Okay, YouTube totally stood me up this time. I don’t get it. I thought I was doing everything right. I shower it with attention, promptly answer mail, backrubs now and then… I don’t deserve this. There must be a good reason. Should I try again or just sit back and wait? I don’t want to seem too eager, but playing hard-to-get is really not my style.
Anyway, back to the original programming. The part that comes after the Prologue…
This is maybe the most difficult post I’ve attempted so far. I’ve shared this already with a few of you and wasn’t going to talk about it here, but this new thing is going to be part of my life now and not talking about it isn’t going to make it go away.
If you recall, a few weeks ago I saw my doctor, concerned that I was getting short of breath and having headaches and a couple of other complaints that are so insignificant now that I can’t really remember what they were. I wasn’t quite prepared when he read me the results of the chest x-ray that I had taken. It seemed like a long time went by from the time he read it to himself before saying it out loud to me. And it could be my imagination but it seemed like he read it to me real fast and then kept going, as if it wasn’t terribly important. I don’t know him well enough to be sure, but I wonder if it was his way of trying not to alarm me too much. In the time I’ve been seeing him, one of the things I love about him is his straight-forward, no bullshit manner. I actually had thought I misheard him and asked him to please stop and go back and say that again.
“Chronic pulmonary emphysema,” is what he said. I got deaf right then. I couldn’t tell you the next few things he said to me if my life depended on it because all I could hear was a big booming voice in my head screaming, “Emphysema! You have emphysema. What the hell is emphysema and what am I going to do with it?” See, I had myself convinced that the breathing issues were due to anxiety and there’s a pill for that. And it seemed to be working. Or I had myself believing it, anyway.
You see, in my eyes, only old people get emphysema. Coal miners and overweight people who are too stupid to stop smoking and carry around those horrid, cumbersome oxygen tanks so they can fucking breathe. But they can’t so they hack and gasp and are not fun to be around.
No, I don’t personally know any of these people so I can only go on second-hand impressions. I just know that I don’t want to be like them. I know I should feel sorry for them but at this point I’m just angry and I hate that every other pack of cigarettes I’ve smoked in the past was emblazoned with the words “Smoking Causes Emphysema” and I thought for some fucking reason that it did not apply to me. It’s not like eating jalepeno peppers even though you know you’re going to get a pretty miserable case of heartburn. Or drinking that fourth glass of alcohol, knowing you’re going to have a pretty nice hangover in the morning. Nope, not like that at all.
So I don’t want to talk about this anymore right now. There is still a lot I need to research and talk to my doctor about. I have a pulmonary function test scheduled for Aug. 8th. Between now and then I imagine I’m going to feverishly plot to find a way to purge myself of this evil intruder. Yeah right. The scariest words I’ve read lately are “progressive,” “incurable,” and “irreversible.”
And get this. Now I have something in common with Amy Winehouse. She’s fucking 24 years old and recently diagnosed with emphysema. I’m gonna give her a call. Maybe we can do lunch.
(okay, so maybe that’s not true after all…)
I’ve decided that my mom and PD’s parents seriously don’t need to know about this, so I’d appreciate no one saying anything about it. I know that is a weird request, being that I’m telling the whole rest of the world. Still, and I’m not talking about it at work either, so… Just sayin’.