I know, I know, it can't possible be true. How can that vibrant, full of life, young looking woman POSSIBLY be 40? And TWO kids? The hell you say....
But, yes, my friends, it's true. My mind says I'm 25.
My body is CLEARLY telling me otherwise.
And the older I get, the more I regress emotionally.
I say things to myself like ....
The reality is...
"Wow, she looks like my mom."
I am a mom. I am a wife. I am a daughter, sister and friend.
I knew that tons of people in my family had been diagnosed with different forms of cancer. Some had died. But they were old.
Ever heard of that River in Egypt?
I realized that I needed to be more proactive about my own health.
Off to the doctor I went for a physical. She put me through the ringer and immediately sent me to a gastroenterologist for a consult given my family history of colon cancer and the fact that my stomach appeared to be undertaking some sort of revolt over the past few months.
Oh, yeah and the fact that I was 40. (DAMMIT!)
After meeting with the gastro doctor - who I love - he scheduled me for my very first colonoscopy this week.
And then came the comments.
"That test is awful"
"The prep is the WORST"
"Be prepared to spend the night in the bathroom"
"Good luck with THAT!"
And, my all time favorite:
I was a bit nervous - I certainly wasn't looking forward to it - but I was prepared.
Nesting spot set up in the family room? Check.
Fruit punch gatorade to mix that giant bottle of miralax with? Check.
Some nice soft TP and a good book? Check.
I was set.
I soon realized that the anticipation was TOTALLY worse than the actual prep.
I couldn't eat, so Brian had to make dinner for the girls.
No one bothered me, because frankly, they didn't want to be around me.
I read almost an entire book. Granted I was in the bathroom during most of my reading, but still....
All in all, it was actually a little break from responsibility.
Brian and I went in bright and early in the morning and they got me all prepped. I was fine. I wasn't cranky (quite a feat - no food and no coffee? I should get a medal)
They decided to put my IV in my hand (I HATE that. I'm not squeamish, but I don't like IVs in my hand. Seriously. I get all crazy about it and immediately begin to ask when it can come out. Now? Now? NOW?????)
As soon as she stuck me I heard "Uh - oh."
When someone has a needle in your vein, that's not what you want to hear.
Nurse: "I blew a valve."
Me: "That's gonna leave a mark."
The next thing I remember is waking up.
I was home by 10:30, the kids were at school, Brian went back to work, and I spent the entire day lounging on the couch, dozing, eating and watching reruns of "Charmed".
It was a wonderful day.
In a few hours my tummy no longer sounded like Mt. Vesuvius and I was back to normal.
As women and mothers, we often put our own health on the back burner. The kids get regular check-ups. Hell, even the dogs go to the vet once a year.
But we have to be on our death bed to go to the doctor.
We don't have time for regular check ups.
But, we actually aren't.
And we owe it to our families to take care of ourselves and get regular check ups.
Since I had several polyps removed, I realize how lucky I am that I had this test done when I did.
A few more years of waiting could have had disastrous results.
And now I know that I need to keep an eye on this issue.
My biopsy results will be back next week, but the doc is pretty confident that I'm good to go.
I'll have to do it all over again in three years, but now that I know what to expect, it won't be anywhere near as anxiety producing.
Don't ignore your health because you're afraid of what you'll find.
Be proactive so you can be around to see your babies grow up. And your grandbabies someday.
Oh, and yes, it definitely left a mark. But if that's the worst that happened, I can totally deal with it.
Lecture over. Carry on.