After no holds barred à la boulangerie (French for “bakery”) in Paris whereupon I gained seven pounds in seven days despite excessive walking and ab workouts (coughing due to second-hand cigarette smoke), I’m sitting in my GP’s office with a point form list in my hand (my LMLotFM sits beside me: for comfort and as evidence).
Thermography and/or mammogram? (implants)
What did he [already] test my blood for?
Tired—over a year! (at least since I became Vegan-demoted-to-Vegetarian)
Before he can finish his greeting, I’m out of the gate with, “I think I have lymphoma.”
His brow furrows and he blinks several times and I wait for him to breathe and I lean forward with expectant expression and he looks at my mom (she’s smirking) and he clears his throat.
He contemplates me briefly before replying, “What makes you think that?”
Glad he asked.
“Well, Dr. B, I’ve spent a small fortune on naturopaths and holistic practitioners and sent my spit away and the test results came back with lymphoma …” Before he can interject, I quickly continue (I want to make sure he gets all the details), “Plus my kidneys are shutting down, well, at least the one, and my adrenals aren’t functioning properly—oh, and something with my large intestine—oh, and every time I turn sideways I pee my pants, I’ve been doing my Kegels (lie) …”
I pause at the fib, and he takes the opportunity, “Well, your lymphatic system would affect your spleen and liver (something something) …”
I interrupt, “Maybe I have a tumour on my spleen that’s making me pee when I cough! Here, feel my throat, the glands are swollen. I researched the Internet, and it say that’s a sign.”
My mom laughs out loud. (She knows the human body better than any doctor I’ve met. She loves the human body and its functions and used to be the best Level 3 First Aid Instructor. She reads anatomy books—for funsies. Really.)
Doctor, confused, “So, wait a minute, who said you have lymphoma?”
“Some lady in Ontario. Also, can I please have a colonscopy? My sister has [bowel-related] cancer, and she was perfectly healthy when the physical signs showed up. I want to catch it early. Look, I even brought my mom as living proof I qualify. She has Crohn’s Disease, right, Mom?” She nods. “See. She’s had parts removed—twice! Right, Mom?”
I look at my mom again; she nods affirmatively.
He starts scribbling notes on his pad, “How old is your sister?”
“Fifty-ish, but I want to catch it sooner, if … Also, I’ve been tired for at least a year. I read that’s a sign, too. And I know you told me my pH doesn’t really matter but Google says it does, all cancers start with low pH, doc,” I say smugly.
He’s getting carpel tunnel scratching away on his pad when my mom ever so helpfully pipes in, “Sister-in-law, she’s your sister-in-law.” (Traitor.)
He halts, puts down his pen, “She’s not your blood sister?”
I glance down, abashed, “But she was perfectly healthy.” Then reinvigorated, “Prevention! Okay, fine, yes, I mean—no, she’s not my blood sister, but I’ve been beside myself with anxiety—”
He notes, “I can see that.”
I frown. (I figure there’s no need to mention the paranoia, too.)
“I’m exhausted all the time.”
I’m probably exhausting him, but he graciously goes into a long explanation (read: diversion) of how the internal system works and blah blah blah. No, I can’t just order up a colonoscopy, but “we can do some additional testing” something “fecal” and if that comes up with anything unusual then I can have the colonoscopy. It’s at this point that I’m trying to decide if I want something “unusual” to show up or not—that’s how obsessed with the whole holistic health thing, get-to-the-‘bottom’-of-it I have become.
Instead, I say, “I can’t poop on command, doc. Peeing is one thing …”
But now he’s busy reading my file on his computer, “Let’s see, yes, you were here just a couple months ago, and we did all kinds of blood work, really good cholesterol levels, really good. Kidneys, good. No, it looks like you’re very healthy.”
I counter, “My glands.” I tilt my neck up toward him as though they might be bulging through the flesh.
Mom, “Common cold.”
He looks at her, then back at me. I intensify my urgent yearning, and he indicates the examination table. I perk up right away and hop on. He does a manual check of my armpits and my spleen and my liver. Nothing unusual. I can tell I’m losing ground. I do feel better (mentally), but just in case I mutter, “I do have a high pain tolerance”.
I acquiesce, and I’m so disappointed he almost seems to feel sorry for me we’ve found nothing unusual.
I leave with a physician signed Examination Request Form for a chest X-ray, fecal examination, and more blood work. Ha!
I totally forget to ask about the mammogram (deflation) so I book myself an appointment for a Thermography test (something similar but not really and not covered by our public medical system so $250 TYVM). I call to book an appointment for the free mammograms we are entitled to if qualified (I qualify!) only to find out patients with breast implants need a referral from their doctor—D’oh!
By the way, my sister-in-law is booked for treatments et al. in the next couple weeks. She’s gone the gamut of organics and is now emotionally and mentally equipped for conventional. The silver lining so far is our family is much closer, and we no longer think each of us is ‘a little different’ (raised eyebrow)—now we know it for sure!
I’ve decided that after I’m done with the pills, potions, powders, extracts, electrolytes, electrodermals, ‘energy field’ drops, ‘exact amount’ drops, bentonite, baking soda, psyllium husks, pH strips, and homeopathic remedies along with the self-administered repeating daily smorgasbord of positivity quips set to chime seven times a day on my iPhone and the chants, mantras, meditations, affirmations, all other Zen wielding situations plus green diet flatulations to get this body’s subjugation—that’s it, stick an aluminum-free-magnetized-chakra-cleansing fork in me—I’m done.
What have I (re)learned?
I make my own life ‘seem’ difficult (or easy, hmm). Thoughts are (tangible) things. What you think about you bring about. (Or maybe not.) Nothing really matters. Let go and let God. Enjoy the moment (this one.) If it feels good, do it. Big picture good, not just this very moment good. (Is that an in-the-moment contradiction?) Trust intuition not fear. Blah blah blah.
Yoghurt, chocolate (in moderation), forest, fresh air, friends, family, fiction novel (non-metaphysical/spiritual—how novel!), deep breaths, warm baths, just allow the days to pass. (In moderation.)
(I wonder if there’s a natural cure for paranoia.)