Monday, February 18, 2008

Of course, it could be gas

Two of my colleagues and I are trying to get my title phrase here to catch on with the students. They have some of the dumbest things to say: "Kill yourself" is a popular one which infuriates me no end, among multiple other idiotic and meaningless phrases and sayings. I sound like a crotchety old woman (crotchety. should check the etymology of this word. is that how you spell etymology?), I know, but I have been sick for nearly three weeks, and you should know that I am a very, very pathetic sick person.

I'm not often sick and it's hard to get me to go lie down. It's like I'm seven and I think that I'm going to miss something if I go back to my bedroom for a nap. Don is forever attempting to get me to do the right thing, but alas, I am untrainable. I get bored. I get restless. I need Theraflu or Nyquil to make it happen, but I don't like that drugged up feeling during the day. And this makes me laugh-- the Samantha of 20 years ago lived for that drugged up feeling whenever she could find it.

Anyway, I'm sick and besides avoiding sleeping and drinking the amount of fluids I should drink (again, my husband is the reason I do anything right when it comes to this: brings me cups of hot tea; EmergenC fizzy vitamin C drink; Airborne drink, etc.), I usually, at some point, begin to suspect that I am dying.

You think I'm kidding?

Seriously, I started to develop this reaction to stress and illness about 4 years ago-- about the time that a friend of mine died from a blood clot to her lungs. She was a year or two younger than me, had been married one year, was a faculty member at Parson's in New York City, and generally seemed fine. Her husband had taken her to Disney World for their anniversary, she got up in the morning and was stretching her legs because they hurt, and next thing you know she had collapsed in the bathroom. The beautiful girl who always knew just the right color of lipstick to wear and had always had a perfect word of encouragement for me whenever she saw me was lying in a casket and it was ridiculous.

I've struggled with the fear of death ever since. It has loosened its grip over the last year or two, but it lurks. Before that, I was always afraid that I was pregnant. I'm either dying or pregnant. So extreme. Maybe it is, in fact, just gas.

When I was in middle school a friend of mine spent the night over-- hey, I should ask her if she remembers this... we teach together at Heritage now-- and I couldn't breathe. My parents took me to the hospital and they ran a bunch of tests on me all night and by the morning, the doctor-- barely suppressing a laugh-- concluded that I had a really bad case of gas. His prescription was to stop, um, keeping it in. Yeah.

But what do I have to fear of death, really? (not that gas will kill you, though some people's gas.. yikes) Oh my gosh, what is it about death? A friend of ours died on Saturday-- he had been struggling with cancer for the last couple of years while walking with his daughter through a pretty intense disease that wanted to basically melt all of her internal organs (this is a fairly chipper blog, huh?). And yesterday morning, it hit me like a ton of bricks: Rock knows all the answers now. He is standing in the presence of God. Right. This. Minute. Wow.

Anyway, I'm insane. Every commercial is about some form of cancer, so I think it's a sign. My lungs are tight and I sound like everyone I know right now-- congested, mucous-y-- but mine is some exotic form of Monkey Flu or something. Don has gone on a short trip with the youth group and I cried like a baby on his shoulder before he left. Pitiful.

Alright, so I'm back to the couch and a book that two of my students demanded that I read (some tear jerker about a kid with, of course, cancer) over the holiday. I have three gallons of hot tea, Halls cough drops and a heating pad (why? Not sure-- they just always seem to make you feel better). Of course, it could be gas. Either way, I think I'll make an appointment for the doctor.

Just to rule out Monkey Flu. Or gas.


blessedjourney said...

As I was reading your post, my phone rang and the caller ID said, "Don Swaney" (it was Bryan calling from West Virginia--he forgot his phone so he used Don's) It was so crazy because I had just read that you cried when Don left for the trip! As anxious as you are about being sick for so long, I think you should go to the Doctor! So what if he says you have gas---at least you'll have a diagnosis!!!! If you need anything, call me and I'll come running!! Love you

Samantha said...

You are so great!!!! Yeah, I was on the phone with Caroline yesterday and she talked me into going to the doctor-- it is not, in fact, Monkey Flu :) or gas...bronchitis. Yay for medicine that is already helping me to feel better!! Anyway, I think I always avoid the doctor because mine is in Decatur (I love him-- been with him since 14 years old) and I always forget that I have insurance now... All those years in YWAM turned me into a "what do we have in the cabinet that will kill any bacteria in my body?" kind of girl. Winkey Pratney has some intense home-made cures!

but if it had been gas, at least i'm the only one in the house!! :)

Frontera Girl said...

For as long as I've know you, you've been dying. It's one of the things I love about you.

Of course I only just now realized the double meaning of that statement above. I am so clever.