The two of you who read this blog may be wondering where I’ve been the past few weeks. Maybe not. Probably not. It gives me some hope someone out there stops by to check in every now and again, though with everything else on the internet vying for our attention, the odds are slim. Still, this is my own small space which sat vacant for a time and I should at least explain why in an effort to begin remedying that.
A while back, I made a post about deodorant, in which I mentioned off-hand being a hypochondriac. The comment was made in jest, though it’s no less true, the fear of a headache being a brain-tumor something which comes in unannounced waves I wrestle with a handful of times throughout the year. In the past I’ve done a good enough job curbing my self-induced hysteria, not wanting to be on meds in an attempt to either prove I’m capable of taking care of myself or man enough to beat my own mind. I don’t much go for masculinity or gender roles as a whole, but I do think, deep down, a part of me would like to feel like a guy from time to time, and I think my rationalization of ignoring personal needs fed into that desire some (which further proves men can be idiots). Episodes began years apart. Bad episodes, I should clarify. I liken the hypochondria to a debate where a “normal” person has the logical side of the conversation winning – or being more forceful – than the fearful side, and I have those roles reversed to the point of shouting. Sometimes I could grab hold of the debate and reel the argument in to a manageable level, but the times I couldn’t (or can’t) is how I would define an episode, those – again – being somewhat spaced out. As time went on, they got more and more frequent, the latest of which I’m just getting over. Hence the absence.
About a month ago, I got a twitch in my left eye. Not the eye itself, but around the eye, in the corners and a bit of the lid. This jumped to my right eye. Same deal: corner, lid, beneath. Not the eye itself. They’d do their thing maybe a dozen or so times a day, twenty-thirty seconds each. Annoying, but not debilitating. Five days into this, I broke the cardinal rule of anxiety-prone people everywhere and checked the internet. This led me to being absolutely convinced I had either MS, ALS, Huntington’s, Parkinson’s, maybe a tumor, maybe kidney disease. You can bet absolutely I threw out the kidney-destroying deodorant and bought now natural stuff.
As a brief aside: the sweat-stains I’ve suffered from for years? Gone. Completely. Who’d have thought.
I would like to point out, I count it a victory I did not believe I had all six of those above nasties concurrently. Small favors. Went to urgent care after a week. Doc said stress, probably. Eyes do that sometimes. I bought it for a few hours. When it went on another week, I went to a second urgent care. In the meantime, I decided every-other twitch in my body was related. Spasms in the back. Lip. Calf. Hand. Cheek. Face cheek, not the other ones. Told the second doc about them, and told him I was pretty sure I had MS/ALS/Huntington’s/Parkinson’s/maybe-a-tumor/maybe-kidney-disease. He said “Yeah, you could.” Gave me muscle relaxers and said if it didn’t go away to contact a neurosurgeon. I’m sure you can figure how the following week played out.
Doc 2 was pretty dismissive when I mentioned the hypochondria thing. Should have been my first red flag, but I don’t see color so well when I’m in a panic tornado. My wonderfully patient wife, who I know I do and have taxed, convinced me to go see my doctor, and basically wrote Doc 2 off as someone I should ignore. So I did. After about three-and-a-half weeks I saw my doctor, still pretty sure I had a terminal cocktail, who – mostly – frowned at me, smiled a bit, and just shook her head. But, in doing so, I finally buckled. Asked for meds to dam the debate. She gave them. Happily. I’m still twitching, a month on, but I don’t care and it’s wonderful. She thinks I have benign-something-or-other, and that’s fine, and I don’t care. I’m happy. It’s an odd-odd feeling. While I’m not a fan of Paramore, they have a song called “For A Pessimist, I’m Pretty Optimistic” and, though I’ve never heard it, the title always struck me and seemed to be a good representation of how I saw myself. In hindsight, I’m beginning to realize I was just depressed. No real reason for it, and I never thought I was, and I never felt unhappy or bothered or whatever I should have felt when you think of depression, but I had it. Bad. It’s been a little over a week since I started taking medicine to quiet myself, and it’s been a really good week. A really great week.
So that’s where I was. Didn’t see the point of writing, and couldn’t much bring myself to write because I was dying. Still am, just not as quickly as I was before.