The Lump

It’s Friday afternoon April 20, 2018 I’m sitting at work on my computer and touch my neck as I always do. This is one of my many awkward habits. Except this time it was different. This time, there’s a lump just above my collar bone that I had never noticed before. It alarms me, as a nurse I know a lump in this area is likely a lymph node. An enlarged lymph node in this area is a sign of Lymphoma, us nurses always jump to the worst possible scenario! I immediately go into the next room where my coworker sits working. I have her feel it and she too is concerned. I finish up my work for the day and walk out to my car. I had horrible feeling about this lump. But it was Friday afternoon, my family physician was already out for the weekend and I had a hair appointment to get to, so I left work. I continued having an uneasy feeling all weekend. But on Monday I had an appointment with my endocrinologist. I was having my thyroid scanned so I thought they could just scan this mysterious lump while I was there.

On Monday, I lay down in the chair to have my thyroid scanned and asked the ultrasound tech to please scan this lump and see what she thinks. She puts her finger on it, scans it and says “that’s just a vessel.” In disbelief I say, “just a vessel?” I had never had this lump before, how could it be just a vessel? So, at this point I leave as my thyroid hadn’t changed since my last scan and I’m being told this lump is “just a vessel.” On one hand I’m relieved that it wasn’t a lymph node, but my fear kicked back in because now I was at a loss. Now what is going on? Now what do I do?

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