I'm used to walking down the hall and turning to the right - into the rooms decorated with baby announcements and pictures. There is a table in those rooms and two chairs and a small counter that has a doppler and gel set out. They are hospital clinic rooms so they're a tad cold but the doctors and nurses try hard to make them inviting with all the pictures.
Today I walked down the hall and turned left. The nurses were ahead of me and stepped back when we got to the door to let me enter first - Procedure Room B. It was cold. Sterile. Instead of baby announcements and pictures on the wall hung pamphlets - Understanding Abnormal Pap Test Results, Colposcopy, Detecting Breast Cancer, the list went on. Instead of a small counter their was a large one full of tools and jars and gels or creams or whatever they were.
We went through the normal list of questions but their wasn't much to add since I had just been there. Then I started asking the nurse exactly what my results meant and as she explained them to me I felt my eyes begin to burn. Tears weren't welling up yet, but they were knocking at the door. I'm pretty sure she knew it as when I explained that I'd had "inconclusive" results before and asked to verify if these "abnormal" results were the same thing she looked at me, tilted her head and said, No. I'm sorry.
The doc came in shortly after and again explained why I was here. Basically he said that 5 out of 100 pap results will come back "abnormal" that in of itself though was not why I was sitting on this cold bed. The reason I was here is because my results came back with a note that said "Atypical squamous cells, cannot exclude HSIL (ASC-H)."
The pamphlet I have says:
"Abnormal cells show early precancer changes called dysplasia or cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). Dysplasia and CIN are graded as mild, moderate, or severe. Mild dysplasia (CIN 1) usually goes away on its own. Moderate (CIN 2) and severe (CIN 3) dysplasia indicate more serious changes."
In lay mans terms the comment on my test results said - Atypical cells, can not exclude moderate or severe dysplasia.
And so I put my feet in the stirrups, laid back, and started praying. Praying for it not to hurt. Praying for my results to be okay. Thinking about my boys and praying.
The first thing he did was put some sort of solution on my cervix that makes abnormal areas on the cervix easier to see. The solution highlighted more than one area and so the biospy was completed. I believe he took tissue from three locations.
The biopsy itself wasn't really painful. I'm not sure what the tool he used looked like but it felt like he was using a paper hole puncher to grab the tissue, but again, not really painful. To be honest the speculum caused more pain.
Then, within a few minutes it was all over. I sat up and the doctor asked if I was lightheaded. I was. A tad. So I sat there a little longer.
He asked if I had any questions and my biggest concern was regarding getting pregnant again. We talked about future pregnancies and if this would affect them. It all depends. If the results come back positive they will want to treat it. The treatment could affect a pregnancy. For now I'm trying not to get myself worked up. I should have the results in a week - depending on those results I'm sure I'll have more questions.
I left the clinic and walked to my car. With each step the pain became worse and worse. By the time I opened the door it was all I could do to climb in and collapse on the seat. I shut the door and started sobbing. I called Collin and my mom. I explained what happened and I cried. I hung up the phone and cried some more.
My head tells me there is no use worrying right now.
But my heart is so heavy.