On Hypochondria

It’s December 21st, 2012–the end of the Age, according to the Mayan Calendar.

You never thought the world was going to end, but if enough people think so, then certainly weird shit can happen.  It’s the power of thought–mind over matter.  Enough postulating about a certain thing, and it just might happen.

This is also termed: The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.

And that’s what you’re afraid of.

Noooo… no!  Not the end of the world!  This has to do with you.  You will pray for mental fortitude.  For peace of mind.

About three weeks ago, you (half) jokingly admitted to Marlene something that Katie brought to your attention: that you’ve become a hypochonriac.

Marlene simply said, “You must have a comfortable life.”

You laughed, realizing the implications.  Hypochondria = abnormal anxiety about one’s health.  In your adult life, you’ve always been very physically self-aware.   That comes with having underwent back surgery at the age of 21, and from having been seriously hospitalized and bed-ridden by an arbitrary septic arthritic infection in your right knee when you were 23.  Since then… well… every bump, every ache, every unexplained pain freaks you out.

Imagine waking up one morning to pick up your shoes only to feel searing how pain in your back, having felt right as rain just the day before.  Imagine walking to the bathroom only to feel a sudden and intense pain in one of your joints, and later nearly blacking out from septic shock.

You had twice taken your body for granted, and paid the price.  With such a history, you began your career in the health and wellness industry, and voraciously read everything there was to know about nutrition, lifestyle, and movement, in order to maximize your changes of dodging another bullet.

—Only to watch people around you drop like flies, and to meet strangers with the most complex and debilitating conditions you can imagine.  How many intakes have you had with potential clients, only to learn that he or she is recovering from a brain infection, chemotherapy, neuropathy, some kind of cardiac event!

You learned about these conditions, learned about their risk factors, whilst maximizing your health agenda.

Sadly, you are not immune to illness.

You boasted fine physical health to your Intended Egg Parents (all true), and spent a couple months idling, shooting yourself up full of hormones, and reading even more about ailments–autoimmune diseases, cancer, parasites, heart disease and sydrome X, vaccine-related illness…

Before you knew it, you were a hot mess.  Tennis elbow, shoulder impingement  chrondomalacia, patellar tenonitis, back pain, possible gum disease, strep throat, a chipped sensitive tooth, and.. and… and….

…little bumps on your cervix.

Whoa.

All at once, you were a not-so-joking hypochondriac.  That’s not to say you don’t have these little problems.  But you were sometimes crippled with anxiety about them.

What if you can’t hike?  What if it’s cancer?  What if you get a tooth ache?!

Fuck.fuck.fuck.fuck.fuck!!!

You must have a comfortable life.

After all, what normal person with shit to do, with less mental energy available to expend on worry, flips out about benign (and quite common) cysts?  Probably not that many.

You immediately wrote to your old fertility clinic doctor and asked her for some reassurance, and then scheduled yourself a medical exam that would cost you 80 euros.  Just for reassuring words… Just for a reassuring test!

You will pray for mental fortitude.  For PEACE OF MIND.  If you spend all of your time postulating illness, you will become ill.

“Be thankful you have a body,” Marlene said at the end of one of her yoga classes.

You scanned your body for aches and pains, felt none during relaxation, and thanked the universe that you have such a cooperative body.

Tonight, in the sweat lodge, you will pray for peace of mind, and you will thank the universe that your little bumps have conveniently and spontaneously disappeared.

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Categories: Illness, Self-Improvement, Struggles | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “On Hypochondria

  1. Lorelei Atevens

    You will get better fast!

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