My 12 Hour War With Cancer: A Kind Of Funny Story!
Many of you know that I have Bi-Polar disorder and I’ve been taking medication for a little over a year. In my case, along with the mood disorder comes an extreme obsession with death. Before I started the medication, the previous 30 to 40 years of my life involved non stop thoughts about suicide. I would spend hours of my day thinking of different ways to kill myself, as well as day dreaming about the reactions it would cause from the people I know. My obsession is what finally drove me into the hospital last year, and as a result, somebody finally figured out what was wrong with me, and got me on the right meds.
After I started my medication, the pendulum swung the other way; now I have an unhealthy fear of death. Sometimes it gets so bad that I can’t sleep at night, because I’m afraid I’ll wake up the next morning dead. I obsess, about the when and the how, and my loved ones that I would be leaving behind, as well as what I would be missing. I mean c’mon, the next season of Dexter is about to start, and it’s football season. I just simply do not have time to die at this point!
Early last week, I had my quarterly check up with my mental health provider. As a precaution, she told me to get a blood test in order to make sure that my medication was not having an adverse effect on my blood sugar and cholesterol. I go the next day to get the blood drawn, and by that night I’m getting a somewhat frantic voice mail from her telling me that there are “some values to the results that she doesn’t understand,” and that I should get into my doctor right away. Of course my mind immediately kicks into panic mode, and I start thinking that this is the beginning of the end for me. The other thought that occurred to me is “why in the fuck is my psychiatrist leaving a panicky call about test results on the voice mail of someone who is constantly obsessed about death? I mean, am I wrong here? What the fuck was she thinking? Leaving me a voice mail that my blood test came back weird, is like leaving Michele Bachmann a voice mail that an army of gay atheist unemployed socialists are on their way to her house to fuck her husband and raid her fridge. Panic is a guaranteed reaction.
The next morning, I make an appointment with my doctor, and I have my psychiatrist fax me the test results so I can take them in with me. At this point my morbid fear of death is getting the best of me, so it’s off to the internet we go, in order to try to make some sense of the results. Really bad idea! After checking out some medical websites, all indications were that I had Leukemia. What the fuck. I immediately go into full blown panic attack mode, which did not make for a very pleasant evening. My emotions got the best of me, and I couldn’t help but get pissed that I was going to die before Bengals owner Mike Brown does.
After all this, it turns out that there was nothing in the blood screen that indicates cancer. My doctor told me that I have a less than one percent chance of having it, and that the test results were an indication that I more likely have some condition that is related to my anemia, which I’ve had all my life. The end result was a drawing of 6 more vials of blood, and I’m waiting for the results of that screen. I also got the “BTW, you need to quit smoking and lose some weight” lecture, because it just wouldn’t be a productive visit to the doctor without getting that talk. Of course, after I left the doctor, my partner and I had a huge laugh over the whole over reacting to the blood test results thing.
I’ve re learned a couple of lessons from this; First off, never look up your test results on the internet on your own. Hell, if you Google the word Anemia, you’ll get a hundred thousand results that are guaranteed to scare the holy shit out of you. Second, I seriously have to get over this morbid obsession with death. I’m only 46 years old, and I’m guessing I still have a lot left in the tank. We’re all born with an expiration date: That’s just the way it is; there is absolutely no point in worrying about what I can’t control. I have plenty of other shit to worry about, like finances, or my job, or my psychotic son finding his way back to my house and killing me. Wait, what? Ah fuck!
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