Today was radiation appointment number one. Only 34 to go…
It was pretty uneventful, but a weird experience. I checked myself in with my bar coded card, changed into my lovely hospital gown, and read a book for about 10 minutes. They called me in and positioned me on the table. That part is a little awkward, because as they move you, your instinct is to try to help them by moving yourself. Nope. Not allowed. You need to stay perfectly still and let them move you. Once you are in position, you cannot move. It’s not too bad, unless, of course, your nose itches. You aren’t allowed to move so you have to mentally tell the itch to go away, which isn’t very effective.
So while on the table, bare from the waist up, trying not to move, there isn’t much to do but stare at the machinery around you (or the ceiling which is pretty boring) And it’s just freaky. Coming from a testing background, I can’t help but wonder how they test this machinery to make sure it works. How do you know you are getting the right about of radiation? There’s a clear screen on part of the machine and you can see all the moving parts inside. I learned they are made of lead and help direct the radiation to the right places. Again, who tests this stuff? No need to worry, right?
The technicians place you, and then leave the room and run the machine. Then they come back in, do some different configurations, and repeat the process. The machine rotates around you to give you radiation from multiple angles. It makes a noise while the radiation is emitting, and you can’t help but wonder if they’re frying some of your insides. Bzzzzz…
I was happy when they placed a few measuring things on me. When I asked about that (they just kind of stuck them on me… I couldn’t really see what they looked like), they said they do this as a quality control measure. It’s how the physicists make sure I am getting the right about of radiation. Well, that certainly makes me feel a little better. Sort of.
The whole process lasted about 10-12 minutes once I got in there. They said it will go faster once we don’t need to do the quality assurance part. They were also flexible in moving tomorrow’s appointment to an earlier time to allow for Storm Nemo!
I did take my thyrodine and my Epsom salt bath tonight. I think I’m going to go through an awful lot of salt over 35 treatments! But it does give me permission for 20 minutes of relaxing in a warm bath every day!