Confession

You know how my whole schtick is to be as honest as possible no matter what? I haven’t been honest. With you, with myself.

Let’s back up a bit. Winter sucks for my anxiety disorder. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) gets sprinkled on top of my regular sundae of crazy. The fact that Syracuse has more overcast days annually than Seattle does not help.

This past week has been particularly unpleasant. I got a pretty brutal cold. Which led to not jogging for 4 days, the longest break I’ve taken since the jogging odyssey began last July. Z and I had a fight so ugly it necessitated an extra couples therapy appointment.

[Yes. Z and I fight. Our relationship is not perfect, nowhere near. We hurt each other, we disappoint each other. We calm down and try to figure out how to do better.]

I put my foot in my mouth epicly. C fell down and gave himself a bloody nose. T and C had an altercation so violent C’s nose was left bloody again. A manageable and forecasted snow storm hit us, but Syracuse has decided not to keep up with plowing this year so the boys unnecessarily missed a day of school because I couldn’t get my car off of our street. C fell out of bed AND HIT HIS NOSE AGAIN!

When a whole bunch of not great stuff happens, especially at the times my crazy is more…present the self loathing starts to take over. I feel worthless and useless, unfit as a mother and wife. I feel fat and ugly. I’m sure I disgust those around me, I certainly disgust myself. It is hard not to cry, hard to get out of bed, hard not to listen to the bitch who whispers, “I hate you, I hate you” on a nonstop loop in my head.

So the thing I haven’t been honest about has been festering in my mind. It has become the thing I think about constantly, turning it over and over in my head reminds me how weak and useless and stupid I actually am.

Just over a year ago I had a bad pap smear. It was scary, but I followed directions and had a colposcopy. That pretty much sucked. And it turned out I have HPV. The cool thing is the virus can clear itself so six months later when I had another pap I didn’t have HPV anymore.

In early December I got a call from my gynecologist reminding me about my annual visit that week. I panicked. And told the nice woman who called that I had a scheduling conflict, but I’d call back the following week.

I never called back.

Things aren’t going so well with me. I cannot deal with HPV coming back. Or another colposcopy. Or the thought of cervical cancer. I know I’m being stupid. I know I’m being irresponsible. But I can’t seem to force myself to make the phone call. I am really scared.

This week I came clean to Z. And now I’m coming clean to you. I mean, if you’ve been stupid about something you are scared of I get it. But I think you are strong enough to face it. You just need a little encouragement. I need a little encouragement as well. Monday is my day, I can feel it. I will call the doc on Monday. Pap smear, here I come.

my valentine

T made me a Valentine. It isn’t all bad around here.

sleepy boy C

This poor kid’s nose has been through the wringer this week.

Syracuse winter

Normal Syracuse morning.

HPV No More

Remember when I had an irregular pap smear which led to a colposcopy and biopsy? And then two weeks later I got the fancy call to tell me I did, indeed, have HPV?

That was a lot of fun.

I kid, I kid. I handled it with the grace and maturity of an eleven year old girl who just got her period for the first time.

Six months after all this went down I was scheduled to have another pap smear. That’s standard procedure with an HPV diagnosis. I had it done in early May, right before we left for the trip down south. I was nervous, but it was totally ordinary. If you can call being cranked open and swabbed with an extra large mascara wand ordinary. At least there were no coffee grounds, no vinegar, no fancy mustard. I know, how boring!

The doc told me if the results were normal I wouldn’t hear from them. He also told me if the HPV was still in my system it was not a big deal. I was worried about being gone for a month and a half and he said if it was still an issue we could basically wait until fall for next steps and nothing bad would happen.

Hold on just a second. The results could be normal?

Yup. Seems like they are still figuring out a ton of stuff about this pesky virus, but when you have mild dysplasia the virus can clear on its own. It might come back in 6 months. Or in 10 years. Or in never. But it probably will come back. You got to keep your eye on it.

I never heard from the doctor. So I felt happy and hopeful although deep down I was sure they’d made a big mistake and just failed to call because the results were that it actually got worse. I kept wanting to write about it here, especially if the virus cleared because Yay! Happy good news post! And because if there is a good outcome maybe someone who reads this won’t be so scared when they find out they have HPV. But I didn’t want to write until I’d called the doc’s office and double checked that I’m in the clear. I couldn’t bring myself to call because I was so scared. For two months I couldn’t call.

