“I’m fixing a hole where the rain gets in
And stops my mind from wandering
Where it will go
I’m filling the cracks that ran through the door
And kept my mind from wandering
Where it will go
And it really doesn’t matter if I’m wrong I’m right
Where I belong I’m right
Where I belong”
– Lennon and McCartney
Yesterday was a landmark occasion. MRI, blood tests and a visit with the remarkable Dr. Fadul. The MRI came out looking good in that no visible tumor growth was noted. The Dr. was very pleased.
Amazingly the hole in my brain will remain, which is the cause of some physical imbalance, left-side deficit… but no big deal. This, along with two “full-thickness tears” of my rotator cuffs is of no consequence at this point as long as I can see, hear, touch, taste and smell. The whiteness around the margins of hole, now filled with CSF (cerebral spinal fluid) where the tumor was removed, is leftover irritation from surgery and radiation. While the diagnosis of “incurable and recurrent” remains, that the radiation itself sometimes results in other harmful effects including radiation-induced cancer not showing up until 5-10+ years later, and the Dr. confirming once again that this was a rare cancer especially for an adult (explaining my childlike tendencies) … at least now I can breathe a little more deeply. Relax a little more. Let the anxiety and fear melt away as best I can. My next MRI will occur in May. I have a “headache clinic” coming up to deal with that element.
Libby, Hannah and Barb were with me all along yesterday, as they have been from the start, with the anxiety accumulating like so much snow…the moment of truth was upon us and one of the more moving moments, in addition to hearing the scan results, was the time in between the MRI and the visit with Dr. Fadul. We wandered to the hospital chapel, a small, quiet non-denominational space with a beautiful twenty-foot stained glass window of a New England night-time sky designed by beloved Vermont artist Sabra Field intended to symbolize faith and hope.
We sat there in silence, the gray-blue light of the winter sky pushing through the glass, holding hands, each of us with tears welling in our eyes. What news would this bring? What did the immediate future hold in store for us and how would we manage?
I realized then and there how rare it was for us to simply sit together, silently, with the ones you love. Words needed not be spoken to understand what we were all feeling: love, fear, sadness. But most of all, we had faith and hope. The Milky Way led us there…the Milky Way led us there…