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Gnawing rat thoughts.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

I’ve been having a hard time coming up with what to blog lately. I realize that it is because I don’t want to blog what is eating away at the back of my little brain. But it is gnawing away back there, like a rat trying to escape a box.

Let me preface this with a few facts, before the ratty gnawy fear. Fact 1 – I look identical to my mother, not similar IDENTICAL. Both my dad and my gram have mistake pictures of her for me and vice versa. Fact 2 – I have been tested for rheumatoid arthritis and I have they RH factor (whatever that means). I don’t experience bi-lateral problems so I would say mine is inactive and/or tolerable (maybe I am in pain but just don’t notice? – could happen). Fact 3 – I think way too much.

Background, my mom’s rheumatoid arthritis severally flared between she turned 42 and 43. She also started experiencing migraines and other pains. She went from very healthy to having trouble holding her job. She was given several diagnoses and saw specialists all over Chicago. Just about a year later, the Rheumatologist found the lump. How this had not shown on all the tests she had is still beyond my understanding but the week after her 44rd birthday she was diagnosis with stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She never saw 45. They said she had most likely had the cancer for several years and it had gone un-diagnosed.

Guess who is turning 42 this month. Yepper yepper – Ms. Kitty herself! There is a part of me that keeps reminding myself I really am a different person from my mom. And there is the gnawing little rat that says I have about 30 months left. There is the part of me that says I’m healthier than I have been since I was a teen. And the rat reminds me that lymphoma doesn’t hurt or interfere until it’s too late.

I don’t usually scare easily, but I’m afraid of the rat. Afraid he is right, that he is not worry but a warning. There is nothing to do. What happens - happens. I have to live my life; I can’t worry about the rat. He’s just really bothering me right now.

I wonder if a peacock can eat a rat. Might be a solution? Never mind – that’s a whole other blog.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Kitty, I am sorry to hear this about your mom and I understand the fear, you have a valid reason for it. However just like many said you are not just her genes and you have lived your life different than she did so all that matters.
    I support the person that said are you sharing this with your doc so he can be proactive. It is a valid thing for him to look at and make sure he runs any test that might help make you more confident you are not facing this.
    A good example is my Mom and her Sister. Same parents same house but different ways they lived thier lives. My mom was a chain smoker since I was a small child and a heavy drinker and did not exercise or do anything for her health. She died from lung cancer and was very slick that last two years of her life. She died at 68 and her older sister has had very physical jobs all her life(a nurse) and she never smoked and gave up drinking in her forties. She ended up with breast cancer and survived it well and works out several days a week and stays more active then me and she loves life and she is now 78. So there are too many factors to make a one size fits all stamp that leaves you with the same health issue faced by your mom. I pray you find peace over this fear. I love this saying: When you let fear take over you you begin to question yourself and when that happens you cannot move forward, just go in circles. Hugs Susan
    1812 days ago
    Hi Hon,

    I completely understand. My Dad died aged 48 from a heart attack caused by diabetes complications.

    Guess who was diagnosed with diabetes at the age of 46 and spent last year with heart palpitations (real, as in measured on an ECG, not imaginary) and many other health issues.

    I truly was worried that I was a re-run of my father. But, I am still here and will be 50 in June, so history does not always repeat itself. Also, health care is a lot more advanced these days and, combined with diet, exercise and self-awareness, goes a long way towards mitigating the issues experienced by our parents and grand-parents.

    Much love, my Sparkfriend.

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1813 days ago
  • STHAX10
    I can relate! But live your life for today. What tomorrow brings, we cannot control. But we can control how we act towards the present. So enjoy it.

    Yeah, I look just like my mom too... especially when I was heavier (mom was always a full figured woman in my lifetime). I have also seen the effects of non-Hodgekins lymophoma thru another loved one. I am sorry for your loss...
    1814 days ago
    I say we catch the rat, tourture it, kill it, and bury it! This can be done in our minds!
    1814 days ago
    I'm sorry that your mom passed away. But you are right when you say you have to live your life I worry a lot too so I understand. But since you know what your mom died from you can have them test for it all the time. emoticon
    1814 days ago
    You art two totally different people so you can't compare yourself to her like that!
    Keep your chin up, and look toward your bright future!

