Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I'm Not Sure I Want To Know.

Last time I was there, I fought desperately with the paper gown to stay closed over my ample figure.  This time, after checking my weight and calculating my BMI, the nurse grabbed a gown from the XL drawer, not the L.  I am on the fence about whether or not this was a better outcome.  But at least there was still a little overlap and less risk of potential exposure.

I checked the status of the Band-Aid in the crook of my arm.  The phlebotomist wasn't the worst I've ever had, but she wasn't the best either.  There was no blood to be seen, but I contemplated the anticipated future bruising based on the pain of the needle stick and the seemingly endless amount of blood that was drawn.  I tried to count the days until I should expect the results, but my brain couldn't handle the calculation due to the 14 hour fast I was wrapping up.

I put off this physical for far too long.  Like many people who actively skip seeing a physician, I just don't want to know.  At the same time, I can't ignore the warnings about early detection of illness being one of the best weapons against it. Lately, it seems like every time I turn around, something else hurts.  As I'm beginning yet another thrust toward better health, it seemed like making my appointment was a good place to start.

I have no reason to believe I'm sick, and yet, I have no proof that I'm not.  I can take all of the tests in the world today and tomorrow could be the day it all goes down hill.  I try my best not to think that thought, but sometimes, when I'm not vigilantly fighting it off, it creeps in.

I told the doctor about all the things that concerned me.  Careful watch of her expression told me when I started to sound confusingly crazy.  She told me everything seems fine.  She told me to work on the weight problem.  She told me to rest my broken toe for a few weeks before I run on it again, but to find ways to exercise around it.  She told me to get a mammogram.  She told me they'd call me soon with the blood test results.

She told me not to worry.

I don't want anyone to have to take care of me.  I don't want to be a burden.  It's not the being sick that scares me. It's not even the idea of dying, although maybe a little.  Mostly, the thought of needing others for every facet of my survival is my undoing.  I've seen first hand what a chronic illness can do to a family and it's not what I want for mine.

What if all of my aches and pains aren't just those of a fat, rapidly-approaching-middle-aged woman?  What if they are something worse?  I know the "what ifs" aren't healthy, but living in denial isn't either.

For now, I sit by the phone and wait, not exactly patiently.




So happy to be getting back to my friends at yeah write after a 2 week break.


41 comments:

  1. I'm with you there. I hate physicals and doctors and blood tests and all that stuff. For some reason I have convinced myself over time that if I don't know about some health problem, it doesn't exist. But, like you, I finally went to the doctor recently and got all the routine tests and everything, and am now waiting - also not exactly patiently - for the results.

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    1. I hope we both get good results and fast!

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  2. I don't know what it is but ever since turning 40 last year, I've been *feeling* older. I hate it. Age never really bothered me before. I don't color my hair b/c whatever. But *feeling* the aches and pains, *knowing* the history of my family... it can be downright scary some days. ::hugs::

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    1. That's how I'm feeling about 37. Every day something is hurting or creaking. I'm hoping making healthy changes will alleviate that but if it doesn't, well, that is a whole new problem.

      PS - I love your hair.

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  3. I have weird aches and pains - sometimes it's just gas. Once I was convinced I had the beginnings of a cyst (or much worse) in my breast - but it was just shingles. JUST!

    Glad you kept your appointment. Getting older is F-U-N! FUN FUN FUN!

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    1. Oh, just shingles you say. Now I need to go Google shingles so I can learn everything about it and be on the look out. Thanks for filling up my weekend.

      I'm glad I kept it too. I guess ;)

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  4. Oh, love, with your history I completely understand your worries. But you kept the appointment, which means that you're taking care of yourself the best way that you can -- that's all any of us can do, right? (((HUGS)))

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    1. I knew I couldn't try to get myself healthy without getting a better idea of where I'm starting from, so I knew I had to go. Of course, I knew that for a year before I made an appointment! I'm trying, anyway, so that's something. Thanks for the hugs!!

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  5. Yep yep yep. How you could not have a complicated relationship to health matters? I am happy to hear you taking care of yourself and sharing the victories with us. Because that's what this is: victory. How do you exercise around a broken toe?

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    1. Suddenly those "chair aerobics" exercise DVDs at the library are making sense.

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    2. Exercising around the toe is not easy. Upper body strength training, squats, sit ups, etc. I think by next week I can probably start walking again as long as I wear my good shoes and buddy tape the toe well. Running has to wait because of the pounding. If I was at a gym I could probably bike or use the eliptical, but I'm not, so that's out.

