One of the things that’s always on my agenda at the start of a new year is to go for my yearly neck ultrasound. In some ways, doing a difficult task at the beginning of the year is like ripping the bandage off. Then, when I get the results back (and they are hopefully all good), I can relax a bit. This week, I went for my annual appointment to check my neck. And while 11 years later, it still gives me scanxiety to go for the exam and await my results (which I should have in a few days), I’m proud to say I made it through.
Since I know that I’m prone to scanxiety before tests like this, there are a few things that I do in advance to prepare, which include everything from looking at my calendar to make sure I don’t have a pressing work deadline to planning something nice to do afterward. My endocrinologist had given me the script to go for the ultrasound during my last appointment back in November, and I tucked it away and almost forgot to schedule it. It wasn’t until I was out of state last week that I realized it was already February, and I usually do something at the beginning of the month. Fortunately, the ultrasound place had availability and was able to get me in within a week.
I always love having morning appointments with providers despite not being a morning person. For starters, that means I usually get to see them before they get behind in their day (read: less wait time for me). Secondly, I also feel like my brain is not fully awake yet (since I go pre-coffee), which makes me feel less anxious. But this time, my appointment fell on a Monday morning, which worked out even better. I use Mondays as a calibration day and don’t tend to schedule too many appointments or calls. It’s a day for me to catch up on admin work, like invoicing clients, following up on emails, and reaching out to people. So, it was the perfect day to have my neck ultrasound. In the future, I’m going to try to schedule all of my medical appointments on Mondays.
While I did have a little bit of a wait for this appointment, I used the time to go through emails and organize some files on my phone. The ultrasound itself took about 10 minutes from start to finish. And then it was off to play the waiting game until I get my results. Afterward, I went to Southdown Coffee and treated myself to an iced cappuccino and a breakfast sandwich. Then, I spent the remainder of the morning decompressing. It was just what my mind needed after the exam and what my body needed after a busy week last week.
If you’re prone to scanxiety before medical appointments, I would highly suggest scheduling your exam or test on a day when you can devote your energy to the appointment, treating yourself afterwards, and doing something during the week to celebrate making it through.