Yesterday I tricked myself. I dialed the office before my brain could shout at me to stop. And to quote the nurse I spoke to, “Your pap was perfectly normal.” Hallelujah motherfuckers. Hallelujah.

Ladies. Get your pap smears. This was a really unpleasant experience, yes. But cliche or no, knowledge is power. I’m glad I know that HPV might be an issue for me moving forward. I’ll be more emotionally prepared and can inform my future doctors that I have a history. If we head down the cervical cancer road we’ll probably catch it really early.

Seriously, friends. Take care of yourselves and get a yearly exam at the lady doc. Don’t have insurance? I’m furious on your behalf. Go to Planned Parenthood, they have a sliding scale based on income. When I was broke and living in NYC without insurance it is where I went. Find out if there are free clinics in your area. Call your local doc and explain you don’t have insurance and ask if they will cut you a deal or recommend a low price option. I know all that is a pain in the ass. I know you shouldn’t have to do it. I know it is easy for me to say because I have insurance and don’t have to do a ridiculous dance to try and get myself to the doctor’s. I used to be there, though. And I might not have gotten regular physicals or gone to the dentist, but since I was 16 I haven’t skipped a year at the Gynecologist. This is your long term health we are talking about. Take care of yourself. Figure out a way to make your yearly exam happen.

And if you are a young woman get the vaccine! If you are a parent make sure both your daughters and sons get it as well. You better bet my boys will get theirs. Men transmit this virus. They can be part of the solution.

Ok, slouching off the soapbox for now.

workout

In other very crazy news I’m working out. Here is some very honest, very unfiltered before and after action.

flashdance

Channeling the 80’s. He’s my flashdance boy.

daddy love

Early morning Daddy love.

So You Have HPV….

Just got off the phone with the doc’s office. My biopsies are back and the verdict is chronic inflammation of the cervix with a side of very mild displasia. Evidently none of it is a big deal. I don’t even have to go back until May when I get another Pap smear. The inflammation could be anything and the very mild displasia means I do have HPV.

Listen, I know better than this, but it made me feel really embarrassed. Because I have no filter I said to the nice nurse, “Oh. So I have an STD.” She said, “Um…..yes.” I desperately wanted her to know I wasn’t a slut. I told her I haven’t had a new sexual partner in almost 15 years and then I started to give her an awkward and completely unnecessary blow by blow of my sexual history with an emphasis on how safe I was including HIV tests. The poor woman was very patient and kind and told me they know so little about HPV. A guy can be a carrier without having it. You can get it even if you use a condom. She said that I could have gotten in during my very first sexual encounter and it stayed dormant until now. They just don’t have answers.

So a couple of things. WAS I REALLY WORRIED A NURSE WOULD THINK I WAS A SLUT? What the fuck is wrong with me? Am I not a feminist? Because I will tell you what, ladies. I hear that you have HPV and I do not think you are a slut. I do not care if you like to have sex with lots of guys. If you make that choice it is your choice and you should do whatever the hell you want with your body and face no judgement from society, particularly no judgment different from what a man would face. I do not care if you don’t care for sex, or are a virgin, or have had very few sexual partners. It’s your business. You can do whatever the hell you want with yourself and that doesn’t change the fact that I’d love to go get a drink with you and shoot the shit.

Also, why am I embarrassed and ashamed by this? Do I feel embarrassment for my friends who have it? Do I think they should be ashamed? No. In fact, I’ve sincerely told a number of friends that it isn’t a big deal. Suddenly I have it and I’m a great big hairy hypocrite. So I’ve decided I’m not going to put up with myself today. This is not a big deal and I’m not going to wallow or feel like I’ve done something wrong in my past. I’m comfortable with every choice I’ve made because they all have combined to bring me to right now. I have a marriage I’m proud of and I’ve fought damn hard for. I have two adorable, frustrating, perfect for me boys. I’ve battled back from severe mental illness. I’m (dare I say it?) happy. So I have HPV. Who gives a shit?

A bunch of my girlfriends have told me they have HPV so it stands to reason a bunch more also have it and have decided to keep that info private. Your body, your info, you get to tell or not tell who you want-I’m not saying you should shout it from the rooftops like I am. (If a future possible employeer is reading this I promise that my HPV will not get in the way of my ability to perform my job! I’m a people pleaser! I will work very hard for you!) So here is my public servie announcement. You have HPV, friend? Hey, so do I! It is no big deal. You are lucky you were diagnosed because now you can work with your healthcare provider to stay healthy. Tell your young women friends to get vaccinated. If you have sons be sure they are vaccinated as well so they don’t become carriers. I’m so glad you found out you have it so you can be proactive about your health. And I look forward to the day when all Americans have health coverage so they can be just as protected as we are.

