Cheaper than therapy.

I love writing. I love scrapping, but more and more I’m beginning to believe that writing is my first and best creative outlet. So often when something is bugging me, I find that after I write about it, I’m ok. Must drive my email buds nuts, cuz I’m constantly pouring out my soul into and email, and then five seconds after I hit SEND, I’m fine.

So here goes some therapy.

I’m scared. Scared that what happened to my Dad will happen to me. It’s called Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM). In layman’s terms, the heart muscle thickens, making it hard to pump blood, putting excess stress on the muscle, or restricting blood flow. It can lead to an irregular heartbeat, or even – as in Dad’s case – sudden death.

I know much of what I’m feeling is still shock and grief over my father. It’s a lot to deal with. I almost feel as though I’ve been handed a death sentence. And I haven’t even been tested yet. Hindsight what it is though, I am about 95% certain I’ve got this. Those years in high school, best shape of my life, and still, I couldn’t get up and down the b-ball court more then twice without practically falling over. The dizzy spells, the shortness of breath just from taking the stairs, the random chest pain every now and then…. all symptoms pointing to HCM.

The HCM itself doesn’t scare me too much… There is no cure. Yet. This is one of those things, like bicornuate uterus, that is rare only because it is not looked for. Estimates say it is possible as many as 1 in 500 have this brand of heart problem. And scientists are looking for ways to nail down the specific genetic mutations that cause HCM. I know there are drug therapies, and surgeries, and ICDs which can all help prevent the worst symptom, sudden death, if the HCM is caught early enough. And although I am not looking forward to the fight I have on my hands with the military version of “Hillary-care” known as Tricare, I will fight it. Not just for myself, but for my babies, since this is inheirited, and one or more of them WILL have the disease.

What scares me most, is the very real possibility that I won’t be here to see my daughter walk down the aisle. That I won’t be around to bounce my grandkids on my knees. What will my kids remember when they look back and think of mom?

I go through moments of panic. Moments when I feel the need to gather them up in one big collective hug. Moments when I feel like this is my last moments with them, and I wonder how will I ever be able to teach them all that the will need to function in this world. Moments when I just want to lock the door and cry, so that they won’t see me break down. Moments when I feel the need to write out all the pain and fear. Moments when panic grips me, and I begin to fear for how DH and the kids would cope without me.

Then there are moments when I am fine. I can take a big breath, and realize that God is in control, of me and my children. Moments when I am at peace. Moments when all is okay.

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