Every now and then a situation comes up in which I think about how different things would be if I ruled the world. Usually, this happens when my friend and I have volunteered together and are not happy with how the project was run. As we leave, we discuss all the ways we would have made it better and give the organization a strike. Two strikes and they are out. Yes, we are volunteer snobs. And we are okay that.
Then there are the times when I fly solo when it comes to ruling the world. This is one of those times. If I ruled the world, chocolate would be a major food group. Izzy would have been killed off of Grey's Anatomy, not George. And if I ruled the world, doctor's offices would NOT be allowed to leave messages on a Friday afternoon.
Last Tuesday, I went in for my routine yearly exam. Only this time it wasn't quite routine as Dr. M. decided that I needed to have an ultrasound and it needed to be done in the next two weeks. This was due to some nasty pains I have been experiencing during "that time"-basically, feeling like I am being stabbed in the right ovary with a very hot, very sharp knife, which makes me want to rip them both out and sell them on eBay (it's not like I'm using them for anything), which apparently you can't actually do. Well, no one currently is anyway-I checked. In addition to that, she couldn't get a good exam on the little sucker.
Luckily for me, I was able to get an appointment the next day. Goody. I was not looking forward to drinking 50 bazillion gallons of water and then having someone press on my bladder. I even tried to find a loophole to get out of the water drinking, but was shot down (boo!). So, I drank my 2 bottles of water, declared myself the water chugging champion, and then threw up a good portion of it. (I'm pretty sure that means I have to relinquish my title). Naturally, I did this at work. Fortunately, there were no witnesses (the pie eating contest scene from "Stand by Me" is coming to mind).
I got to the clinic and was asked if I drank all my water. "Yes I did." It's not my fault she didn't ask if I kept it all down. Naturally, they were running 20 minutes late for my appointment, which I guess was my punishment for not being forthcoming about the water. Anyway, the image taker did her thing, verified with the radiologist that she took enough pictures and sent me on my merry way, telling me my doctor would have the results the next day.
Before I left my initial appointment, Dr. M. said not to panic if I get a call from her. Sometimes, they just have to explain something, she said. If all is well, I would get a little postcard. We have caller ID at work, and knowing she was getting the results on Thursday, my heart skipped and I quickly glanced at the number whenever the phone rang. At the end of the day, no one from the clinic called and life was good (except for the whole dead possum in my yard situation).
Friday, on my way to work, I stopped at the lab to have my blood drawn for diabetes and cholesterol tests, which are standard tests for me. Once again, I spent the day with my heart skipping a beat every time the phone rang at work. And at the end of the day, I was in the clear. No news is good news-my post card is in the mail! Woo-hoo!
And then I got home. And I heard the answering machine beeping. And I checked the Caller ID. And it was the clinic, asking me to call them before 5:00. And it was 5:11. If I hadn't gone into work late because of going to the lab, I wouldn't have stayed late and I would have been home in time to call them back. But no, I had to wait until Monday. Two whole days to speculate as to what they found. Dr. M. said they would just send a post card if everything was normal, after all.
"The voice was cheery," I thought. "Cheery voices don't deliver bad news."
"You're fine." Inner Voice told me. "It could be any number of things. If it was urgent, they would have called you at work, like they did the other day when they wanted you to recheck your blood pressure."
I tried not to think about it. I tried to think of other things, but it kept creeping back. "Do I have ovarian cancer? No one has died or gotten sick yet this year. Everyone will be relieved it's not their turn yet."
"You're not dying," Inner Voice said.
"Why did the image taker ask how long I have been experiencing the pains when she was listening to the blood flow to my ovaries? Why was the right so much louder than the left? Who is going to take care of my dogs? If I die, I will get to be with James again and won't have to live with the pain of missing him anymore, but what will happen to our boys?"
"Nothing is going to happen to the boys because you are fine."
I caught my brother on Facebook. He told me I was fine-that I was always fine-and never to say ovaries again. Then he stopped speaking to me. My brother is pretty sure I am a hypochondriac. I am not a hypochondriac. I am a pessimistic worry-wort.
Saturday, I did a volunteer project that kept me occupied for several hours. Then I went to the 1860's re-enactment baseball game and that kept me occupied for awhile. Sunday, I did a 5-mile hike, most of which I walked alone, with evil thoughts creeping back into my head.
Sunday afternoon, I had too much time on my hands and all I could think about was what the doctor's office was calling about. I looked at my dogs and started to cry. "Oh, for the love of God. You are NOT dying." Apparently, Inner Voice has a bitchy side. She obviously is not getting enough chocolate.
I planned to call the doctor the minute the office opened at 8:00 on Monday morning. However, I was decorating my boss's office for his 50th birthday at that time while he was at the post office because someone decided to come in early to check all the mouse traps that another someone insisted be set because she is tired of finding "presents" on her desk every freakin' morning. (Note to Universe: I am so done with rodents). So I called at 8:15.
I should really listen to Inner Voice, even when she is being mean and yelling at me. My ultrasound and pap were normal, but they did find a 2 mm fibroid tumor, which I was assured is a non-cancerous fibroid and not a "bad" tumor. I have done a lot of research on fibroids because my co-ruler of the volunteer universe had them several years ago and we were scared as to what that meant. I reassured her they were nothing to worry about; now I am going to need her to do the same for me. However, I was so relieved, I started to cry. Then I went into my co-worker's office and did a happy dance.
And now I am wondering if Inner Voice was right about this, what else is she right about? Because there is one other thing she's been saying I would definitely be very happy to have her be right about.
Please note: while I have written this with a light-hearted tone, I do not take the subject matter lightly. Humor is one of the only ways I know how to deal with things. I have two dear friends who are undergoing cancer tests-one for skin cancer and one for Leukemia and I am terrified for them and pray they are okay. Last year, my best friend had an ovarian cancer scare, which I blogged about at the time. My partner-in-crime when I first met James is a breast cancer survivor as is another very special friend of mine. A new friend of mine lost his beautiful wife to brain cancer way too young. Another friend lost her mother way before she should have to pancreatic cancer. Cancer steals way too many innocent lives and I sincerely hope to see a cure in my lifetime. Ladies, PLEASE take your health seriously. Do your exams and if something doesn't seem right, make your doctor listen to you. It could literally save your life.