Hey! This is me! And I’ve got HPV. But that is just the tiniest part of who I am. I also just made some delicious granola (thanks for the recipe, A!) and I desperately need a hair cut. Oh, and I’m crazy.
Do you see the fear in C’s eyes?
Rocking hearing protection in Daddy’s shop. Safety first!

Better

Tomorrow I call my doc’s to find out the results from the biopsies of my cervix. And the funny thing is I’m not even nervous. The colposcopy looked normal–I’m inferring that if I do, in fact, have HPV it hasn’t developed much. So we’ve caught it before it’s a problem and long before it turns into cancer. We’ll be able to fix it. Or I don’t have it at all. Either way I’m fine.

It has been a week since I’ve had a chill pill. Mustard and coffee grounds are no longer exiting my vagina. My period has come and gone. I’m mostly fine. That first week after the procedure was very far from fine. It scares me that I can fall apart so completely. But at least there was a reason this time. At least it was finite. At least I was able to talk about it at therapy and come up with a new plan. Looks like we are going to give a version of cognitive behavioral therapy another spin. I tried that method of treatment years ago and it did nothing for me. Maybe this time will be different.

One of the myriad of shitty things about mental illness is all treatment is a crap shoot. A certain drug might not work for you and work perfectly for your best friend. But the worst part is a drug might work brilliantly for you and then 5 years later it might do nothing, or actually do harm to your mental state. I am willing to give cognitive behavioral therapy another spin because it is talk therapy-even if it doesn’t work it won’t make me worse.

We aren’t going to add a daily drug at this point. First of all I’m still nursing. My therapist and I are both uncomfortable starting something new while C is breastfeeding. But she has been bringing up SSRIs for over a year. I’ve been resistant. Zoloft made a huge difference for the better to my quality of life. But luvox and paxil intensified the anxiety to unbearable levels. SSRIs aren’t the only psychotropics I’ve tried. Abilify was the worst drug I’ve ever been on. I’ve been on a laundry list of others. I can’t even remember their names. I can’t remember so much from the time surrounding my breakdown. I hated the drugs then, but I hated everything. We were so desperate to get me better I became willing to try whatever they threw at me.

During our last session we were discussing my reluctance to consider a maintenance drug even though my anxiety has skyrocketed this year. She asked how I would feel about a daily drug if I had asthma. I told her I do have asthma. She asked what I take and I told her I take singulair every night. She asked how often I needed to use my inhaler. I told her hardly ever. And she just looked at me.

I got it. I get it. And I have a responsibility to be as well as I can for my family. There are options besides SSRIs. I’d like to start there. I don’t want to risk becoming more anxious while my job is caring for my sons. And I need to be honest-I don’t want to deal with the weight gain and complete loss of sex drive. That stuff matters. When I was suicidal and unable to function as a human it mattered way less-but I’m not anywhere near there now. For me the SSRI side effects are just too overwhelming.

Damn, this mental illness game is a pain in the ass. It’s work to get well, it’s work to stay well. I’m trying to remind myself that it will be so much more work if I just ignore it. Because I’m tempted. And I’m tired. It is so easy to let the feelings of worthlessness settle into my bones. Thank fucking god for my boys. I look at them and I know I can’t let myself believe I am worthless. They deserve so much more.

Sadly, the X Wing Fighter has been destroyed by friendly fire….
Playing in Daddy’s shop. A lot of “NO Charlie!” from T. But progress.
I want to be well for both of my handsome guys in this picture. The big one puts up with a lot. 

The Rules in Crazytown

We went to see Paula Poundstone perform last night. It was a hell of a lot of fun. She sort of riffs on what is going on with the audience for about 30% of it. It was a two hour show and over a half hour of it improved? And actually funny? Pretty damn impressive.

I’m glad we went, but I’m not going to lie. I wanted to jump out of my seat and run to the car so I could get home for most of the evening. I didn’t take a chill pill and the anxiety was bad. I’ve got all these subdermal cysts all over my body. They are incredibly sexy. During the show I was absentmindedly rolling one in my thigh around a bit and it sort of felt like a bruise. I realized that I have cancer. I have this realization with astonishing frequency. But that doesn’t change how scared it makes me.

