I’m a self-confessed hypochondriac so just a mention of a possibility of high sugar levels had me timing the frequency of my visits to the loo all weekend…
The new GP in town is a charming and intelligent woman but she clearly doesn’t know me. I subscribe to WebMD (which I vowed to give up this year but I’m not quite ready) and am always examining my moles/breasts/thyroid and anything else I can see for lumps and bumps that shouldn’t be there.
So when a recent visit to the GP had her mentioning that I should get my sugar levels checked as there is diabetes in my family, I spent the next five days in a whirlwind of panic. (It was a Friday as luck would have it, there are no pathology labs in the small town where I live, I could only have the blood test done on Monday, and I would only get the results after two days!)
You can’t really blame me in some respects: my dad is diabetic and so was my grandfather on my mom’s side so it does run in the family – and there is evidence that there is a genetic connection. (I should know – I’ve researched my family tree: not for exciting stories but for diseases that might be in the family genes!)
I rushed home to google the symptoms of diabetes: excessive thirst, frequent urination and unexplained weight loss or gain
I forget to drink any liquid when I’m working, haven’t lost a kilogram in the past year (despite walking a brisk 5kms most mornings) but the wee thing had me worried.
And of course nerves can cause one to wee even more
I spent the weekend drinking mugs of coffee and then timing how long it took my bladder to feel full. After one episode of three wees per one mug, I was freaking out, convinced that I would be injecting myself with insulin by the end of the week. And my fear of needles had me lying awake wondering how I would face the challenge.
Monday morning saw me at the lab bright and early with the required empty stomach and bladder. Did you know that even if you go without any liquid for 15 hours, you can still manage three wees by 9am the following morning? (I’m sure nerves played a big part).
Two days later and still no result
I jumped every time the phone rang and was trying my best to avoid sugar, reading the labels on everything I ate and snapping at everyone in my family.
Eventually I phoned my doctor (who had promised to call when the results came in).
“Oh yes, I have some results for you,” was her response.
Then why didn’t she phone me? I wondered
“And …?” I waited for the confirmation of a serious illness that would require drastic changes to my lifestyle.
“Your blood test came back completely normal.”
There’s a lesson in this and I’d better take note or I will cause myself to become seriously sick – and it will be my own fault.
Stop spending so much time worrying (in my case obsessing) about your imagined illnesses, that you miss out on enjoying your health and the simple joy of living.
Ninety per cent of the things we worry about don’t happen – and if they do, then we put on our big girl pants and deal with them.
Life is for the living and according to the Dalai Lama (and many other religous leaders I’ll bet), gratitude is the key to happiness – and good health!