I’ve written about struggling with depression and embracing menopause so it only makes sense that I now rant about my breasts. I was going to say boobs instead of breasts but I didn’t want to offend so I’m sticking with breasts.
I am angry with my breasts. Or maybe my age. Or maybe my anxiety. Quite possibly all three but probably just the latter.
I have spent the last week getting all worked up about a routine mammogram. Given that I’m adopted and have no family history, I have been getting my breasts flattened and compressed by a giant machine for the past ten years. And every single time I get irrationally, inconsolably panicked that they will find a lump, it will be cancer and I will die.
And I’m angry. Not because I might die. We all might die a thousand different deaths everyday. No, I’m angry because there are people dealing with diagnosed illnesses who are coping better than me. I’m angry because I get consumed with fear and anxiety every time I have some kind of medical test. It happens every year with my PAP test (sorry male readers just Google what you need to), mammograms and it will likely happen with my impending colonoscopy.
Really, I just want to get a grip. I want to look at all these invasive, icky tests as proactive, preventative check ups and not imagine the very worst EVERY SINGLE TIME. And I know I’m not alone. Most of the women I freak-out texted today could totally sympathize with my paranoid, over the top thoughts. Maybe some kind of PAP-mammogram-colonoscopy-freak-out-while- you-await-results support group is necessary. You know “PMCFOWYAR” for short.
This feels like one of those things we as women all experience but rarely say out loud. And we always feel less alone when we say things out loud. Granted this is coming from an over-sharer but there is strength in numbers and strength from being known – fears and all. “PMCFOWYAR” here we come!
The other kicker for me is that I dig Jesus so I should trust that God has got this – boobs and all! Breasts! Sorry, I meant breasts. The fact that I cannot hand over this fear and anxiety to God makes me more angry and frustrated with myself. Combine this with lack of sleep + illogical thoughts = total mess.
So I have decided to externally process all this here. And I’m chatting with God about all sorts of things including my breasts. I confess my brokenness. And my inability to go it alone. I need God. I need girlfriends to vent to and pray with. I need to acknowledge the worst but dwell in the best. I need to breathe. I need a glass of wine.
Today a good friend suggested that as I wait for my mammogram results that I focus on the the awaited and anticipated birth of Jesus. I’m still wrapping my head around this idea. It seems weird associating my anxiety with the birth of our Saviour but I’ll give it a shot after all she’s a pastor’s wife so I figure she knows a thing or two.
So I wait. And I will try to wait well.