Since last night I’ve been operating under the assumption that I have tumors all over my body. Lately I’ve been getting really full after eating a regular amount of dinner. The back of my throat feels like it is closing up and I get a little nauseous. These two things suddenly seemed to have a lot to do with each other and the cancer. And I’ve figured out that I don’t have HPV, but the cancer in the rest of my body has somehow caused the Pap smear to give wonky results. The really fucked up part is this all makes perfect sense to me. And I look at the boys and want to cry. I look at them and think I’m not going to see them grow up.

Tonight at dinner I casually mentioned to Z that I believe I have cancer. “Not cervical cancer, I know that would make sense. It’s the cysts again. They are tumors.”

Z, “Oh. That is really good to know.”
Me, “Yup.”……”This is a pretty big problem.”
Z, “I know. It is very serious. What do you think we should do? You know what? I think it is too late. I think you should just give up.”
Me, “Whatever.”

Later we were getting the boys ready for bed. Me, “So there is another thing you should be aware of. You know, health-wise. With me.”

Z, “Hmmm?”
Me, “I’m developing an infection on the biopsy sites from the colposcopy. When you come home tonight (he is at a uke show around the corner from our house right now) you should probably make sure I’m not passed out with a fever. If I am please get me to the hospital.”
Z, “Why? I think it will be too late to help.”
Me, “That is fucking ridiculous. If you get me to the hospital in time I think I’ll make it.”
Z, “No. I’m going to throw you in Meadowbrook Creek.”
Me, “WHAT? Why?”
Z, “If it looks like you were murdered the insurance payoff will be bigger. For the boys. I have to think of money for the boys.”
Me, “What insurance policy? We have health insurance but we are not nearly together enough to have life insurance. Unless you took out a great big policy on me secretly.”
Z, “Well….no.”
Me, “So don’t be an asshole and take me to the hospital so they can save my life!”
Z, “But they are just going to diagnose you with the cancer we talked about earlier. And it’s going to be a pain in the ass to arrange getting you there in the middle of the night. You know, with the boys.”
Me, “Call J and C! They will watch the boys! I don’t care that it is inconvenient! You need to save my life!”
Z, “MmmHmm….You do know that your pants are particularly crazy tonight, right?”
Me, “Yup. Probably a good idea for me to take a chill pill.”
Z, “No shit, Sherlock.”

This is how we deal with my crazy. I tell him what I’m thinking and he makes fun of me and I’m part of the joke as well and we can laugh at the stupidity of it all.  The is the way that we have decided to navigate my anxiety-treat it lightly, don’t take it seriously, don’t give it power, laugh a lot. And maybe, just maybe we’ll defuse it. Underneath all the bantering is me telling Z I’m scared. I’m not doing well. The anxiety is bad. It is really super bad. Underneath all that is Z telling me he is with me. He hears that I am having a hard time. But he will not put up with my doomsday flights of fancy. He needs to remind me that it’s not me, it’s the anxiety lying to me.

It took years to get to this place. And I’m so grateful. When I think something terrible is going to happen I feel like I’m keeping an awful secret. When I can share that secret with him he is able to bear part of it for me. It’s a big ask on my part. But he does it. And he makes me laugh at the same time.

I wish I wasn’t so scared right now. I read Goodnight Moon to C every night. One of my many rules is I need to read it perfectly, no stumbling over any words, nothing out of order. Tonight I accidentally skipped the “Goodnight Room” page and went right to “Goodnight Moon” I couldn’t believe I did something so stupid. As the word moon came out of my mouth I knew it was wrong. And I won’t have a chance to fix it, to get it right for another 24 hours. I’ve brought something bad onto myself by messing up. When I’m unwell I need to follow the rules even more perfectly. They are what keeps me safe.

So if something terrible happens before tomorrow night you know why. And I’m sorry. I’ll try to do better next time.

One more thing. I don’t think it is cute to be flip about cancer. But we aren’t being flip about cancer, rather the anxiety. That’s what at the root of all this. Anything we can do to attack it, undercut it, devalue it, weaken it we need to do it. If flippancy works, well hell. We’ve got to do it.

Me, “Thomas, where are your pants?” T, “They have pee in them!” 

My three boys working to get the Christmas lights up 

Our sweet little house looks so pretty dressed up for Christmas. Please ignore the pumpkins on the porch. I know, I know. 

