Today, I sat in a small waiting room surrounded by other people looking equally as nervous as me. I waited for the iodine drink that I needed to have before my thyroid scan tomorrow. Over the next day, the drink will work it’s magic, creeping into my thyroid and lighting it up like a Christmas tree. Well, at least I hope it lights up. If the tumours glow, then I have Grave’s disease. If they don’t, I have cancer.
In the room, someone drummed their fingernails on an end table; another person repeatedly took small sips of water from the tiniest cup on the planet, while a little girl asked her mom fourteen times if it was all over yet. Seriously, fourteen times; I counted. We were all a bit nervous because we were about to drink dangerous fluids, meaning, those who administer it have to be careful to protect themselves.
I was called into a room and a man came in, carrying the drink in a small metal container marked with that familiar sign of something nuclear. His gloved hand placed the drink down so carefully and smoothly that he did must do this dozens of times a day. I was then given very specific instructions. The drink would taste like water and I was to sip it all with a straw, then the bottle would be refilled with water twice and each time I had to drain the cup, making that slurping sound with the straw in a way that my dad always frowned upon when he was teaching me my manners.
And that was that – simple as could be! It tasted like lukewarm water, just as he said it would. But I couldn’t help leaving the room, wondering if I was glowing.
I get the results from all my tests on Monday after an appointment with the endocrinologist – I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous. But at the very least, I’m excited to get answers and get on some kind of treatment plan. Then I can make plans. I can go out and go to the beach. I can swim and go for long evening walks. I could make friends. My family and fiancé can come visit. I can have a life again.
So today, I’m radioactive. It’s a bit weird, but I can’t help but feel butterflies, because I know this is one step closer to being on the mend.