Omgomgimsoexcitedimsoexcited!!!! I have my first radiation oncology appointment scheduled! Ok I know that’s a really weird thing to get super excited about, but remember who we’re talking about here – ME. And I get excited when things get put on the calendar. It makes them real!
Having an appointment scheduled with Dr. Zap means that I’m getting just a little closer to the next phase in my super-fun cancer lifestyle. And that next phase is radiation!
Way back in September I first called Dr. Zap’s office to find out how this all works. The woman I spoke to was helpful and talked me through it, but basically told me I was getting ahead of myself and I should call back closer to the end of chemo.
So I called again yesterday and explained that my LAST CHEMO INFUSION (woohoo!) is coming up soon, and that I was wondering if it’s a good time to schedule my first consultation with Dr. Zap. I knew that this first appointment should be three weeks after the last chemo day, and that it would be a simulation/mapping/planning session. I explained that I’m really Type A and that I was anxious to get this scheduled; not to mention that all this is happening around the busy holidays. (Of course, they are intentionally not that busy for me this year, but I did not need to tell her that…)
The very friendly woman I spoke to (let’s call her Candy) confirmed my calendar math and said yes, I should expect to see Dr. Zap for my mapping appointment on December 21; but that I’m still getting ahead of myself. First of all, they have to get approval from my health insurance. Secondly, I don’t need to worry about them getting backed up and having trouble getting in to see Dr. Zap, like getting a pediatrician or a dentist appointment, for heaven’s sake; this is CANCER STUFF. Very serious! I did not quite get the logic but I did not argue. We wrapped up the conversation with her saying she’d put in the insurance request and call me back closer to the date to get things scheduled.
That was yesterday morning. In the afternoon, while I was at school picking up the kids, Candy called me back. Apparently the insurance approval had come in quickly, and she said to me, “My goodness I had not even realized it is already mid-November! I can’t believe it’s almost Thanksgiving already. You said your last chemo appointment is in two weeks! You are right, we should get your appointment scheduled now.” Ha!!
At this point I’m all set for an 8:45am appointment with Dr. Zap on December 21. The expectation is that my first radiation treatment will be December 27. From there on out I’ll receive treatment every day they’re open (five days a week except the occasional holiday, such as January 2) for about seven weeks. I know that radiation is no picnic, but as Candy said on the phone, we’re much nicer to you than chemo; it just requires persistence.