I Need a Nap

This morning there was a story about the screenwriter of the movie Hoosiers on NPR. I listen to the radio when I shower and if that shower takes place in the 7 o’clock hour on Saturday morning the weekly sports show Only A Game is on. I know, it makes me sad, too. So they play a clip from the movie, which I’ve never seen. Which I don’t even know is a basketball movie. They play a clip where the coach is rallying the team by having them measure the height of the basketball net and reminding them it is the same height as the net back home. And I am just getting out of the shower dripping wet, standing there frozen listening to Gene Hackman inspire a group of high school boys and I am weeping. Um, did I mention that I don’t give a shit about basketball and I’ve never seen the movie? I am very tired. And perhaps a wee bit emotional. Which means I’ve found myself crying a lot over the last few days.

There was a sweet spot from my late teens through becoming a parent when I slept easily and well. No longer scared at night, no pesky kids to wake me. All that went out the window when T was born. Now I am scared again at night, scared to be responsible for another human, scared to realize I’m the grown up, scared something terrible is going to happen because we have so much to lose now. And the bleeding. I’m scared of bleeding. Since the Colposcopy I have been a wreck. I’m not getting a hell of a lot of sleep. Instead I lie in bed, my stomach clenched tight, cold sweat on my forehead and I wait for that terrible feeling of a huge blood clot slowly snaking its way out of me. The dark feels menacing. The fear is suffocating. And I am exhausted but I can’t relax enough to sleep. Instead I’m up and running to the bathroom just to check there is no blood over and over and over.

For the record there haven’t been any blood clots. I think I’m healing as I should be, the only things exiting my body are those magnificent coffee grounds at this point. And that should wind down by about Wednesday. Just in time for my period. I’m worried I’ll be too scared to get a good night’s sleep for another week and a half. I just want this whole business to be over.

When my high school friend visited the night of Halloween she wondered out loud if my crazy was really that bad. Z looked at her and laughed a little wildly. When he calmed down he assured her it was. The thing is I’ve always been able to act normal. Even during the worst of the breakdown if I managed to show up in public I’d put what another friend called my “game face” on. It didn’t end up doing me any favors. I just seemed like a giant flake. I still don’t leave the house if I can’t pretend that I am perfectly fine. I can confess the worst parts of myself on the internet, but I can’t bear to be anything other than composed in public. It’s ridiculous and hypocritical and frankly incredibly exhausting.

Instead I have days like yesterday. Where I drop T at school, go to the bank and run some errands, go to Target, pick T up, take T back to school for a party to celebrate the school’s renovation. All that time in public I am normal as normal can be. I seem relaxed and calm. Inside I’m just trying to get through it all without having explosive diarrhea or embarrassing myself in some other way. And then at night, when I feel completely alone, it all goes to hell. Anxiety disorders are stupid. Also, I need a nap.

The little guy can’t wait to go to school with his big brother next year.
Seriously? Again? And with a new roll?
Someone loves Daddy kisses. 

So You’re Having a Colposcopy!

Let’s get the results, such as they are, out of the way first. The Colposcopy was completely normal, so my doc did 3 biopsies in order to have a better sense of what is going on. I’ll get the results in two weeks. There are two possible scenarios here: 1. I have HPV. I’ve never had a bad Pap before. I pointed out to him that I haven’t had a new sexual partner in almost 15 years. And I trust that my partner has been faithful. My doc is a pip. He told me he agreed-couldn’t imagine anyone cheating on someone as adorable as me. He also said the virus can hang out and not be detected in Pap smears for that long. Which is why they are moving towards a model where they do yearly HVP tests and skip the Paps. 2. I don’t have HPV and there was a mix up with the labs. The doc felt it could go either way, particularly after the Colposcopy showed nothing unusual.

More information in two weeks. Being the visual was clean I’m not that worried. Even if I do have HPV it is probably very manageable at this point.

Ok, things are going to get super graphic. Please just skip the rest if you don’t want unsexy talk of vaginas, biopsies, blood, and fancy mustard. Yes, the mustard part will make sense in a bit. Now here is where I offer advice to other ladies who need to go through this procedure:

1. Bring a friend or family member who will help you stay calm. Hey asshole! That does not mean a 15 month old kid! And C-you were a total trooper. I owe you.

2. Do you have a prescription for a benzo? If the answer is yes, you are pretty much guaranteed to be the kind of person who is going to flip out during or directly after this procedure. Save yourself some major grief and doen’t wait until you are a sobbing mess in your car and miles away from the pills in your bathroom cabinet before realizing you should probably take one.

