Friday, February 29, 2008

Being Well Hydrated is Overrated

It totally is. Peeing 4x's in as many hours at a fairly new job is not winning me any admirers here in the office. And I work somewhere it is pretty obvious to everyone when I go.

Also, it causes untold dryness to your hands. I thought I was HYDRATING myself, not drying my skin the fuck out.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Love is Figuring out Technology

I love that I just figured out how to get photos off my phone.

Exhibit A:

This is from this past summer when I was on Fire Island.

I love the beach. I love technology. And I love that I finally figured this out after almost a year.

All Is Well.

The doctor called around 8:30 last night. My girly parts are fine. However, my colon is misbehaving. Why is it easier to discuss girl issues than colon issues?

Anyway, other than the Chinese water torture I had to endure in the shower this morning, the fact I couldn't sleep because of the pain, and the hormonal need to weep... all is well.

Thank you for all your kind thoughts!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

What's Making Me Smile Today

Mmmmmm. Yummy.
(Sparkling Pomegranate specifically)


Seriously. Don't read any farther if you don't want that kind of information about me.

Have you scrolled on past? Hit the little red X in the corner?

Still here?

Okay, not only is my body so sensitive right now that I can't wear a bra and moving in some ways is painful but the stuff they made me drink for the test yesterday gives you diarrhea. So there's that. And now my body has been kind enough to bestow my period on me.

Last but not least:

Dear all physicians,

When your patient knows you have test results and you do not call for more than 24 hours when they've left (a very restrained) 2 messages - they will assume the worst. Because if the tests showed nothing YOU WOULD HAVE CALLED AND SAID SO.

If this is not the case, and the results showed nothing, do a neurotic woman a favor and CALL ALREADY.

A Very Neurotic Woman

PS - How many times can I call my physician without becoming THAT patient?

Hypersensitivity Sucks Donkey Balls


Seems that whenever I have to take steroids, like for when they don't want me to go into anaphylactic shock from the dye they are going to inject into my veins, I end up with hypersensitivity.

What does that mean exactly? It means that simply leaning against a wall or someone resting a hand on my shoulder or God forbid I forget and sling my purse onto my shoulder - it HURTS. A lot.

So far it isn't as bad as the last time this happened. That time it got to the point where the mere act of breathing, which caused my lungs to expand against my ribcage was EXCRUCIATING.

Still... sucks donkey balls.

Also, as a side note: I have confirmation that the results of the dye injecting tests are on my doctor's desk with a note to call me. Since last night. Actually, as of this writing, there are now 2 notes to call me. And yet I wait.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Early Warning System

After 37 years I have finally realized the early warning system my body has for telling me something is wrong.

Up until yesterday I always thought my body hated exercise. Everytime I would decide to start exercising I would get sick. I still remember the first time in 8th grade when I decided it would be a good idea to start running. Now I've never mentioned here that I don't run. Not even as a child. Not even if I was being chased by a person-eating bear. DO. NOT. RUN. But for some reason, at the age of 13, I decided to start. I figured I would just push through whatever discomfort I felt and keep going. Everyone told me you just had to push past the pain and then you'd get that runner's high. Not so much for me. What I got was a worsening pain in my side until I could barely walk. And two days later I got an emergency appendectomy. I have never run again.

Since then there have been more minor things. I joined a gym and tried to push through the exhaustion. You'll have more energy if you exercise everyone told me. Well, I wore myself out to the point my doctor discovered I need B12 shots. I get an urge to start doing yoga again and on day two get a sinus infection. I don't know about you but I can't do downward facing dog when someone is jamming razor blades into my sinuses. By the time I'm better I've lost the will to exercise.

So I have exercised in starts and stops for quite a few years my whole life. At the end of December, right when I was getting ready to start working a new full time job I have the overwhelming desire to start working out again. So the next morning I joined a gym down the street and paid for a three month membership (I'm nothing if not aware of my shortcomings with sticking it out.) figuring I could re-up if I managed to keep going.

A couple of days in I started waking up with lower abdominal pain. I thought I'd stressed the muscles in my lower back/abs doing nautilus so I laid off those exercises. The pain didn't go away.

By this point it was January. I was in a new job and for the first time ever, didn't have insurance. One month of no insurance. And while I willed my children and husband to not get sick or break any bones (especially bones with ski club starting) I seemed to have forgotten to put my own body on notice. My body thought it would sneak in a UTI. A dandy little infection I hadn't felt the burn of in so many years the doctor couldn't find what they had prescribed last. So yes, I couldn't hold out long enough to forgo the self-pay rates. I told her of my abdominal pain and wondered if it was an early warning of the UTI. She treated the infection and said if the other pain didn't go away to come back in February when my insurance kicked in.

Three weeks into January I gave up the gym for yoga at home hoping to bring some balance and flexibility into my workout and body. The pain got worse and I couldn't eat a cup of yogurt without feeling so full it was uncomfortable. The yoga workout got shortened and tamed. Come February I was back at the doctors. She sent me for an xray. (which, what the hell? no bones were involved.) The diagnosis was mild constipation. Miralax was prescribed and I went home. I would like to mention here that I am no stranger to constipation. I was sure this wasn't the problem but I'm always up for being wrong. I figured it wouldn't hurt so I took the medicine and took care of the mild constipation.

