I received a phone call the other day from my physician. I knew this was not going to be a call that would generate a rebate from my co-pay, the clue being ,NO physician on earth ever calls a patient unless they have some pertinent news for your ears only. News that might get caught up in the Hippa web should he email you. Or news that can not be delegated to a subordinate to relay. He phoned to give me the news that the biopsy he took the other day and sent out to the CSI Lab came back positive. He assured me that it would be “O.K.” because this was the “good cancer”.
Oh thank God. I had no idea there were discrepancies in cancer. I knew of stages, but not dueling battles between good and bad. I wonder if bad cancer wears a black hat toting a six shooter and hops off a POPular pony to burst through swinging bar doors announcing his arrival. On the same note, I wonder if the Good cancer wears a white hat and can catch a silver bullet between his teeth while tap dancing in gold cowboy boots. I better stop wondering and get working.
I trotted off to research this in my Physicians Desk Reference. If you don’t own one of these….DON’T purchase one. This over priced and over weight book has so much detailed information that reading it will guarantee to make you sick even if you are well. I thumbed through to the big “C” section and tried to find the definition for “good” cancer. I couldn’t locate it anywhere on the pages. I found every other adjective describing various cancers but none using the prefix “good”. Hmmm, I’m baffled. Is it a good cancer because it’s not a … a……..bad cancer? This led me on a chase in section “B” to hog-tie a Bad cancer. Oh, silly, there is no listing for bad cancer. There was Basal cell, ( not the green leafy kind), bilateral ( hmm, maybe look at it from both sides), bone (in or out, wait, that’s a steak reference), brain (hm..no brainer), breast ( oh my…blush), bladder (weak, the mere mention and I’m off to trot).. oh Lordy, all those B’s….I may start to stutter like a silly swine….. ah-ba-dee…ah-ba-dee…… that’s all folks.
I strayed from my current reading material to mosey over to the local phone book and round-up the Yellow Pages. I lassoed my reading glasses around my head to capture the fine print. I guess I got distracted and started to seek out good vs bad Doctors……..but there were no listings with that heading. I did come across a a few named Evil and Jekyll,.. oh wait I was still in the “A” section under Attorney’s….
I phoned my Doctor back and asked him about his findings. I petitioned his requisition about his statement that I have a “good” cancer. He echoed: “not to worry, this is the good kind of cancer”. Oh great, now I have a good cancer that is polite, but hopefully not the kind to spread its generosity around. Maybe it’s a courteous and chivalrous type that would untie a lady from the railroad track before the train hits and causes a snide whiplash. Good cancer. How do you treat a Good cancer, do you use gentle persuasion? “Now, run along you little naughty nodule and don’t let me catch your benign butt back here again”….. I have never heard of a cancer being described in those terms; good or bad. I am beginning to wonder if he actually sent my specimen to a pathologist or to a Cotillion Instructor. Probably to the moon. How much money do these guys make in a minute anyway…..
Well I will tell you…. I once calculated that number.
During a visit to our Orthopedic specialist, a matter of five minutes was spent with my son to examine his wrist that was injured while snowboarding down killer mountain. It came out to be roughly $130 a minute. I started to question the Doctor about after care and he darted back “Gimme a minute…” I cherish those opportune moments where I have an epiphany and a burning desire to enroll my son in medical school. I dangled the new snow board carrot as his ultimate goal…..(not to mention an all inclusive Assisted Living space for mommy equipped with a bar and limo driver….pending graduation…).
Making light of what could be construed as a life threatening situation is not what most people do when they are confronted with the “C” word. I am no stranger to this announcement, I have been confronted with this issue before. People tend to react in different ways; either they have the wind knocked out of their sails or they are settled in disbelief or they just put on a cape and go forward wearing a mask. I have sat in all those saddles. Each time I witnessed the “C” who shall not be named, it was always followed by the word “Good”. And this has been good. And now I get to add the word “Kind” to it. And that is better.
So I told the Doctor; “good”, I like good. You better be good; Good is as Good does……. I’d hate to have to jump back to the “A” section in the yellow pages……Goodie- goodie..gums drop…..
* note to all: I’m fine and not finished spreading the humor……