I am not sure how to start this post, as I am fearful of what I am going to have to reveal to you here. Sometimes I find that I am fearful of life, and fearful of death. The unexpected really scares the pee out of me.
Since Christmas I have been feeling the all too familiar feeling in my throat that I get when my Beret's Esophagus starts acting up. It's a tightness in my throat that makes it hard to swallow and (feels) like I can't breathe. I put feels in parenthesis because I can breathe, but it just feels like I can't. It feels like I have a huge rubber band around my neck, constricting my airways, and making it hard to function normally. To top that off, it always gives me terrible migraines, and really puts me in a bad mood.
Yesterday morning I woke up feeling worse than ever. So bad in fact, that I called my doctor. My GP, mind you. I have to tell you what the dumb receptionist said, because I can not for the life of me understand what this world is coming to, when it comes to our young adults today.
I told the receptionist what my problem was, and that I needed to make an appointment. She then asked me how to spell Beret's. Fine question, not many people have heard of the disorder. Then proceeded to ask me how to spell esophagus. I said to her, "you don't know how to spell esophagus?" It's phonetic. She said, "I'm sorry, I'm just a receptionist." I thought to myself, yes you are, but you work in a doctor's office, and the esophagus is part of the human body, therefore you should know how to spell this. Then she said, "Can you spell it for me?" I did, but the teacher in me so badly wanted to tell her to LOOK IT UP!
Well, the doctor was busy, and I was feeling really bad at this time, so I called a gastro clinic in town. I am not a patient there, and our insurance states we need a referral from a GP to get an appointment there. Of course they knew how to spell "esophagus" and told me to go to the ER. So Scott took me to the ER and we sat there for 6 hours. I told them exactly what my problem was and that I needed my esophagus dilated. Before too long, a RNP came in and told me they wanted to do a neck x-ray. I have had these before, and they always reveal nothing. Why? because the problem is in my esophagus (on the inside) not the outside. But I decided to be a cooperative patient, and did as I was told. As I knew it would, the x-ray came out normal. Then the RNP came in and swabbed my throat for Strep. I don't have Strep, I know I don't have it, as I have had it many times in my life, and know what that feels like. This was not it, I again told her it was my Beret's that was bothering me. I waited 3 more hours, but in the meantime Scott and I decided to watch some mindless TV since there was nothing else to do. I never watch the show, "YES DEAR", but we decided to watch it yesterday. The main character in the show kept blaming God for everything was going wrong in his life. He lost his job, his house had toxic mold, and then termites on top of that. He had to live with his BIL who he didn't like. Everything was going wrong for him, and he was angry at God for everything going wrong. Boy, didn't that sound familiar. That was exactly what I have been doing lately. Saying "what next, God", "what next?"
Blaming Him for everything that is going wrong in our lives right now. It looked so ridiculous on the TV, and I realized for the first time how ridiculous I have become doing the very same thing. That was definitely a wake up call.
So back to the ER visit. After we had been there for 6 hours (I am not exaggerating), we got there at 11 a.m. and left around 5 p.m. It was almost a total waste of time. I will tell you in a minute why I feel it was almost a total waste of time. At about 5 p.m. the RNP comes back in and tells me that they are going to send me home and set me up with an appointment with an ENT doctor. I had enough of them not listening to me. I said to her, "Why am I being referred to an ENT doctor when I need to see a Gastroentologist?" She said, "Well, you said that your throat hurt." I then replied, " I said that my throat hurt due to my Beret's Esophagus. I need to see a gastroentologist so he can do an endoscopy and open my throat up. Your throat closes when you have Beret's." Thoroughly embarrassed she left the room, and sent a nurse back in to tell me that I was scheduled with a gastro doctor this morning at 9:45 a.m. At 7 p.m. last night, after we were home, I turned my cell phone back on (it was off, due to the ER visit) and there was a message left at 4:45 from the gastro office saying that my appointment was moved to Monday at 1 p.m. We were still at the hospital at 4:45. Go figure...
I guess my biggest fear through all of this is that I have needed to go back to the gastro doctor for a recall endoscopy since July. I knew it, and I never went. I vaguely recall my last gastro doctor telling me a couple years ago after my last endoscopy that there was an area of concern on my esophagus, but it wasn't cancer, and that he would keep an eye on it. Well, since then our insurance has changed, and I was forced to find another gastro doctor, which I didn't until now. So, I am 6 months late for my gastro visit, and am a bit worried. My Beret's has never lasted this long before, nor has it ever been this bad before. The other thing that worries me is that the postcard I got from my old gastro doctor says that it was the 2nd notice he sent out regarding the recall endoscopy. Why does it say that, as I don't remember getting a postcard reminder before that. Was I supposed to see him at 1 year? I can't remember. I am sick with worry that I may have esophageal cancer, even though it is rare in Beret's cases. So you see, I am very scared.
Last night after we got home, I watched the special with Barbara Walters about Patrick Swayze's pancreatic cancer. Scott's dad died of the disease a year and a half ago. He was so upbeat about his condition, although I could see the same tell-tale signs Scott's dad had, that he was clearly dying. He was upbeat though, and refused to believe that his time was up.
I know that none of us know when our time will be up. I am hoping that I have plenty of time left to see my children grow up, and get to see my grandchildren, and great grandchildren. I have so much I want to do yet. I am not ready to leave this earth yet. I am scared that I waited too long, and for no good reason, other than I forgot about taking care of myself, because I was taking care of other people in my life.
All week I have been watching Oprah. I am not really an Oprah fan, because I feel she has some really screwed up views on Spirituality. I do like it when she has the medical doctors on, but her show yesterday, made me turn the channel. I will tell you more about that tomorrow.
Please pray for me, that I have not waited to long; that Scott finds a good job soon; and that nothing else breaks for quite awhile. Scott's truck is now in need of new brake line on his truck, which we cannot afford right now. It's always something, isn't it. But, I will no longer blame God for letting all these things happen. At least I learned something yesterday.