      Thanks for calling it a victory. I like thinking of it that way.

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  6. Don't worry, you're probably fine. And don't be surprised if you get good news. Last year I had my first colonoscopy. I finally had the proof to show Kellie that I didn't have my head up my ass.

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    1. Ha!! Thankfully I have a few years before the colonoscopy. Really not looking forward to that one!

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  7. As hard as the waiting and uncertainy is, there can be some relief in knowing...whatever the outcome, because then you know what you are dealing with!

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    1. There's definitely relief in knowing. I just have to remind myself that if things are OK today, there's no need to freak out about the future just yet. I have a tendency to get ahead of myself sometimes.

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  8. I can understand why this would be hard for you but good for you for going! Christie's right, it is a victory. When did you break your toe? Yikes.

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    1. Forming good habits has to be the most exhausting thing ever so I appreciate the classification of victory!

      I broke my toe about 2 hours before we left for vacation. I was rushing around without shoes on and slammed it into the kitchen cabinet, which, incidentally, I do all the time but clearly not with as much gusto as I mustered that fateful day.

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  9. I've been avoiding all doctors and otherwise for a while now. I just don't want to know. Also, I'm lazy. Also, also . . . I'm really bad at taking care of myself. Others? Fine. But me? Not so much.

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    1. I'm really not good at taking care of myself either. I'm working on it, but its sure is hard. Worth it, but hard.

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  10. Is it a cultural thing to go for a regular health check-up? I rarely hear of it happening over in the UK. We go when we're sick, that's the end of it.

    Hope the results are ones you want to hear.

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    1. There's a lot of push to visit the doctor annually for routine blood work and the like. Then they have a bunch of tests that we're supposed to get at certain times like mammograms and colonoscopies. There are some doctors who are against this, others for.

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  11. Just a word of advice...do not, I repeat, do NOT schedule a physical and a routine gyn exam too close together...that is wayyyyyy too much! Especially if you go to the dentist a couple weeks later! I wonder how far we are from instant results!

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    1. I have to go visit the lady doctor too, but worse yet, I have to find a new one. My last one closed up her practice and she was a new one when we moved to a new area. Alas, I have to do it sooner rather than later, but you're right, it's just awful.

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  12. glad you went. i go each year. better to know what you're dealing with than have something sneak up on you. i totally get it about the health issues and not wanting to be a burden. i hear you, sista. i'm going with the positive. now get away from the phone and do something else. :)

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    1. Luckily I've been busy enough to not be thinking about it constantly, but now that it's Friday and I know they won't call until at least Monday, I'm really wishing they'd call already!

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  13. Good for you for fighting against that fear and going. I hate the Dr., too, but somehow manage to drag myself for my well-woman exam year after year. Not fun at all.

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    1. They need to find a way to make us want to go. Kids get lollipops and stickers, why don't we get a prize?

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  14. Good for you for going! You're a good parent! :) Wishing you the most boring doctor's report ever. :)

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    1. Thanks so much. In this case, boring is good!

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  15. Go find something to do and try not to worry about the call from the doctor. Waiting on a doctor's call is the worst. I bet that you are fine and I hope that you are.

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    1. Thanks so much for the kind words. I'm keeping busy. Mostly :)

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  16. Brave woman. I hear your fear and hope you feel proud of yourself for taking care of this health business. I hate taking care of myself by going to docs/dentists and hate the idea of anyone else having to take care of me. I hear you, sister. Fingers crossed.

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    1. I am glad that I did it. Thank you for your kind words.

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  17. I'm glad you're taking this step in taking care of yourself. I lost my job about 6 months ago and haven't found another one yet. I can't afford to go & I feel like going to a free clinic is giving up. But I have to go to get my meds refilled. Scared doesn't begin to cover it.

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    1. Not having health insurance is really difficult. I'm sorry you're going through that. Thankfully we have coverage (crappy, but we have it). I hope you can get some soon so you can take care of yourself too.

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  18. I'm noticing those aches and pains more and more these days too. And fatigue. And...that groaning sound I make when I sit down or get up. The over 40 groan. ;)

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    1. The fatigue! What is with that? I keep wondering how much sleep do I need to get to not feel so tired all the time. I'm pretty sure whatever the number, I really don't have time for it!

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  19. Good for you for taking this step, even if it is scary. Now could you tell me how to force my husband to do the same thing?!

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    1. No, I'm sorry, I can't tell you that. I wish I could!

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