chapter 18: malaise ya

after my UCLA trip, i was really down.  everything the doctor had told me was bad.  the only positive at this point was that both dr. b. and dr. g. (whose roundtable of radiologists had finally reviewed my images) suspected a cavernous malformation–made up of clumpy blood vessels, as opposed to could-be-cancerous tissue.  if they were right, that was GREAT NEWS.  OUTSTANDING NEWS.  SOME OF THE BEST NEWS.  aside from that, though, things weren’t that “best” at all.  dr. b. told me that the tumor may actually be partly INSIDE my brain, which i hadn’t been told since my initial night in the hospital.  thereafter, i had been led to believe it was on the outside only, which was much better.  but now, here we were, back to “inside.”  i slept, i sat, i drove a little, ran some errands, i even worked a little bit.  but everything i did was partially stilted by a melancholy pensiveness.  not really that of an active mind, but moreso the thoughtfulness of the heart.  a sustained emotion.  you know the way you feel when you sigh?  stop just short of the end.  hold that feeling.  all day long.  sleep with it.  wake up to it.  that’s the way i felt.

my headache was continuing to subside, but i was getting seering pains that would shoot through my head and then disappear.  they were disconcerting.

i had asked dr. b. if i could view my images at home.  he told me of a software program, and i downloaded it and looked through my tests.  i found some of the same ones he had used to teach me about my tumor; i moved the mouse around until i found clear views of it.  i screen-captured them and stared.  and stared.  i sent them to a few people.  i downloaded one to my phone.

the ramifications of my tumor stayed at the forefront of my mind.  no matter what i was doing, i did it within the context of languor over my issue.  my medical consideration was like a discoloring lens over everything i saw, a muffling blanket over everything i heard, a deoxygenating filter over the very air i breathed.  i had to face the realities of what the doctor had described, and that was okay…but as a result, everything around me seemed a little farther away.  and more than that, everything seemed a little…less.

i awaited my appointment with dr. g. back at USC:  he wanted to discuss my test results.  it was several days away.  and the days passed…slowly…

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