MRI Yi Yi Yi Yi

I’m insane under normal circumstances, let’s get that out of the way.  But put me in even a partial tube with a needle in my arm makes me eligible for the executive suite at the nearest asylum.  images

I’ve been claustrophobic my whole life having it worsen as I’ve gotten older.  My mother used to make me stay in my room with the door shut for hours at a time so this could be where it stems from, at least 75 shrinks seemed to think so.

I went to see a neurologist because of numbness in my feet.  Being a runner for so long it’s easy to assume that’s what it’s from however, the discomfort is becoming unbearable.   Enter Dr. Babe, I’ll call her since the ink on her medical license is still wet, and did she have a ball sticking pins all over me.


“Yes, and for the record I am not a voodoo doll.”

She’s Asian so it always sounds as if she’s yelling at me.  “WHY OPEN MRI… NOT AS GOOD. CLOSED BETTER.”

“Because I am extremely claustrophobic.”  She waved her hand in disapproval before saying, “I WILL DRUG YOU.”

“Like, out cold drug me or just a slight buzz?”

Later that day, her office calls to say they found an open MRI facility taking my insurance.

Goodie, I say, secretly hoping they’d forget all about me.

I’m very brave and efficient on the surface, but truth be told, I’m a wreck about most things.  I conceal rather than reveal until PANIC strolls in blowing my cover.

I make the appointment for Saturday asking for sedation knowing full well, without it, this isn’t happening.  No problem, they say, your doctor already okayed it.

My friend Ed is supposed to go with me but then gets a job.  Ed’s like my best girlfriend I can tell anything to, and that includes falling apart in public.  Now his wife, who works like a plow horse all week, kindly offers to come instead.  One, I feel bad she has to drive into the city on her day off, and two, how can I implode in front of Evelyn?  She’ll never let me see Ed again thinking I’m deranged and dangerous making me STUPIDLY decline her offer.  Yes, the crackpot has now entered the building.

When I arrive this little drug dealer with boobs that could become legendary snaps,

“Whes yo ez-cort?”

“Excuse me? Am I at a cotillion?”

“Ah can-not give you ana-thin with you not havin an ez-cort.”

“No one told me I needed an ez-cort or an escort.  Look, I live a block away.  I can sit here till I can walk a straight line.  How bout that?”

“How bout, ah dun’t zink zo.”  So PANIC has just pulled up to the curb.  I decide, hell…fuck it, I can do this.  It’s open.  It’s 45 minutes.  Yes, I’m gonna get this over with today.

“Yeah, sure ya are,” said PANIC toolin in the door.

A cheerful woman named Ursula, the width of a bank, conducting the procedure comes out to get me.

“I hear you’re a little nervous.”  0511-1009-2417-1749_Cartoon_of_a_Chubby_Black_Nurse_Holding_a_Giant_Syringe_clipart_image

“Who me? Well, maybe just a little.” PANIC, the sadistic shit, starts giggling.

“I thought we could have a test run.  You know, I’ll strap you in – give you a blindfold if you want.  Just so you can see how it is, because once I put the IV in and you want to get out,  I’ll have to do all over again if you want to go back in.”

“Well, I can betcha 5 bucks Urs, once she’s out there’s no way she’s goin back in.”

“Shut up PANIC.”

“Did you tell me to shut up?”

“No no, just talking to myself.”

So Ursula points to a navy gown that seats 6 saying, everything off from the waist up before arranging me like I’m in a coffin short of folding my hands.  The machine isn’t even halfway over my head before screaming, “Let me out…LET ME OUT.”

“I’ll just take that 5 bucks please.”

I jump up, run to put on my shirt and coat and am out of there so fast I should win something, like a toaster or tickets to a Yankee game.  I then go right to the French bistro next door ordering a double…I’ll take anything…when I hear,

“See, you did this backwards.  You shoulda come here first then went over there.  Haven’t I taught you anything?”

“Fuck you PANIC.”

To be continued.

A woozy SB





About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
This entry was posted in Health, humor, New York City and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to MRI Yi Yi Yi Yi

  1. Yankee dog no like MRI ? If you every come up to Ct. you can take the bus line out of Chinatown “fung wah”. Me think you like fung wah. Me love you long time.


  2. Oh Lordy…..Ursula sounds like she at least had a heart, which is always a plus in these situations. My sister is exactly like you and would have done the same without missing a beat. Believe me, Crazy has a large membership. Now dust yourself off. Grab an escort. Get your damn drugs and do this!
    Ps. I’m not a doctor, however numbness is the feet is a back issue commonly inflammation. Years of stilettos could be the cause. But I’m not a doctor ….