    Big emoticon
    1814 days ago
    you are not your mom . my brother was very afraid 2 years ago when he was 52 cause my father died of lung cancer at 52 . of course nothing happened to him . did your mom train like you? was vegan? lost a lot of weight? tried to live her life following her heart? and even if she did, do you feel like your story is complete? if not, forget about mice and rats. fear is worse than most of bad things that could happen to us. I refuse living in fear .
    1814 days ago
    There sure is a lot of uncertainty you have to face. That there, in itself, shows just how strong of a woman you are for dealing with it the way you are. It's no wonder you have been feeling a bit off the past few weeks/month or so. But you know. That is the best thing possible. Have you talked with your personal Dr about your fears? Are they being proactive in checking you for these things? Blood work, scans, or whatever other tests they possibly have? I mean, there have been so many advances in medicine I am sure they have better detecting systems today than they did then.
    But regardless to all of this - even though you may be identical to your mother, you are not her. Just because something so sad happened to her does not give you a death's sentence. Will be sending you some good positive mojo and saying prayers for you too.

    1815 days ago
    Don't give that rat another moment of your time.

    There are so many what ifs in life--what if I lose my job, what if I get sick, what if I get run over by a bus. Truth is, the what ifs are part of our life's plan, and they make us better, stronger people. But every moment you spend worrying about the what ifs eats up the parts of your life on which you should be focusing--like laughing, playing with your dogs, running in the sunshine, spending time with your husband and son.

    All you can do is take care of the things you can control--your health, staying positive, enjoying life. Medicine has progressed so much since your mother found out she was sick. And one of the best treatments for Rheumatoid Arthritis is keeping your body moving, and you've already nailed that.

    Look at the joy and love on your dogs' faces. Focus on that and live like they do--one day at a time. Tell that rat it's time to go away!
    1815 days ago
    I understand the fear! I wish I could make it go away. Know that you are a strong, powerful woman! You take care of yourself and that matters!
    1815 days ago
    ok ... you only have 1/2 your mom's genes.... plus who knows really what her growing up years were really like and what might have impacted her later years....... You just live your life to the very best you can and to the fullest you can. what you can control do as for the rest only God knows the ending. LIVE FOR TODAY, you can not change the past, and tomorrow has not come yet, live in the moment. emoticon
    1815 days ago
    Oh Kitty....I so feel ya here.

    I, too, look a lot like my mom. I also kind of sound like her, too when I get mad. My cousin and I have a name for it...."I got all Shenski on them!" is a phrase commonly mentioned when my cousin and I talk about people that light that fuse. Her fuse ignites far more and has a brighter capacity than mine...but it's there.

    My mom and her degenerative bone syndrome have me worried out of my mine. My grandfather had it, plus some form of osteoporosis. My family really tried hard not to go to the doctor. Some succeed, which is why my mom's back x-ray looks like it does.

    I have to say...I understand where your coming from. I need to get back on the wagon....but this stuff with my mom has really thrown me off. I'm still working out and I'm watching what goes in my mouth, just not tracking it.

    Try not to stress about what you can't control (like I'm one to talk) and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

    Life is like a road. Some of it is a mud pit and some of it's paved...


    1815 days ago
    I can certainly understand how you are feeling but you are not your mother. Half of your genes are from your mom and the other half are from your dad. Not to mention that there are many other things that may be different.

    You should be grateful that you don't have any arthritis symptoms. If you are really that concerned about getting lymphoma then be sure to talk to your doctor about it.

    In the meantime, you can't live your life waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak. You aren't really living your life when let this fear constantly gnaw at you. Believe me when I say that I understand and that is something on your mind. I have a history of breast cancer on both sides of my family as well as ovarian cancer. I can't live life to the fullest though if I let these thoughts bother me all the time. Go out and enjoy life because we never really do know how long we have to live.

    emoticon emoticon
    1815 days ago
    I don't have anything to say differently from those who have commented already, but I can give you GIANT emoticon .
    1815 days ago
  • DARLY55
    Kitty, my friend. Live your life to the fullest, whatever is going to happen to us happens, and there isn't a darn thing we can do about it. I have heart disease in my family history, but no sign of it here. You are taking excellent care of yourself - just keep it up, all will work out as it should.
    So, call the pied piper and get rid of that nasty rat! Stress is the worst!
    emoticon emoticon

    1815 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/2/2013 9:53:26 PM
    Oh Kitty, I feel for you.! To lose your Mom @ such a young age and then to be getting close to that age when she first got sick .. . psychologically frightening!