The pain. It was sometimes okay and sometimes worse. I was not losing weight but exercising and eating less than I have in years. Then the nausea started. Now I've heard that when some women get nauseous they don't eat. They feel sick so why would they eat. I eat nonstop. So for three days now I've been eating every salty food I can find. (Has to be salty and bread-like)

I went back to the doctor yesterday. (She's actually a PA. And she's great. I love our PA.) She checked me out and suggested an ultrasound. Then she wanted to check in with my physician. Now although I know this is fab of her, she's never done this before. She came back and said no ultrasound. You are going for a CT scan. And another xray. And have a follow-up a week later with the doctor. There were no suggestions of what might be wrong. There were no speculations of any kind. There were no assurances. Nothing. And when I walked out of that office I realized that this is the first time I have EVER left a doctor's office without some diagnosis or suggestion or speculation of what might be the problem.

Now my intuition has been buzzing very loudly since mid-January or so. I've been afraid to voice my concern because this is not a condition you talk about unless you've been diagnosed. Even then people don't like to talk about it. They are afraid of it. It's not something you throw around lightly. Of course you don't have ovarian cancer. Why would you even suggest something like that? What is wrong with you?

I must add here that I have spoken to someone at work about my symptoms (no mention of my intuition's diagnosis). She informed me yesterday that her daughter had ovarian cancer at the age of 27 (cancer free for 5 years). The symptoms were extremely similar. I can not tell you what a relief it was to be able to talk to someone about my fears without them telling me I will be fine - it's probably not that at all. Don't worry until you find out. (The words from the one well meaning friend I voiced my concerns to.) It was a relief that someone just said, "I'm so sorry you're going through this." And she also suggested I read surviver stories if I felt the need to read about it on the internet. Brilliant woman. I may have to buy her a gift.

Still, I haven't done that and I haven't done more than a preliminary search of symptoms. I've been busy telling myself that it may just be some kind of infection. It may not be this dreaded thing. But in my heart of hearts, I'm not buying it. I would totally be okay to be told I'm wrong. It has happened before. I'm up for the humiliation of being called a hypochondriac. Really, maybe it is all in my head. Maybe it's some totally innocuous thing that can be fixed with a mild laxative. Wait, not that. That didn't work. Maybe an antibiotic or a D&C or maybe it's just early menopause and I'll have to live with it for a while. I can do that. I just don't want to feel the need to exercise ever again.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I have realized I am not one of those people who move through life gracefully.

In the physical sense, I am clumsy. I bang into things, I trip, I slip, slide and fall. A lot. So, NOT graceful.

In the way I comport myself, I am far from graceful. I get angry, I yell, I do not hide my tiredness or illness from my family or friends or even acquaintances. I am cranky and in your face. Again, so NOT graceful.

This is not to say I don't strive to lead a life of grace. I'm just not very good at it. I worry because if I became really ill, not sinus infection or cold type ill but SERIOUSLY ill, I would not be one of those woman you hear that handled it with grace. You know the ones. "She kept her kids lives the same. She didn't want them to suffer because of her illness. She didn't hide it but made it okay." No, that is not me. I want it to be me. I don't want to scar my children if I become ill. But I'm afraid I would.

Do you like how I discuss this like it is some possibility far off in the future that might never happen? Are you saying to yourself, right this very minute, why worry about something that may never happen? Well, you are right. It might not. Or it may. I've been feeling very much less than okay for about two months now. I have a follow up appointment today to try to figure out what the hell is wrong. I have put off googling what has been in the back of my head for so long because really, why would I pick that illness out of the millions out there? But someone called me on it. Asked if I had looked it up on the internet. It broke my subconscious resolve. NEVER GOOGLE MAJOR ILLNESSES YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE in hopes it will prove you wrong. It rarely does. And in this case, only confirmed what I feared.

Now the select people I've discussed this fearful finding with have of course told me it is all nonsense. I am wrong. It will be nothing. What else could they say really? And yes, I hope they are right. I hope to get on this blog tomorrow or Monday and say "I WAS SO VERY WRONG." That would be lovely. But sometimes your gut knows things and I'm really afraid this is one of those times. And if not, I will totally eat crow and enjoy it.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Some of the Things I Have Learned in the Past Year

  • I need to work full time.

  • I am needy in the physical contact, attention sense of the word.

  • I am not as independent as I always believed.

  • My job skills are not as refined as I'd like.

  • I do not like people who lie.


So yes, I'm now working full time. Outside of my home. For a paycheck. For the first time in over 13 years.

In many ways it is much easier than anything else I have done in the last 13 years. So much pressure is off because, hello, I have to work. The thing I'm having the hardest time with, two things actually, but not because they are related, and I'm just going to keep sticking in phrases in-between commas until this is the longest sentence ever, so it all boils down to... you guessed it, time.

There are a few things here and there that I WANT to do. Like take the kids to the doctors and parent-teacher conferences and stay home with them when they are sick occasionally and do things for other people that I just can't seem to find time to do now. In which I mean I can't do these things in a timely manner.

This bothers me greatly.

On the other hand, one thing I have learned in the past year is that I MUST work full time. I need to feel like I'm contributing to my household in a financial way. I need to not feel that I'm stuck in this marriage because I can't support myself or the cost of a divorce. Not to say that's what I want, or that I make enough to realistically do either of those things, but I need to feel like I could if I had to.

Another aspect of this job is that I don't enjoy it nearly as much as my last one. It's okay. The people are fine. Mostly. It is not challenging enough. And I was brought in to make change and that avenue is not currently open to me. Not to say that it won't be. And not to say I don't have a few things to learn first. I mean this time is probably the best thing for the situation. BUT, the inevitable but, I am not a patient woman.

So, in closing, all this to say, I'm working full time.