SCANXIETY

So many years in, when I learn they have a name for this feeling. The feeling I get between MRI scans of the brain. With no pain. Just 3D models of what’s inside. What has been taken and what is growing or even glowing. I thought it would get easier.

That I would never fear another MRI. After so much nice treatment. Cutting, poisoning and radiating. I have run the Western world’s cancer treatment plan for brain tumors. I’ll be going back for seconds and thirds if it gets worse. If it’s a buffet it’s a real curse. When will our lives be turned, upside down. Again. Waiting has always been part of the plan. Not knowing, surviving, not trying to show it. My stomach is upset as I’m typing. It feels like stage fright. Maybe, I should imagine my tumor naked, maybe my doctor too? What are you wearing?

I recently described this feeling to my doctor. I’ve had it for years but it’s had no name. This feeling. Knowing the clinical name for what our family goes through she kind of laughed “Oh, that’s scanxiety.” I asked, “is it natural?” She said, “Oh, yes it’s common.”

You take a lot of anxiety add in a quarterly brain MRI scan. Put the two together and create a new word. Don’t let the patients know what they are feeling was natural, for years. Snanxiety. What a screwed up society? Creating a new word through disease, anxiety and technology. I have scanxiety everybody. No need to worry.

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