3. Do you have something important to do after the procedure? Unless you want to miss, say, your second to last class of the semester-the one that had the most interesteing reading so you are pretty sure the seminar was amazing (although the rest of the class was probably thrilled they got a chance to talk for a change). The one where they make CHEESE during the practical. Cheese, people! Missed the chance to make cheese! Yes, I know making ricotta is easy, but I only know the theory, I haven’t actually tried it! Sorry, got carried away there. So yes, unless you want to miss your important thing go ahead and reschedule. If you have an anxiety disorder you will be a mess for the rest of the day.

4. The advice my sister-in-law gave me to take ibuprofen before the procedure was sound. Do this.  The Colposcopy takes a long time. The biopsies take a long time. There is a lot of poking and prodding. It hurts. Even if you like and trust your doc (and I do), even if you don’t have an anxiety disorder, it is incredibly stressful and by the end you really just want all foreign objects out of your vagina. Which is good because you can’t put anything in your vagina for two weeks. Sadly, this is non-negotiable. If I knew this in advance I would have gently prepped Z, rather than blurting it out on the phone as I wept hysterically in the car. I’m thinking that call was not the highlight of his day.

5. If you are getting biopsied you are going to bleed. The doc might even remark you are bleeding a lot. Which will send you in a tailspin if you have a frightening history of ladypart bleeding. I think I would have been able to rally if it weren’t for the bleeding part. But here I am almost 24 hours later, still running to the bathroom every 12 seconds to make sure I’m not passing huge clots. My heart has taken up residence in my throat. I’m in what feels like a never ending anxiety attack.

6. But it isn’t regular bleeding. Which you’d think would make for a pleasant change, instead it is even more disgusting! We ladies are used to blood coming from our vaginas. It’s been happening to me for about 25 years. After the biopsies I spied the nurse holding a glass jar of what looked like fancy mustard. Vinegar is used for the Colposcopy (it makes the bad cells turn white) so I enquired if we were making salad dressing. I kid, I kid. I just asked what the hell was going on. So the mustard stuff is packed onto your cervix because it stops the bleeding. I’m not sure on the magic/science here (feel free to correct in the comments) but I think it makes blood clots form on the biopsy sites. Blood clots are not my friend, so this made me very nervous. Doc assured me I was not getting out of there until the bleeding stopped. And he told me that was part of the whole nothing-in-the-vagina-for-two-weeks deal. Dislodging those blood clots would be really bad news. Also! The mustard stuff will continue to come out of you for about a week! Also! Parts of it will morph into what looks like coffee grounds! Yes! Mustard and coffee grounds coming out of your vagina for a week!

7. For the rest of the day you will hobble around, very very sore in your special area, the mustard stuff hardening right outside the entrance to ladytown and sort of create a pulling, burning, painful sensation. But you can’t do anything about it! Removing it might dislodge the inside stuff, and that is trouble! Also, gobs of mustard will fall out of you, each time convincing you a hemorrhage is beginning (Ok, that’s just me. But I’ve had a hemorrhage so it’s legit I’d feel that way).

Alright, ladies. Yesterday was the opposite of fun. But I hope some gal who is going in for the procedure does stumble upon this someday. Knowing exactly what is going to go down might make things easier for that person. I’m not writing this to scare you, Person-who-needs-a-Colposcopy-in-the-future. Rather, I’m trying to help educate you. You need to do this. It is important. Just know it is going to hurt a bit. Cancel plans for the rest of the day. Take some pain relief. Bring the maxi pad of your choice so you aren’t stuck with the bricks they give you at the doc’s office. Be prepared.

And I’m going to get serious for a minute. It sucked. It sucked balls. But I am so happy I had this procedure done. I feel so lucky to have health insurance. To have excellent medical care and a rockin’ doc who will find out what is going on and help me to fix it. Did I have one unpleasant day? Yes. Who fucking cares in the long run? I’ll also have help and answers and I will not wake up 15 years from now with an endstage cervical cancer that is going to kill me. How extraordinary is that? Don’t you wish every woman was afforded the same opportunity?

And a huge thanks to my friends who have been through this and showered me with awesome, helpful advice. I’m lucky to have all of you in my life.

The good part of missing class is I got to see this. Each Wednesday night this semester Z and the boys have been getting together with our friend and her two boys. She is married to the Professor of my class. I’ll tell you what, it is awesome to see your kid playing super involved games with a friend. They really do a good job and seem to have a lot of fun together. 

Of course, Z wanted in on the action. 

Cheesecake shot this morning.