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 Responses to “I’m Not Sure I Want To Know.”

  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.

  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::

    • 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.

  3. kristin says:

    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!

    • 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 😉

  4. IASoupMama says:

    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)))

    • 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!!

  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?

    • cynk says:

      Suddenly those “chair aerobics” exercise DVDs at the library are making sense.

    • 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.

  6. Joe says:

    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.

  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!

    • 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.

  8. Stacie says:

    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.

    • 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.

  9. mistyslaws says:

    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.

  10. Considerer says:

    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.

    • 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.

  11. Andrea says:

    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!

    • 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.

  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. :)

    • 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!

  13. Mamarific says:

    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.

  14. rarasaur says:

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

  15. dorothyadele says:

    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.

  16. Robbie K says:

    I dread those too.

  17. 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.

  18. Patti B. says:

    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.

    • 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.

  19. Linda Roy says:

    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. 😉

    • 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!

  20. 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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