The Sound of the Underground

Disco lights way down low……hmm well…no…not in this case…lights down low but I am staring at the top of an MRI scanner which is approx 2 cm from my nose.

Oh hi I’m Jane..and I have NMO….god I hate that…”Hi I’m Jane and I have NMO” as opposed to “Hi I’m Jane, yes I’m married to a wonderful man and we have the most beautiful son”. Oh don’t worry…I don’t expect you to know what NMO is….I am used to blank looks and questions as I rattle off the last 3 years of my life in about 5 minutes, I’m sure my husband wouldn’t think this would be a problem for me as I do like to talk haha.

When I write to you I want it to be as I am taking to you as friend, so, how are you today? Anything planned for today?

Anyway…..Girls Aloud, 5 powerful girls who dreamt of being pop stars, so what happens when your dreams don’t come true? When reality suddenly hits that you are not the 6th member of girls aloud you are in fact inside an MRI scanner, scared to death cos you can’t feel your legs gripping to the panic button and zoning out to girls aloud blasting through your large headphones.  I oddly felt like it wasn’t real, almost as if I was in a soap opera? surreal and being brought back down to reality when the voice of a radiographer comes through my headphones “Jane are you ok? You’re doing really well””Yes” I squeak… I wonder if they could hear me…hmmm. I was calm….I was in the right place…

Perhaps what struck me then was even though I couldn’t feel my legs, was that I still had my sense of humour, I couldn’t help but giggle to myself that the music of girls aloud…the sound of the underground was in time with the banging of the MRI scanner (why are they so noisy?!) I also knew that this song was also going to stay with me and be special.

After the calmness passed and the music ended, I was brought back down to earth and then it hit me how ill I really was. As the porter wheeled me back to the ward after being slid from trolley to trolley and back onto the hospital bed my mind started racing – what the hell had happened to me?? This had been going on for months…and now I was recovering from being in the MRI scanner for 1 hr 30 mins…what the fuck?! (sorry mum and dad).

Time passed and eventually a neurologist came to see me on the orthopedic ward I was on “Mrs Cooper”  as he drew the curtains…hmm closed curtains…not a good sign…” we have found fluid lesions on your spine and brain” the silence as I couldn’t speak was awful-I was on my own “We think you have M.S, the lesions…we can’t tell if it’s cancer but more like a 90% chance it is M.S”. Shit. All I could think about was Susan Kennedy from neighbours…and a scene in Muriel’s wedding when her best friend has a tumor on her spine.

As he left a nurse came over and for the first time I cried, I phoned my husband and text family, I was quickly transferred to a side room and the sister was lovely. Who did I want? A priest? Counsellor? my family? I thought I only had a slipped disc..

A few hours passed and I was told I was going to be transferred to another hospital as I needed more investigations and tests as they were not 100% sure. I knew then this was serious..for sure… I was going to is a major hospital.

Shit. I am going to another place..30-40 miles from home. What was going to happen to me? Yeah sure I was going to be in good hands, but Jeeeeeez.


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