Grossly Unremarkable

I’d been anxiously awaiting my appointment last week with my neurologist.  I would get the results of my MRI’s and find out if I was definitely going to have surgery.  I worried about it so much, I got depressed.  It felt there’d be no good outcome — if they wanted to do surgery, I’d have back surgery.  If they didn’t want to do it, it meant there was nothing to be done.

It turns out that the neurologist recommends surgery BUT I need to see a neurosurgeon to see if is possible and the surgeon agrees that it would take pressure off my nerves and prevent pain.  So I have to wait another MONTH for that appointment.  I had so hoped that I’d at least know what the future held.  I know I have a bulge in my lumbar spine that might be corrected by surgery, but I still don’t know if I’ll have it, when it will be, or how long recovery will take.

My neurologist gave me a copy of the results of the MRIs as well as a disc copy of the actual images to take to the neurosurgeon.  I started reading it in the waiting room while I waited for my ride.  And I didn’t get halfway through it before I started laughing.  The other patients looked at me as if I was crazy, but the language of the results was incomprehensible — except I kind of understood some of the root words.

IMG_20180316_0001_NEW (2)


I did what I usually do when I’m stressed out but not depressed.  I processed the results in my journal.  This is the first entry:

spine 1
My spine blew my mind — may not be anatomically correct

Okay, I might have been a wee bit depressed still, but at least I could see the humor of my situation.  I tried doing research on the words that made me laugh.


spine 3

spine 4

So far the anxiety I felt before my appointment hasn’t come back — at least not in a form that feels too heavy to bear.  In fact, I got a dose of that magic that comes through processing my worries through sketching and writing.  So, here’s today’s journal entry.

spine 2

And isn’t it amazing that in this chaotic world, people are dedicating their whole lives to figuring out cures and comforts for rare disorders like mine?  The friends I’ve met on this journey have helped me stagger through it all.  Whatever happens, the basic goodness and beauty all around me will remain constant.  Scribbling away helps me keep that in mind

Thanks for reading my blog and giving me a direction for my journey.

Broken Open 001


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2 thoughts on “Grossly Unremarkable

  1. Dear Joy,

    The medical terminology “grossly unremarkable” means “that viewing the organ/biopsy/structure/or whatever with bare eyes did not reveal anything out of the ordinary. Makes me wonder why they don’t just say it in plain English?

    I’m sorry you’ve been worried and dealing with body issues. Hang in there. I’m pulling for you!

    Love, Lynn

    On Sun, Mar 25, 2018 at 2:48 PM, joy murray — life ~ art ~ dreams wrote:

    > Joy Murray posted: “I’d been anxiously awaiting my appointment last week > with my neurologist. I would get the results of my MRI’s and find out if I > was definitely going to have surgery. I worried about it so much, I got > depressed. It felt there’d be no good outcome — if ” >

    1. It’s just funny that medical terminology is so different from the way we actually communicate. I would have liked it if they’d said there was no problem. But at least didn’t say I was gross. Thanks for your encouragement. It’s a strange and wondrous journey 🙂

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