For the last few weeks I’ve been feeling pretty, well, shocking to tell you the truth. After escaping that vicious gastro bug without losing too much dignity, I figured it was just the last of the lurgees working their way out of my system. Fast-forward a few weeks and I still felt like I had been hit by a Double Decker bus. Constant nausea, dizziness, exhaustion and headaches were all clear signs of me being up the duff. Only, the chances of that being true are about as high as my chances of going to the toilet alone. NOT very high. But when I started experiencing a very familiar aversion to meat that I had experienced in both my pregnancies, I wondered just how slim the chances actually were. Before you get all excited (or panicked, depending on which side of the fence you are on) I’m NOT pregnant.
I decided to take a test to be safe and like every time you do a test I had very mixed feelings. I knew I wasn’t quite ready to be pregnant again but when you start to see only one visible line you cant help but feel a little stabbing pain, somewhere between your throat and the middle of your chest. I shook it off with a pretend sigh of relief. I mean who am I kidding? What I would have done to see another line appear on that fateful little stick.
Now, not only was I not pregnant, but filled with all sorts of worry. If I’m not pregnant then why the heck am I feeling like I’ve just climbed Mount Everest and why cant I run 2 kms without dying and why cant I go a day without a headache and why for crying out loud is my cycle so out of whack? And then I did it. I made the dreaded mistake. I turned to the Internet. I went against all my own very sound advice and googled my symptoms. I know right? I’m my own worst enemy. I’m a sucker for punishment! This is the problem with living in the 21st century and having too many resources at our disposal, too many people who are Experts and my gosh, way too much information that really only doctors are trained to know.
And then I saw the two words I had dreaded most. CERVICAL CANCER. I sat down and read 15 signs of cervical cancer that woman shouldn’t ignore. Now I know it’s so easy to look too deeply into these matters and form your own crazy prognoses but I have to tell you, I kinda shat myself. (Again I just couldn’t find a better word for shat) I realized I was experiencing 9 of the 15 symptoms listed in this article. NINE!!
I was one of those crazies, I went straight to my kids and just started smothering them in kisses and hugging them so tight they were sure their insides were being tortured. I wondered what it would be like for them to grow up without me. How depressing, tell me about it. But after a few lingering squeezes and a few extra wet kisses, I got on the phone to my doctor. And three hours later I found myself at pathcare with a needle in my arm and blood being drawn into vials. I had to put the word vial in there, it just adds to the drama no?
My appointment to see my doctor was yesterday and while I only had a 24-hour wait, that is the perfect amount of time to go crazy. It’s the perfect amount of time to allow you to go slightly mental, just enough for you to start losing your sh*t and questioning the meaning of it all. It’s the perfect amount of time to start planning your will or better yet writing your kids cards for all their major birthdays and lifetime achievements. I was just about to get out my laptop to start writing down all the important things that my family needed to know. Does my husband even know that I don’t ever want to be on life support and that I have the perfect girl in mind for him to marry when I’m gone?
BUT, most importantly it was the perfect amount of time to surrender my life once and for all to God. The God I profess to believe in everyday, the God I SAY I trust. And so I did. At around 8pm that night, the power went out and I sat in the dark in my lounge all on my own. I thought about the next day and what the doctors may have to tell me. I thought long and hard about the “What ifs” and I thought long and hard about the Why Now? But then I felt a peace, a calm come over me that I cannot quite explain. I got up, lit a candle and went to brush my teeth. I realized I had been sitting in the dark for over an hour listening to my own thoughts and I was ready for bed. I slept better than I have in ages that night, which I’m sure has something do to with me surrendering my worries to God and essentially putting my trust back in him.
I woke up refreshed for the first time in weeks and went to the doctor knowing that whatever I was about to face, God was with me and that no matter what the outcome, I was going to ok.
I’m happy to tell you that I am indeed ok. In every sense of the word. I am WELL. The blood work came back and I have no irregular white blood cells, my liver is in tiptop shape (which I have to say kinda shocked me the most considering how much I drink) and my lungs are clear and strong.
When I asked my doctor what on earth could be going on with me his reply was pretty straightforward. â€˜I’m afraid you have a pretty strong case of what I call MOTHERHOOD! And I giggled. I lay there on his doctors’ bed and giggled like a little girl and realized that he was right. We both knew that since I was perfectly healthy, the only thing causing this pure and utter exhaustion I’ve been feeling lately are the two little rug rats who drive me dilly. Every. Single. Day. But wait the best part is coming. He then asked me ever so sweetly How young are you? and this just about sent me over the edge as I realized I am already at the age where doctors are careful about how they ask me my age. I laughed so hard I almost wet my knickers (another sign of how these kids have taken their toll and wrecked havoc with my worn out body.) I mean yes, How young are you? seemed so much kinder than How old are you, but we both knew the truth.
My age is the real problem at stake here. My energy levels are not quite what they used to be and I, like many of you, have been diagnosed with the rather common virus called Motherhood. I sat there high with relief that my health was in order but then it hit me. There is no cure for this. There is not much I can do to get over this rather vicious virus I have lurking in my tired bones. Even if I had the money to go on an expensive island holiday, this virus is one that stays in your system, one that may never work its way out. Because lets face it do you ever stop being a parent? Even when your kids are grown up?
So, I will feel deeply grateful for my health and pray that my liver stays healthy. Because if there is no cure for the Motherhood virus, you will find me drinking wine by the bottle every other night. OK make that every night.