Ever since the biopsy (of my thyroid gland) three weeks ago I've been jumpy every time the phone rang, and especially with the display showing the word Unknown.
I have to confess though that it's already been a bit like that for me for about 1-1½ years. Before that, I can remember a time when the phone display showing Unknown usually meant a welcome call from a friend with an unlisted phone number... Then my friend got back to work full time; and weekdays in the daytime it was no longer likely to be her calling. Instead I suddenly had constant reason to fear Unknown to mean some emergency or problem connected to my parents (because that did happen on a number of occasions).
Last week kept me on the edge again with some daytime Unknown calls that I half expected to be the hospital abut my test results, but that turned out to be just wrong number calls, or someone hanging up before I had a chance to answer (leaving me wondering...)
Yesterday, as late in the day as at 6.15 PM I did not expect the Unknown caller to be the doctor - but it was. Luckily, it was good news. She said the result of the biopsy gave no indication of malignancy, and considering that I have not really had any problems from the enlarged gland so far, she saw no reason for surgery or further examination right now. The downside is that she also said things like "contact us if you get difficulties swallowing or breathing"... Yeah. Also having pollen allergy and asthma, and entering the worst pollen season, just what I needed to keep hypochondria going...
Hypochondria(sis): a disorder characterized by a preoccupation with body functions and the interpretation of normal body sensations (such as sweating) or minor abnormalities (such as minor aches and pains) as portending problems of major medical moment. - Hypochondrium is Greek for the anatomic area of the upper abdomen just below the ribs. Hypochondriasis was thought by the ancients to be due to disturbed function of the spleen and other organs in the upper abdomen.
... Seriously, though, of course I'm relieved! Four years ago I spent the heat of summer in a hospital ward because of needing other kind of surgery (no hypochondria); and I assure you I've not been longing to repeat the experience.
I should have my blood tested again in about six months; which I should be able to combine with other yearly medical check-ups. So I hope I'll be able to put it aside until then (not getting too obsessed with checking my image in the mirror).
The vampire bite marks (=bruises from the biopsy) by the way had just about faded away for Friday last week, when I was going to a friend's 50th birthday party. Another relief, because that meant I could dress like a normal person without evoking curious looks or questions. (The goitre is not all that obvious in itself, unless you already know about it. I think...)
Thinking of phone calls made me remember the photo of the old phone booth. It was one of the first I successfully experimented with in Paint Shop Pro last year, playing around with some artistic effects. I thought I had lost the edited copy in the computer crash back in the autumn; but remembered I had published it before, on the Soaring Through the World blog. So I was able to retrieve it from my Picasa album on the web. It's an old type phone booth placed outside a museum. I think it is still in use, but not sure. Phone booths of all kinds are getting rather rare these days, with almost everyone always carrying their own mobile (cell phone).