Eighteen months off-treatment. It feels like she was just diagnosed yesterday and ten years ago all at the same time. Or maybe I feel this way because I generally have no sense of time and this is why I'm late to everything. BUT! I was not late for her appointment. No Duke Truant Officers on my back.
First off, ultrasound. (Ultra-sound? Ultra sound? Sonogram.) The tech does not rush out and come back in to take more pictures. Always a good sign. Eve receives three stickers.
Upstairs to clinic. After vitals (eight stickers), Eve finds the exam table makes an ample slide. Horseplay is perfectly acceptable in a hospital. Pools, no. Hospitals, yes. There are tons of bandages inside the exam table and a copy of our insurance card is on file.
While waiting for the doctors, Eve kills time like she usually does, by checking my brains. She says they are still there, although I'm pretty sure a small percentage of them gets sucked away every time I log into Facebook.
The doctors come in. Preliminary reports look great. I try to listen as Eve does nothing but look for boogers and blood up my nose. The docs don't let on that any of this is happening. We agree to meet again in three months and I make a mental note to plant something interesting up my nose like a pearl or a piece of dried pasta next time.
Eve asks for her beads. "I get three: a green one for pictures, a blue one for the doctors, and a black one for pokes." Light radiation, deep breathing for the stethoscope, and a quick prick of the needle. These visits are vastly different from the ones just two years ago. Two years ago, she didn't know what the beads meant; this year, she tells the phlebotomist (six stickers) they can poke her again so she can score an extra one for her necklace.