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Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge Day 12 #HAWMC : Stream of Consciousness

Posted Apr 12 2012 12:44pm

Day twelve of the  WEGO Health Activist Writer’s Month  has dawned, wherein I’m challenged to write each day in April about health. 

Today’s prompt: Start with the sentence “_______” to tell your readers what’s going on in your head at this moment. Just write for 15 minutes, don’t stop, don’t edit. Post!

I have to admit: this will be a hard one, not editing what comes into my mind. Almost as hard as drawing a caricature of myself in high school art class. But not quite!

So I take a deep breath, and…here goes:

Yesterday I decided to get medical help for the chest pains i’ve been experiencing for the last two weeks. i thought they would go away, but they didn’t. i had them a year ago and the er determined nothing was wrong with my heart. the pain was of unknown cause. but someone told me this week i was worth it and should get it checked out. my primary care physician’s office manager insisted i go to the er since it was chest pains. i argued with her that i spent over a thousand dollars out of my own pocket for being checked a year ago, with no results. and it told her i’m not dead after two weeks of this. she did not like my suggestion that i go to immeiate care, but that’s what I did. they took me right in…no wait. the nurse was kind, the pa impossibly kind. he ruled out kidney, lung, heart, and cancer problems. he diagnosed it as an inflammation of the cartilage. just take ibuprofen 3 times a day and it should go away in 2 weeks max. really? i was astounded. i thought surely it was a return of cancer, or a stress-related syndrome that would haunt me for the rest of my life. or it was kidney failure and i’d be on dialysis until i met my Maker. i got a reprieve. and that was unbelievable. did i deserve such treatment? was i worth it?

we never know what will happen when we rise up and do something about our health. i’ve never been afraid in the past to go to a doctor or er to get something checked out. but back then i had company insurance, tiny co-pays and deductibles, and lots of money to pay anything that came up extra. but not anymore. i have to pay many expenses for unsold property languishing in this pitiful economy. and i never would hve talked back to an office manager in a medical office. i think she was just worried about being sued by me if i had serious problems with chest pains and didn’t go to the er. i told her of my financial situation and how i didn’t have time to wait five hours in the er, but she showed no sympathy. so i hung up and took myself where she told me not to: immediate care.

The new jan doesn’t care so much what  people think. she has to do things alone now. i never ever went to something like this, some serious appointment by myself. my son was with me last year when i went to the er. a friend joined me when i had a rib xray and bone scan last year and when i was told the results showed no cancer. but no one was there as i waited. i took deep breaths, prayed fervently, medicated on my life and even wrote in my journal. i brought a book along to read, but at the last minute also brought my journal where i wrote down forgiveness entries. in that journal in the waiting room i wrote down what i thought the diangosis might be and what i hoped it to be. when the doctor told me to come out and look at my chest x-ray i was afraid. why would he have me look at it unless it was bad. the medical staff looked somber and i just knew i was in for it. but i had a calm about me. i thought of that poster i blogged about a few days ago: be calm, it’s a balm. the x-ray showed a normal heart, normal kidneys, normal lungs–and no cancer. wow. he told me to take it easy on my left side and could tell my left side was weaker than my right due to the lymphedema. so i can’t lift weights anymore with my arms until this is cleared up. and take it easy swinging my arms during runs and walks and sitting up straighter on my bike. maybe many people with lymphedema do get chondritis on the side where the lymphedema is. maybe this is another side effect they don’t tell you about. but still, i’m thrilled. if all i have to do is take over-the -counter ibuprofin and back off of weight lifting and movements that cause pain on my left side, i’m golden.

gratefulness fills my heart on this day 12. i can’t complain about the cloudy weather or anything else. it’s a new day. let me use it to help others, be thankful, forgive, and write. it’s a grand new day!


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