We go to our family doctor, in part, because she's super laid back. When the kids are coughing and sniffling she's not all, "Let's start testing for pneumonia" she's "Eh, they do that. Keep an eye on it." Ninety-nine point nine percent of the time, it really isn't a big deal and I love that she stays chill.
The only problem? Knowing how calm and cool she usually is, when she does look worried or order tests and things, it freaks me out, sometimes without good cause.
Last week I was having some weird headaches with neck pain and fuzzy vision. I thought that maybe I had just tweaked my neck, but the vision thing seemed like it was worth a check-up. If you've never experienced it, I'll vouch--it's super-duper scary when you all of a sudden can't see correctly.
Our doctor agreed that it might be a chiropractic issue and suggested I go for an adjustment, but then told me I should have a head CT, too, just in case.
It wasn't until I had scheduled the appointment and gotten out to my car that my brain started whirring in full, high-speed, panic-mode,
"Wait, just in case what? Does she think I have a brain tumor? What else could it possibly be? A brain tumor, really? Shit, shit, shit.
I barked at the Kid to hurry up, like, ten times this morning. All he's going to remember about me is that I was always yelling at him. And I've got to write a note for Sweet Husband to give Little Miss after she has her first baby. And I need to remind Nice Friend that she off-hand promised one time that if I died young she would help Sweet Husband pick out birthday and Christmas gifts until the kids are grown-up. Does this mean Sweet Husband and I can charge up the credit card for a spontaneous trip to Rome? Would that be totally irresponsible? But I should probably write a note to Sweet Husband's future new wife first. 'Please take good care of them all. I'll be watching you!'
Or is that creepy? Yeah that's probably creepy. Maybe just their birth stories? I can tell her those without being a bitchy, first-wife ghost, right? Right? Or maybe we could just do that thing where I pick the new wife from my deathbed? But I suck at matchmaking....
Crap. This is bad, bad news.
I should go get a cookie. If I'm dying I don't need to worry about my health anymore. Yeah, I'll drive through Starbucks on the way to work and get a cookie. That's what I'll do."
In retrospect, my initial thoughts read like a catalog of my faults. Impatience? Check! Control-freak? Check! Stress-eater? Check!
But, rather then dwelling on the bad, let's get to the good news--I do not have a brain tumor.
Dr. Google was my friend in this instance, as the first thing on the search list when I looked up my symptoms was a message board for hypochondriacs, which reassured me that less than 1% of people actually have brain tumors.
And then my actual CT scan was normal, so there was that.
The final word as to the cause of my weird head/shoulder pain is still a mystery, but I really think that this is just one more way that bearing children has taken a toll on my body. I had a similar thing happen--with just my wrist, fortunately--about six months after the Kid was born. It hurt something terrible for two or three weeks, then it just sort of faded away.
I feel like someone should tell pregnant ladies about this possible side effect, though. Like, everyone wants to talk about the fact that you'll always have extra skin around your belly. There are whole photo sites devoted to "This Is What Real Post-Baby Bodies Look Like" but no one wants to tell you what they feel like.
Because, while the skin flap isn't my favorite body feature, relatively speaking it's a non-issue. But nobody tells you your immune system might end up weaker. Nobody tells you that your joints and ligaments could take a few years (yes, years) to settle back in to their not-so-loose pre-pregnancy state. Nobody tells you that, even when everything works perfectly and your actual birth makes you feel like a rockstar from Mars, your body gets a little more tired every time and that can manifest itself in weird aches and pains.
Why don't women tell other women about those parts?
Outside of the usual cosmetic-type stuff, did any of you have any strange post-childbirth symptoms that you care to share? Did they worry you? Or did you just soldier through?
This falling apart, but very happily not brain-cancerous mama would like to know.