @ 9:41 AM #

Love & light all around.

(And, pardon me for sounding like a litigious bitch, but even if it is only the world's largest booger, I'm thinking the po-po owe yous because there's just no reason in the world not to provide workers with protection from irritants, carcinogens, or toxins of any kind; I don't care how much more tax I'd have to pay to put a respirator on every public servant out there.)

Posted by Blogger zilla @ 1:23 PM #

how scary! warm thoughts and such heading your way!

Posted by Blogger party b @ 1:52 PM #

I am so sorry you have to go through this. Hopefully it will be over with on Monday. Sending every good thought I have your way . . .

Posted by Blogger Clover @ 2:08 PM #

I am sorry things are so stressful. I am hoping along with the others that it is nothing to scary. Came here via Hydrandras. Noticed you mentioned the author Melissa Scott on your profile - the science fiction writer? I'm on a list with her.

Posted by Blogger Dharma @ 5:25 PM #

Oh! Trista! I am sorry your family is going through this. I am holding you all in my thoughts, and sending positive thoughts your way and healthy thoughts to Kristin. Big hugs...

Posted by Anonymous Anne @ 6:07 PM #

Oh Trista! I'm so sorry you and Kristen are going through this. I hope it's nothing at all and this will just have been a reminder to each of you to be good to each other. When is the surgery?

Posted by Blogger M. @ 8:18 PM #

I'm so sorry you two are going through this.

Posted by Blogger cocoa @ 3:34 PM #

sending lots and LOTS of good thoughts your way... and then some more...

martha (inbedwithamosquito.net)

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ 5:10 PM #

I'm really glad the MD pushed and got Kristen in ASAP. I'm seriously hoping for the absolute best outcome, that this will only be one of those horrible scares that make us all hold our loved ones tighter and remind us how thankful we are for each other.

Here's to the biopsy being something benign and a nice, clean removal of that nasty little bit. Hang in there.

Posted by Blogger Sacha @ 10:26 PM #

Oh my God!! that's shocking!! I'll be thinking of you and Kristin.

Lots of love to you guys, you'll see everything will be fine.

Posted by Blogger Sublime @ 10:58 AM #

I was just sent here via Shelli's blog. I do not know you--but we are ALL from the same family. I send you love and light and my very best wishes.

Posted by Anonymous Nina @ 8:58 AM #
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