So, Thursday I got a preliminary diagnosis from someone who will most likely become my new boyfriend, as my husband has dubbed my dentist, my endodontis*, my periodontist, all of the guys at the mechanics shop, and any other male who comes in contact with me on a semi-regular basis.
I’m not ready to go public with all of the details save to note these two details:
- Do Not Want
- My past health and lifestyle now make more sense
I will live; and, according to WebMD and MayoClinic.com I shall live well, if only slightly differently.
But here’s the deal: my mother had a similar diagnosis but not til she was 70-ish; I’m now 47 and have just been diagnosed. I would like to have my daughters tested so that when they bump up against energy issues and wonder why they can’t seem to manage what all their friends can manage they don’t turn 47 or 70 and say “Doh! That makes sense.” But as soon as I think this, I think “no, I can’t saddle them with a pre-existing condition–what will that do to their insurability? And would my insurance even cover the tests for children who are not symptomatic except for the usual slothful sluggishness of adolescence (kids who have no energy to empty the dishwasher but can muster the strength to ride their bikes downtown for a crappacino).
Then all I can think is: Fix healthcare, dammit, so I don’t have to make these choices.
While I’d rather not give my children the “gift” of a condition that may or may not be hereditary but would last their lifetime, I wonder how much self esteem I would still retain if I’d known sooner that my fatigue is a biological flaw rather than one of character?
I think my anger of the last few days is pointed there more than at the fact that I have this issue–that I’ve had this issue for years and thought what was wrong with me was fixable if I just got up off the couch and DID something; which I sometimes could do. And other times I couldn’t. Sometimes I just didn’t.
The last few Saturdays I have gotten up, cracked open my computer, turned on HGTV and played games on Facebook. And not just for 30 minutes or so. i’m embarrassed to say how long I sat there like a big old bump on the couch. But that’s what I was. This a.m. I’ve read a bit of the blogs, some Forrest Church, done most of my laundry (note: MY laundry, not all the other laundry that accumulates in a house shared by 5 humans and 3 cats–one of which (cats) likes to pee on clothes left bunched up on the floor whether they (the clothes) are dirty or not), and lit a fire under my youngest’s behind to get her closet cleaned out (Holy Sa-moly is all I can say about that!) so we can paint her room sometime next week. While not a huge accomplishment, it is something compared to weekends of mostly non-movement.
If you are reading this as if I am wallowing in self pity, I assure you I am not. I have a lifestyle-threatening condition, not a life-threatening condition. I am cognizant enough to know the difference. And I am, in turns, mad at and grateful for the diagnosis–preliminary as it is. Not grateful that I have it, but grateful it has come to light. And I’m not going to like it much as I work on the changes I will need to adopt. This is okay. This is what we do, is it not? Change as your world does. Doesn’t mean we have to like it, right?
Enough about me. Fix healthcare, dammit.
*Though I haven’t seen much of him lately, can’t say that I miss him all that much, though he did have a nice way of fixing pain with more pain.