  3. Elle Knowles says:

    Something did come out of that harrowing experience – this blog post! I’ve never experienced a MRI, but they make it look so easy on TV. It just goes to show you can’t believe everything you see on the tube. And with the technology today why does it take 45 minutes! They should be able to whisk you in one side and out the other in less than a minute! Just my thoughts. At least you are alive and kicking! 😉 ~Elle


    • A closed one takes 25 I’m told. But I know my limits. This is why I’m leaning towards cremation because even dead, I can’t imagine being in a box.

      A very funny woman with the initials EK said, it’s too bad we can’t read while it’s going on LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  4. micklively says:

    It’s a very amusing piece you’ve written.


  5. Lynn says:

    Perhaps you could go for a cocktail or two first, then imagine yourself lying on a beach, soaking up the sunshine. Oy!


    • That would have been the smart thing, but when you’re freaked out you’re not thinking of drinks with tiny umbrellas. You’re too bust looking for an escape hatch. I’m not a good patient.


  6. Found a photo on your blog/web site taken in 1972 – the last time i saw you. Jogged my memory. Did you have an after school job at Brooklawn Cleaners? Maybe as Detective Hercule Poirot would say your little gray cells work better then mine. I have a link to my dropbox account. Please let me if doesn’t work. Thanks.


    • That was a picture a photographer named Hank Gans took when I was 20. I have a copy he recently sent me oddly enough. Look at all that hair. I did work at a cleaners but got fired after the owner’s bitchy daughter found out I cleaned my pal Betty’s coat for free. Oh well. Her father used to chase me around the desk claiming the cleaning fumes made him amorous. His name was Mr. Roach…talk about living up to your name. UGH…haven’t thought about him in years.


  7. We are on a parallel course. I had a brain MRI last week (results were good). I refused to do a closed one. I found an open one and spent some time talking to the tech. I took 2 mg of Valium an hour before and I napped through it. Valium has that effect on me. No way I was going in a tube face up. They knew I was taking the Valium so they wanted me to have an ez-cort. I could have easily taken it and not mentioned it. For 10 years I had to get breast MRIs and they can’t do open ones for the breast. Fortunately, you lie on the table face down with your head in a round opening (like a spa massage table) and you can see the floor. Much better. Oh yes, your boobs are in openings too dangling downward. Who comes up with these sadistic tests? Be sure to go back and get it checked. It could be a lot of things.


    • I actually went yesterday and it was quite something. Have yet to write about it. I took 10 mil of Valium and am still so woozie. I did okay till the last 5 minutes so they let me out. I feel better knowing you can’t be in a tube either. I felt like such a woose. Those breast MRIs sound so nerve-wracking. What they put us through. Thanks for sharing.


      • We are not alone. When I got the script from my doctor, his nurse talked to me about claustrophobia because she has it bad. They have to put her out completely. 10 mg of Valium! Wow! You go girl. You are in happyland!


      • I am still in happyland bumping into the furniture. I just wanted to get it over with. It was the only way. I’m glad to know we claustrophobics belong to a tribe.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. AZMike says:

    Just found you, love your writing.
    Was wondering if your hearing problem was only temporary, sorry ic this was already covered in one of your other posts.
    On your feet numbness, you may wish to read “7 Steps to a Pain Free Life” by Robin McKenzie. I had gone to a chiropractor for 35 visits with no relief of tingling hands and fingers. After 10 minutes of doing one of the authors exercises, my tingling was gone. Someone above mentioned back trouble, the exercise I did focused on an area of the neck that had no pain. I think many carpal tunnel cases could get relief from their problem with this exercise.
    The numbness occassionally comes back but I now know how to fix it fast.
    Love your writing off to enjoy some more. 🙂


  9. There aren’t many people who could make a trip to the MRI into an entertaining story, but you pulled it off. I have a friend who had a very similar situation a month or so ago, although he was much larger, so that was an issue too. I don’t think I’d like to have one or be the doctor trying to get people to go into them all day long and not move.


    • The whole experience blows David, and when I think Thomas Jefferson and George Washington lived long hardy lives without ever having an one says something, what I’m not sure, but something.


      • They were lucky, I guess, although if they had to have one, they would have been out of luck, so I guess we’re lucky now too. I’m watching Breaking Bad now and they’re showing all the various stages and effects of chemotherapy. Something else I’d never want to go through.


      • I could never watch that. Talk about gratitude…just to be well should be reason to celebrate.


  10. skinnyuz2b says:

    I wish I live closer, Susannah. I understand your feelings. I panic if I need any dental work involving Novocain. I’m allergic to one type, and if they mess up the pain is excruciating and lasts for days.


  11. You can do this Susannah. All the same, I get it panic is real. But if I could I would take you by the hand and go with you and be your ez-cort, I mean escort. :O)


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