October Challenge: Fear Factor
Maegs, Russe, and I were eating lunch at a little bake shop last weekend when we discovered a common fear: Bugs. Insects. Spiders. Creepy crawly things. A fear based on sad experience with creatures too disgusting to be allowed. We are not alone. Most women--and my youngest son--would fall right in line with us.
For me the deal was sealed years ago when I walked barefoot into my bedroom after a date. I was just about to plant my foot across the threshold when something told me to STOP. That something was very commanding. So I stopped. Then I reached out, flipped on the light, and looked under my foot where it was just poised to smash to the ground. Right beneath it was a sickeningly GINORMOID brown and hairy wolf spider the size of my palm. GAAAAAAH! I spent an hour and a half trying to vacuum the thing up. It jumped every time I got near it. I screamed. It probably crawled right back out of our Hoover later that night.
Yeah. I have good reason to fear spiders and their ilk.
However, there IS something worse than spiders for me. Worse than snakes. Worse than bats. Worse even than liver. And that thing is: mysterious inexplicable bodily events.
I HATE it when my physical self does some whacked-out medical thing and no one can figure out why. It gives me the gollywobbles. For instance, my eyes will randomly swell shut. No reason at all. A general allergy to the state where I live, apparently. And it takes a week to go away. During that time I feel and look like an alien. Ask my Gnomies. They've been with me for the Attack of the Alien Eyelids on several occasions.
Also, my blood vessels will randomly burst in my fingers and toes. This is probably not good. But no one knows why it happens. Once I was in dress rehearsals for Footloose, dancing away on stage, and the bottom of my foot totally exploded. Had to limp through the rest of the choreography and make it look like that's just how Ren's mom danced.
And childbirth? Baby, don't even get me started (no puns intended.) SO many funky bodily things happen in the course pregnancy and delivery, it ain't remotely funny. Like with my first kid I had to eat a plate of green pimento-stuffed olives every day. Every. Day. I hate green pimento-stuffed olives.
The real problem here is this: unexplained physical things freak me out. And my imagination runs wild and I assume body parts are going to start dropping off and dying from whatever is going on.
Kind of like two days ago. I've been dealing with an elbow injury for the past three weeks. Smashed the living shortcake out of my left funny-bone nerve (which has a name, but not one I know.) I hit that little canal between the radius and ulna so hard that electrical fire blasted down my forearm and out my fingertips for twenty solid minutes. It hasn't been the same since.
So today I see a specialist. But Wednesday night? After my kid's '80's-themed A- Capella concert? I got home and my whole left hand was blue. BLUE. Unmistakably. Freakishly. Thing was clearly not getting oxygen. And I couldn't figure out why. But the nerve in my arm was sending zings down to my hand and pain across my wrist, so I figured something dire was happening.
Long story short, it was 9:00 at night and my doctor's after hours clinic wouldn't see me because I am a new patient. So they told me to go to the Emergency Room. I did not want to go to the E.R. Too expensive. And what were they going to do? Tell me my hand was blue? I can do that. But I went. And they booked me in, hooked me up, and checked me out. Well, my hand anyway.
But they couldn't find anything wrong. Nothing. I learned more about my elbow injury but nothing about my blue hand. They even called my doctor at home. He had nada to say about it either. So the E.R. sent me home telling me I'd live and probably not lose the hand until after I'd seen my doctor today.
Well, I was panicking inside. What the heck could it be? Was my arm going to fall off? Was I going to be paralyzed? Was I going to die from Gangrene? Or rather, Ganblue?
My friends. I finally found the answer. I will not die. And I will, perhaps, work on not freaking out so much in the future. For at some point after my kidlets were in bed I looked down fondly at the new jeans I was wearing. New unwashed jeans. Jeans upon which my sweaty little pre-menopausal hands had been resting for an hour and a half during my son's A Capella concert.
I went to the kitchen sink. I applied soap and water. Five seconds later my skin was nice and pink again. The sink was blue. But my hand was back to normal.
If any of you tell anyone about this, our friendship is over.