If you have ever had serious health issues, you know how tough it is to wait for test results. For me, I have anxiety before, during, and after the test. Every time the phone rings my heart rate doubles. The sight of my doctors name on the caller ID almost causes a heart attack. You may think I’m exaggerating, but really I’m not.
It all goes back to my first biopsy. After feeling a lump in my breast many doctors reassured me it was just a cyst. When I went to get the “cyst” drained, it wouldn’t drain and was no longer considered a cyst. The next day, I saw the doctor’s name on the caller id. Not a good sign. All I remember hearing is, “The biopsy shows abnormal cell growth.” And, “Yes, you have breast cancer.”
I get anxiety after every medical test I have now.
Last week, I had a colposcopy after a pap from a few months ago came back “slightly abnormal”. I was nervous a week before the test. During the test my legs were shaking so badly I’m surprised the doctor could even complete the exam. Friday, I was nervous every time the phone would ring. Yesterday, I was so stressed I took a Xanax during the middle of the day to calm me down. I think the last time I took one was maybe a year ago.
Today around 10am the phone rang and the caller id displayed my doctor’s name. I almost couldn’t breathe. Two days after a biopsy and the doctor is calling?
Luckily, my doctor got straight to the point. No small talk. The test came back normal. Nothing showed up in the biopsy. I thought for a minute I might collapse.
Have you ever had an extremely stressful event or emergency and then when it’s all over you feel wiped out? You probably know how I felt then.
I know I should be relaxed now, but I still feel like I’m coming down from that adrenaline high. It might take some time. The last week has been extremely stressful awaiting the test and the results.
I’m curious. Those of you that have had cancer or other serious medical issues do you still get anxious after every test? Does it ever get better?
Rachel K. Belkin, M.Ed, is a journalist and writer with over 15 years of expertise in travel, business and marketing education, health, and local Austin, Texas events.
With a Master's degree in education from Texas State University and a Business Foundations Certification from The University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business, Rachel's extensive background is highlighted by her published works and contributions to prestigious publications, including HuffPost, Hometalk, Matador Network, AP News, and MSN.com, as well as on her own platforms, Rachel K. Belkin, Elkin Bay, and Probe the Globe.
Beyond her accomplishments in writing, Rachel is a sought-after educator, teaching businesses effective marketing strategies and content creation techniques. Notably, she successfully built a blog from scratch in 2008, ultimately selling it for six figures in 2021.
Rachel's commitment to advocacy is exemplified by her role on the Breast Cancer Resource Center Advisory Council, particularly contributing to the success of the Young Survivor Project. Rachel is also an experienced public speaker with appearances on TV segments for Fox 7 Austin, KXAN, and CBS Austin and as a speaker at conferences and professional networking meetings for business owners and cancer survivors.