    BUT basically, it doesn't mean it will happen to you the same way. My Mom has had breast cancer, RA and now Alzheimer's. THAT last one is the "rat" that gnaws @ the back of my brain! BUT I KNOW I'm taking the best care of myself that I can and that's about all there is to that. You are too!

    HUGS my dear. One day-at-a-time.
    1815 days ago
    Don't let yourself worry into getting sick. The mind can do strange things when we let it. You may have the RH factor, but that doesn't mean you have the disease.
    You lead a healthy lifestyle, and you stay active. I think it is a natural fact of life to worry ~ we all do. My Mom had many medical problems, and died at 70, as did her mother, but I try to remember that my Dad was healthy, and lived to 92, and his mother even older than that. I'm 65, and I do think about it, but I know I do lead a different lifestyle, and don't have all the medical problems.
    Don't worry Kitty. Take good care of yourself, eat right, stay active, have regular physicals, etc., and you will be fine. emoticon emoticon
    1815 days ago
    Wow, that is a lot on your plate. I can't imagine the stress of carrying around a fear like that. But the reality is, you are not your Mom. You live in different bodies, genetics or not, you are not destined to follow in her footsteps. Mind over matter in all things. You are healthy beyond the average person, in many ways. I think positive self love is in high order!!! The world is begining to bloom around us, I'm sure this living wonder, will perk your spirits, and kick the rat to the curb, where it belongs. Hugs!!!!! (BTW, I'm really sorry to hear that happened to your Mother, that must have been terrible for you. xoxo)
    1815 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/2/2013 7:24:46 PM
    Honey, pl.ease don't worry - you are focusing on your health more than people in the previous generation did. You are aware and you are paying attention to your body. Don't dwell on the fear of "what if" because it will only rob you of joy in your life now. Just because this happened before in family does not mean it has to happen to you. Not only that but there is the principle of attracting that which you dwell on and talk about... it is both a natural and spiritual principle. So instead focus on good ... don't dwell on the possibility of something negative happening... instead focus on all the good things you can do for yourself, and concentrate on the fact that you are building good health in your body and mind. As a Christian, I would also tell you to pray and trust God to keep you safe. :)
    1815 days ago
  • JUSTME29
    I understand your concerns - but you are two different people. You share heredity, but your environmental factors are different and that does make a difference.

    If you're not having arthritis symptoms, be grateful and keep moving as much as possible. If you truly are concerned about your family history of cancer, talk to your doctor about the possibility of getting checked periodically. It's definitely worth all the prevention you can muster.

    And lastly - take a breath. Working yourself up over what might happen will not help you feel better now. I know how hard it is not to worry (I'm a worrier too) but it won't help.
    1815 days ago
    1815 days ago
    You know, I've told everyone since I was 17 that I would die in my 40s. I just really thought I would as I've had heart problems, surgeries (8 or more, lost count) and am legally blind and deaf.

    On the year of 40, I went to Mexico and got Stem Cell and my cattaracts removed. Blind Batty did die, but a whole new me emerged. that's when I started running, going back to school, gardening etc.

    Now, does this mean I'm not going to die in my 40s? No, it COULD happen...but am I going to let it stop me from living today? No...and neither should you.

    Go, run, have fun, garden, take hubby on a date night, whatever it is...enjoy life like crazy!!!!

    1815 days ago
    Keep your chin up and don't dwell on it, dwelling wont solve anything. If you are really worried about it go get checked out periodically. My sister has a best friend who every oldest girl in the family has died of an aneurism at 25 so the girls all get checked every 6 months. Take precautions if this is something that bothers you but don't get out the calendar already and start marking down the months that is no way to live. Its your life live it to the fullest. emoticon
    1815 days ago
    Is you are trying to run from this rat, you wont see everything else that can happen in your life. You may have things happen in your future, but don't let that take away your life now. Nobody really knows how much time they have.
    1815 days ago
  • LWADE1963
    U are 2 diff people. It doesn't mean u will get the disease or die. I know lots of people who have died of cancer and their kids ate living a very healthy life. Get rid of those negative thoughts!
    1815 days ago
    I go through some of the same thoughts about inherited health problems. The good news is You are more aware, and have a kind of heads up.
    1815 days ago
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