Now this is a story all about how
My life got flipped-turned upside down
And I’d like to take a minute
Just sit right there
I’ll tell you how I became the owner of a tumour so rare
My name is Becky, I’m 34 years old and I’ve decided to start a blog! I don’t know if anyone will ever read it, but i’m hoping it will help me somehow through this new journey I have been thrown into. This will be a story about my version of events regarding my recent diagnosis of an intraosseous meningioma (i’m getting really good at spelling and pronouncing this now!)
My journey starts in my GP’s office on Monday 19th December 2016…………….. I noticed a lump growing on my left temple which was hard and getting bigger; albeit fairly slowly. I was getting very painful headaches with sickness and aura’s (funny zig zag lights in my eye?!) A lot like migraines apparently. So I went to the GP to have myself checked out, mainly on the persuasion of my boyfriend whom was getting increasingly worried about me. I had the day off work and decided to call for an appointment. Initially my GP thought I was going to arrive with some type of cyst that could be easily removed but after our consultation, she realised soon enough that it wasn’t a cyst but may actually be something much more sinister. I was told I would have a special scan that looked at the bone and a letter would be in the post to me shortly with an appointment. This was at 10am that day. At 2pm I received a phone call from a specialist hospital some 47 miles away from where i live. This rang alarm bells in my head straight away, i knew something was a miss if they hadn’t booked me in at my local hospital which was only 6 miles away?! I was told i would be having a MRI scan on the 21st December in just 2 days time….eeeekkkkkk!! Followed by an appointment with the consultant in oncology.
Okay, so i used to work in our local hospital in the outpatients department and i know that if an urgent referral is passed, then you have to be seen within a 2 week guideline on the NHS, and we all know what oncology refers to……..errrmmmm – starting to shit myself just a little already at this point!!
I’ve been for a MRI scan before so knew what to expect – its not great fun by any means, but hey, its a day out and i hear they have a Burger King at the hospital, it can’t be all bad eh?! My dad came with me, he knows i’m useless at driving to places i don’t know and also parking in a multi story terrifies me – he was the man for the job that day! As unpleasant as the experience was, it was done and dusted within a few hours and I was home again safe and sound. I thought nothing more of it. That was until I received a call from the hospital later that day asking me to attend for a CT scan. (Gulp – heart drops into my stomach). The lovely lady on the phone explained that the doctor had seen my MRI and would like to follow up with a CT scan, they could squeeze me in on Friday 23rd December the morning before my arranged appointment with the oncologist in the afternoon. Cool, just a few days to wait and feel extremely anxious!
So the Friday came round quite quick, off i trotted with my boyfriend back to the hospital for my first ever CT scan. All went well, i was thankful it only took a few minutes so i could grab a Burger King before the afternoon appointment with the oncologist! I was walking down the long corridor on my way to the oncology clinic when my mobile rang, it was the hospital?! Why are they ringing me…i’m on my way and still half an hour early! They asked if i could come now to be seen by the doctor “of course” i replied, “i’m just around the corner, i’ll be one minute.” I was ushered through to reception to make my presence known, then weighed quickly before being told to wait in a small room. “The doctor will be with you shortly” said the man with the reindeer Christmas themed hat on. So, at this point i’m REALLY nervous. There are no notes on the desk, no PC screen, just some dim lighting and a couple of chairs to sit on. The doctor appears within minutes alongside the cheery chap with the reindeer hat on, he subsequently took his hat off and pulled up a chair beside the doctor who was sat opposite myself. Knees almost touching, the doctor explains that i was referred to him as my GP thought i may have a sarcoma – a type of bone cancer. Fortunately this wasn’t the case. Phew, i thought! However, he then stated that all the scans i’d had done confirm a diagnosis of an intraosseous meningioma. “A what now?!” i asked. A rare type of tumour that grows in the membrane around the brain and extensively into the bone. I can’t remember much after that as i started crying, partly from relief of being told i don’t have cancer, but also from the shock of being told i have a rare tumour growing inside my head. The only words i do remember him saying are ‘surgery’and ‘titanium’. I got him to write the name of the tumour on a scrap piece of paper he found as i knew i would have to google it as soon as i got home!
So back to the waiting game again for an appointment with a neurosurgeon, roll on Christmas, i think i deserve a drink after that kind of news -i’m getting bladdered!