My Wake Up Call

May of 2017, my body gave me a helluva wake-up call. Apparently it's been trying to get my attention for some time but I've been oblivious. All of those times I've stuffed my issues, my emotions, my needs because somebody else needed me or something came before me, - you know that story, right? All of those little signals of S.O.S. that I've missed were over. Time for something serious, something to really get my attention.

In May, I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. I got scolded by my doctor (and rightly so), I started changing what I ate, counting carbs, counting calories and learning what fuel my body needed. I started walking around the block. My goal was to get back to no diabetes in my system. Because then, I could slip back into my bad habits. Can you say denial?? Yes, I started losing weight but it was hard and such a hassle and I didn't want to and I was tired and ... [whine].

I went in for a CT scan because my doctor wanted to be sure my liver wasn't fatty. I did follow up with her after the scan and she gave me the news that my liver was ok but I had a mass on my kidney. I needed to see a specialist. My brain started to panic and most of the conversation was missed from that point on with one exception. Then she told me the worse case scenario was kidney cancer and didn't respond when I asked what the best case scenario was. Oh crap.

Two weeks went by before I got in to see the specialist. My panic level was off the charts by this point. When the doctor came in the room, he walked straight toward me and grabbed my hand. He said, "Hi Laura. I'm Jeff. You're going to be ok." I immediately believed him. It was a whirlwind from that point on...

The surgery was utterly terrifying! I have a bad habit of waking up during oral surgery; of throwing up upon waking from an operation I had 15+ years ago. And here I was going to have to do that again - holy hairballs, batman! It wasn't the surgery itself which scared me so much as the great blackness that didn't want to let me go and wake up. 

The anesthetist was amazing. He listened to my fears, really listened and assured me that the blackness wouldn't get me this time. He told me that he would knock me out when we were leaving to go to the OR room. I kept my terror at bay, waiting for that time. They were all working over me, trying to get everything ready, fussing here and there but I didn't worry. We weren't leaving the room yet so it was all good. I felt almost detached, almost calm, almost... strong. Almost... peaceful, like the other side was reaching out and it was... it was ok.

Bless he anesthetist! He put me out during the calm, before I had time to work up to a good terror. There was one moment and then the next in which I was waking up. No in-between, no blackness grabbing me and trying to keep me pulled under, no vague remembrances. Just... peace.

I found out later that my growth was cancerous. But I'm told that it was "contained" and removed. I trust that very smart doctor when he told me not to worry. I'll see him next week to tell me how my follow-up CT scan went. To say I'm scared is a bit of an understatement.

ETA: The cancer is still gone, my levels are where they should be. All is well. I'm good. In fact, you might say I'm very, very good.

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