longing for the linear accelerator

So today will be my tenth date with the linear accelerator.  Eighteen to go.  Wierd as it sounds, everyday I look forward to radiation.  I have to believe that it is a special time for me, one that I’ll never have again, laying on the “Linex”.  Decided last week that I should get dressed up everyday for radiation.   That’s not really so hard since I go straight from work to Flower Hospital, but I make sure I have coordinating jewelry (and hat too, as it is getting cold for my bare naked head in Ohio).  I have worked on perfecting my “radiating aire” as I swoosh down the labyrinth of curving halls back to the more personal ladies radiation waiting room.  Even made my own “hospital gown” with bedazzled jewels on it.  I couldn’t stand the hospital gown and bathrobe!  I mean really.  I really, really hated it with a passion!!

All this overt sweetness and charm on my part is one way to overcome the impersonal nature of “radiation”.  A good description of my experience is:  ” The beam comes out of a part of the accelerator called a gantry, which rotates around the patient. The patient lies on a moveable treatment couch and lasers are used to make sure the patient is in the proper position. Radiation can be delivered to the tumor from any angle by rotating the gantry and moving the treatment couch.”**  Couch!  Ha!  That’s a good one!  Anyone who has ever been there will get a laugh out of that!  The surface you lay on is anything but a couch.  But the rotating gantry and movable surface is right on target. 

During my first couple of treatments I was obsessed with watching the gantry move and counting the seconds of radiation until I lost count.  Then eventually I decided that was a waste of time.  Since I was obligated to be there for about 25 minutes a day, I thought I should be more productive.  Now I am working on dropping off the edge of consciousness as quickly as possible after my radiators (my affectionate pet name for Natalie and Donna, the technicians who take care of me) get me into the exact position and turn on the music …..  And speaking of music, I can now bring in my own CD!  I have some harp music from the U of M music therapy program, but I am open to any suggestions anyone might send my way for the remaining sessions I will have.

The amazing thing is, it seems like just a few minutes later they are coming in to help me up.  That energy work and reiki this past summer has paid off.  Thanks, Tom and Veronica.  The Yoga Nidra didn’t hurt either.

Gotta go, it’s almost my time to “get into position”.





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One Response to “longing for the linear accelerator”

  1. Jayne Tegge Says:

    Hey KayLynne

    I finally got to the middle of my pile and found your business card from when I saw you at the Black Swamp. I enjoyed browsing through your blog. Despite not being a trained writer, you definitely have a knack for it! Keep it up. I can tell it is giving you power and courage. I wish you well on the radiation journey and your return to a “normal” life. I will check back soon to see how your are doing. You’re in our prayers.


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