Bone Density and PTSD

At my last visit to the Oncologist it was suggested that we have a look at my bone density. My Estrogen has been suppressed for 26 months – first through chemo and then menopause. I have been on Aromasin for 20 or so months and Aromasin does not not a bone component. So Monday I went in for a bone density test. It was the easiest test that I have ever had. I laid still for 10 minutes and had to take 3 deep breaths and hold them. Piece of cake. I do not have the results yet, but I take my 1500mg of Calcium per day and I do weight bearing exercise. I guess what was a bit more difficult and I did not expect was the emotions that came over me when I walked into the building.

This building houses my Oncologist’s office, his Billing office and the Imaging Center. I have been back to this building many times since I finished my treatment. What was it about this visit that was different? Could it be that it is summer and 2 years ago during the summer is when I was going through my treatments? As I parked the car and walked up to the entrance I could remember the all of the other times. I was thankful that I only had to go in to the Billing office and then the Imaging center, but I was flooded with so many emotions. When I opened the entrance doors I there was THAT smell of the building. That “you are here again” smell that I really do not recall ever smelling anywhere else. (I read Sprucehillfarm’s anticipatory nausea post – so I guess this is the smell that gives me Post Traumatic Stress instead of nausea.)

When I was finished I quickly got out the the building, but so many thoughts were still rushing through my brain. I am so thankful that I am doing well, but I could not help questioning if have I made the changes in my life that I need to stay healthy? Have I reduced my stress? Cancer is life changing. For most it comes upon us so fast and our heads are spinning from the diagnosis and we have to start treatment ASAP. You do what you need to do to get through the treatment and then after we have to adjust to our new normal. I guess I thought I was doing just that until that SMELL…


4 Responses to Bone Density and PTSD

  1. bcjenster says:

    I’m a year ahead of you and certain very unexpected things still trigger memories for me. I wonder if it ever stops completely.

  2. Liane says:

    wow, can I ever relate! My mom worked for 10 years at the only small local hospital in our community. I visited her often in those years. Then she was diagnosed with gall bladder cancer, treated at the same hospital by former colleagues and after one year of treatments she lost her battle. I took her to many appointments, screenings etc during that heartbreaking year. Exactly 2 months later I was diagnosed with IDC, treated at the same hospital/cancer clinic by the same oncologist and chemo nurses. Everytime I had bloodwork I had to walk past my moms former office and then into the same rooms for my chemo the next day. The smells, the sounds, the sights were all overwhelming some days I’m sure everyone from the lab techs to the houskeeping staff (who all knew me through my mother) thought I was truly loosing it as the tears fell silently and uncontrollably even in the long corridors that I knew only too well. Sorry, this is long. Just wanted to say – I have been there.

  3. sprucehillfarm says:

    I hate walking into the hospital. It takes everything I have to get down the hall. The bathroom in the oncologist office gets me everytime> I am sure I will have those feelings after I finish my treatments too. It is very emotional going through all this. Your brain does funny things to you.

  4. jillaldrich says:

    With you on this one. I had truly wonderful and truly awful experiences at my hospital, and simply being in the facility lets me relive them all over again.

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