MRI = Satellite radio and yoga mudra

I ventured into yet another hospital today to complete my MRI exam and fulfill some bloodwork. I arrived a little bit early but was taken right away into the main radiology area. I waited no longer than 10 minutes anywhere before meeting with someone; in fact, it felt like instant service. I’d never been to this hospital before but it’s not known to be one of the area’s best; rather, it leads a quiet, forgotten existence tucked away behind a highway. But not being able to get through half a Simple & Delicious magazine before meeting with the radiology technician? This place doesn’t seem that bad.

First I went to complete my MRI. The fertility clinic had scheduled the appointment and told me it was for 10am; yesterday the hospital called and told me it was 10:30am. So I arrived for 10am, because hey, I have the time and I’d rather be settled in and waiting than anxiously driving to the place. I expected to wait a little before my appointment, but no, they took me right away. Between a painless registration and two friendly nurses walking me down to the MRI, I was surprised how fast they were taking me back. What service! Then I met with the MRI technician, who needed some clarification about why I was having the procedure. I don’t know if that’s hospital standard procedure, but this is where my months of research into having a potential unicornuate uterus (there’s that darn hope again!) came in handy. “I’m here to have my uterus scanned and my kidneys scanned.” “Why do they need your kidneys?” “Because I was diagnosed with a unicornuate uterus” – blank stare from technician (male) – “which means I have half a uterus, and usually people with my condition also have one kidney.” “Have you had any problems until now that would make them suspect you have only one kidney?” “No.” “Oh.” The insinuation being that if it hasn’t been bothering me, why check it out? But I was not going to have to go through all of this not to find out if I had one kidney or not. Haven’t I waited long enough?

The MRI was not as frightening as many people make it out to be. I’m not claustrophobic but it is a rather small machine, so I can see why the worry. I wore two hospital gowns and socks, and they offered me a blanket but the room was warm enough. I had headphones on with satellite radio pumped into them (on a station of my choosing). The technician propped a wedge pillow under my knees. A fan blew fresh air over me; my head and feet were both sticking out of the machine. The sun filtered in from the high windows, lighting up the room and warming up my toes. The noise of the machine would give me slight pulsating sensations in my body, almost like a massage. While most people hear “don’t move” and panic, I dug into my yoga mudra practice and relaxed. Just be. Just lay here and do nothing. Just breathe…

It probably took between 30-40 minutes to do both scans, but with the music and the technician telling me every few minutes “This one’s only 4 minutes long,” the time went by quickly.  After the MRI, I felt extremely relaxed (probably from all that slow, deep breathing). I went down the hallway to the laboratory area and again, within 10 minutes I was helped. And this is where I had the most, shall we say, interesting reaction to my declaration of a unicornuate uterus…

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