So last week pretty much sucked. I went to the doctor last Wednesday and while I was there he found a lump in my breast. I had to set up an appointment for a mammogram and ultrasound but had to wait until Monday. The receptionist informed me that I should be VERY grateful I got that appointment and didn’t have to wait two or more weeks. I just love gratitude don’t you?.
I did go Monday accompanied by my outrageously awesome husband who took the day off of work and I am happy to report that everything is A – O.K.
Now statistically speaking finding a lump is really nothing to be too concerned about. At least that’s what the statistic people (whoever the hell they are) have to say. I must tell you though I had to really WORK at not thinking about the possibilities of the remaining 2%. The result was me walking around for five days like a freaking zombie. I kept uttering words like “it’s most likely nothing….nothing at all” but my sub-conscious thinking kicked the ever loving CRAP out of me. I had anxiety attacks out of the blue, ate barely enough to keep a bird alive and did absolutely nothing but lay about and stare at the TV which is VERY out of character for me. The end result was a disaster of a house, children with nothing clean to wear to school and a pile of paperwork sky high. It’s times like these I can clearly see just how much I contribute. I need to pat myself on the back more often!
My skills as a homemaker extraordinaire was one of many observations I made about my life after such a scare. I realized that I need to take better care of myself. Life is a gift and I kick this precious gift in the teeth far too often. I learned that my immense respect for the bravery of women (those I know personally and those I do not) who have survived breast cancer (and those who have not) is not NEARLY good enough. Immense respect times fifty five million wouldn’t cover it.
Here was a not so good realization: I have been bestowed the honor of not one but TWO insanely selfish mothers.
Mother number one INFORMED me that my theory behind the importance of family medical history was naive and silly or something to that effect. I know I have mentioned this ad nausium but it’s worth repeating for those of us silly enough to think medical history could save our lives. She SAID these days they can run all sorts of tests to determine just about ANYTHING you would need to know. That medical information is just an excuse to invade the privacy of birthmothers everywhere.
FIRST of all can you IMAGINE that conversation with your insurance company?
“I would like to have my doctor run every test known to man, how much of that will you cover?”
“You are kidding right?”
“Well, now actually I’m not kidding. I am adopted, you must have some sort of exception for US?! After all WE’RE SPECIAL!”
FYI E…….Mammograms aren’t even routinely recommended for women my age UNLESS there is a history of breast cancer IN THE FAMILY.
Now for mother number two: I love her dearly (why do I feel the need to preface that? Oh, wait I know… so everyone knows I’m not ungrateful) but she is a MAJOR hypochondriac. She has had health issues that were very real and very scary but lives her life in a proverbial unnecessary sick bubble. Come to think of it she does not live her life -she survives it. She also has to be the center of attention. If I get the flu SHE gets the flu. If I have a headache SHE gets a headache. She has created an entire personality on one coveted reaction from others: sympathy.
When I was young I spent countless hours being dragged to the doctors office. I am NOT exagerating, I mean I was at the doctors office at LEAST once a week. The putrid pink liquid penicillin was a staple in our fridge right next to the ketchup and milk. Most of the time I wasn’t even sick but my mom is very convincing. So much so that often I would actually end up feeling unwell just to appease her.
The thing about my childhood “illnesses” was that my mother made a HUGE spectacle of my being sick. It went something like this; I am so worried. I am sick with concern. My heart can’t take this. It so hard on me having such a sick daughter. So even through me she got what she needed, her sympathy fix.
Last week I called my mom really needing comfort and reassurance, knowing better but calling anyway. I told her I was scheduled for the tests on Monday afternoon. Surprisingly my mom was supportive in her own way. She said when she had gone through it in the past it turned out to be nothing. Your’s will be nothing too she assured me. Maybe not exactly what I needed but I did get off the phone feeling a little better.
Fast forward to Monday morning around 11:00. I see that it is mom on the caller ID and assume she is calling to wish me luck today. She actually called to tell me that her doctors appointment went well.
You didn’t tell me you had a doctors appointment.
Yes well I had a sore and tender breast so I called and the nurse said I should come in and have it looked at. I made an appointment right away for this morning and since it was so important they squeezed me in. (Just what you want to hear when your going for a mamogram right? SQUEEZED ME IN;o)
Everything looks good but they are going to keep an eye on me.
I think to myself~You’re kidding me right? You have GOT to be kidding me.
Soooo what are you up to?
What am I up to? Well I am just passing the time until MY appointment this afternoon.
Sooooo I filled her in. Again.
Yesterday she called me really mad. She was upset because I had not called HER to let her know how it had gone.
“I was very worried”
“I didn’t sleep all night”
“Why didn’t you call me?”
Am I crazy to think that if she was truly so concerned she would have picked up the phone and called ME? Why wait until I call you unless………..unless………you were looking to make someone feel guilty? Sympathy perhaps?
What IS it that makes them both feel the need to try and make me feel guilt and sympathy? What am I supposed to learn from this? Why does the Universe think I am so dense that I would need not one but TWO teachers in the form of mothers? If I figure out what the lesson is will they stop being so damn selfish? Just asking.