Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Twilight Zone

This experience was a little freaky for me. All at the same time I was anxious, felt my own vulnerability, was humbled by technology and wanted to sleep. It didn't help that there was LOUD whirrrrrring and obscure snap-shot sounds in my ear next to the sound of classic rock. I felt like I had entered a dimension between sci-fi movies and, well, sci-fi movies. Surrounded in a tube of white plastic ... hmmm, the many references I can think of.

I had to get an MRI today. Yes, it has been confirmed - I have a brain - WAHOO. However, what my brain is doing and how my brain is functioning is the question. It isn't drastic or anything, just a thyroid problem, as odd as that sounds for me - one who seems to have endless energy and virtually no weight problems. I went after work. Not the greatest idea I've ever had. Training this week has been the worst. It has been just about as fun as sitting on the lawn watching my grass grow; however, that might be more fun being outside and all. Training has consisted of nothing but wasted time and endless review and repetition. There is only so many times you can do the SAME scenario over and over before you just want to end your own misery. But I digress. Walking into the Neuroscience Center tired as a dog, I plan on sleeping through the process. Little did I know, there would be no opportunity.

I lay down on the MRI bed after they stick me several times with a needle CLAIMING my vain moved and the missed - it's possible, I guess. Then they tell me to listen to music to drown out the noise. Bummer. Next they prepare me for the noise, the process and the absolute need for me to be incredibly still. Uh, oh! I've been so bored all day, I'm ready to run a marathon - this is not going to be easy. I snuggle up on their head rest so I am nice and snug with ear phones on my head. They close the "cage" (yes, it really is a cage - I felt like someone from a horror show like Hannibal being caged up and put away). They push the button and in I slide. I keep my eyes closed because I'm freaked out that I'll suddenly become clausterphobic. Once inside I peek - bad idea. I close my eyes and start concentrating on the music while remembering to breath as the machine starts its whirring and obscure snap-shots. At each pause I don't know what to expect so I listen and it starts howling again. Dang it! I go back to my music.

After a couple breaks to see how I am and twenty minutes later, I realize I haven't moved a muscle, my muscles have been intermittently and involuntarily started twitching in random places for a couple minutes, my right arm has gone numb from the tension I've put on it and my left arm has gone numb, my butt cheeks are falling asleep and there is something sharp poking at the back of my skull. Think, think! "I deserve to eat dinner at The Pie tonight!" "Hmm, how to talk my husband into that one." "Well, at least I can talk him into Wendy's." "Never heard this song before." "Rarrrr, I'm Hannibal." "Ok, freaky, moving on."

Ugh, finally, thirty or so minutes later and we're done! Appartenly, stiffening my entire body trying not to hyperventilate or pass out from NOT breathing, and concentrating on staying motionless, I did "GREAT." I get off the table, move a few muscles and dizzily stumble my way to change. Glad that is over!

What a feeling! Completely surrounded by advanced technology using magnetic and radio waves - so much so the nurses have to be a room away - and yet, trapped all at the same time. I am definately a lay-man. I know nothing about modern science and the advances of the day. Incredible. Though, I never want to do that again!

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