Sunday, August 02, 2009

Five lost days

Way waaaay back in 1995, when Alanis Morrisette misunderstood the meaning of irony and we had to endure hearing her whining growls about what she did to her ex-boyfriend in the cinema blasted out of the speakers of every shop and pub in existence and my workmates thought that 'Ace Ventura: when nature calls' was an intensely witty cinematic experience, I was diagnosed with a 'macro-adenoma', also known as a Pituitary Prolactinoma (or 'Poo Poo' for short).

It wasn't cancerous, but was a jaffa-sized (as in the Australian 1.2cm diameter inedible chocolate balls used to throw at annoying people in the cinema, not a real orange) little planet with a mind of its own feeding off my mind. Luckily for me, the specialists soon stopped talking about yanking it out via my nose and were relieved to see that it shrunk itself to the size of a single grain of rice. My nostrils were no longer in danger of being raped and pillaged because the magic medical pills were received as gratefully by me as OJ Simpson with a not-guilty verdict. As my regular specialist put it, "Look, you'll never be normal (which explains my life thus far), but you're about as normal as it's ever going to get for you."

Despite this tantalisingly close proximity to normality, one of the specialties of this arse of an adenoma is its production of prolactin. As in breast milk. Yep, if we were living in 1709 instead of 2009 I could be making myself a rather handy living being the village wet nurse. Or idiot, but at least a few babies' lives might have been saved if my restless rack was restoring them. In a third parallel universe I could have been blind (prolactinomas make their presence felt by squashing up against the optic nerves as they grow in size) and insane; again, the similarities are eerie.

Back to today. The tumour may be rice-sized, but Poo Poo still makes an effort to keep the breast milk production up. So yes, I have the enviable capacity to be able to politely lean over and offer to whiten your cup of tea during a meeting if you need me to (although no-one, yet, has been brave enough to ask). All it would take would be a quick lift of the top, an armpit-fart type of motion and voila - white tea!

During karate classes we were often required to hold our closed fists in front of our faces and have our elbows pressed firmly up against our chests and my 'ol mammaries would leak mutinously in protest. Thank god the karate pajamas were white and the hall was hot because it just looked as though I was extremely sweaty.

Bountiful boobery aside, Poo Poo also sets itself up as the nerve centre for all things annoying (apart from Dancing with the Channel Seven Staff and heaters that die one month after the 12-month warranty expires, that is). Poo Poo will contact my old enemy, Mr Migraine, on a regular basis to come out of his lair and do his obscene version of Riverdance wearing barbed wire stilettos behind my eyeballs, or send Technicolour Yawn Man down into my stomach to force-fill up my sick bucket. If Poo Poo isn't on the ball, it will send someone less drastic but still bloody annoying to remind me of its existence: Acne Man, for example, or Sleepless S**t Stirrer.

I've had a migraine for the last five days. Every damn time it seems like the Malevolent Mr M has decided to go and try his staple gun practice behind someone else's right eyeball he rushes back to my head, laughing uproariously at my confusion and disappointment. He waits behind a corner or the kitchen door frame with one of those punching gloves on an extended arm, ready to thwack it forcefully into my face, thus causing me to stagger back to bed or the bathroom for more self pity and pain relief.

This evening finds me more than 85% percent certain that Mr M seems to have finally lost interest in me and is hopefully off torturing someone who could well do with being out of the public eye for five days. (Mr Sandilands, please answer the door willingly when Mr M knocks on your thick skull and takes residence inside the echoing, draughty halls of your head, okay?)

Love Chunks has endured tears, crankiness, wakefulness (due directly to my insomnia and overt turnings over and sheet-stealing), whining, an increase in sick bed time and having to shoulder our childcare, cooking and household responsibilities on his own, including cancelling a Saturday night dinner party that he'd spent most of the day preparing for. He took Friday off so that Sapphire made it to school in one piece and provide a watchful eye over me at home. I'd stupidly get out of bed and do something 'to help' like hang out the washing or make the bed and then Mr M would punch me down again, delaying the whole 'get better and get over it soon' process.

What I worry most about is how Sapphire sees me: am I a sick and grumpy Mum who spends a lot of time in bed and not with her? Someone who doesn't have the energy of other mums?

Earlier tonight, we sat on the lounge. She was crocheting a scarf for Grandma's birthday present, and I was struggling with my 'monkey see, monkey do' plain knitting of squares to be sewn together for homeless shelter rugs. I quietly said, "I guess it's a drag when I'm sick a lot and don't spend much time with you."

There was a pause as she concentrated on hooking the wool through.

"I'm sorry about that Sapphire." What else could I say, with the past five days being all about me in bed or slumped around the house, feeling sorry for myself?

She looked at my glum expression and patted my knee comfortingly, in exactly the same way that my mother does. "You're great fun when you're well and I love it even when we just sit here and talk. But don't worry Mum, Dad and I always find stuff to do. We eat chips or buy our lunch from Subway, go to school to throw some basketball goals and watch movies like 'Star Wars'. "

Fair enough. I'm feeling almost as grateful as my nostrils were way back in 1995.


Baino said...

Poor thing. I knew about the migraines but not the other little problem. Lot to cope with when you're feeling awful. As for Saphire, she probabl enjoys the time with dad . .Subway and basketball doesn't sound too bad! Hope you're well and truly feeling better.

Kath Lockett said...

Thanks Baino, I'm feeling as 'normal'as I'll ever feel this morning, thank Cocoa.

And Sapphire's already cast a critical eye over the lunch I've made her for school today and we've enjoyed several hugs....

louisalowry said...

Kath, I love your blog and your spot on 720ABC - we miss you when you're not around. Glad you're starting to feel better. Trust me, Sapphire will cope, mine do - "We'll look after you Mummy - let's count your wrinkles."!!!!!

franzy said...

My mum suffered migraines for most of my life, right up until I left home (hmmm ... nah, it's probably just a coincidence).
I never thought it was a drag or a downer. I just felt sorry when she 'had a headache'.
She's my MUM for crying out loud! She's awesome!

Tracey in Edinburgh seems to be having the same "am I a deficient mum" worries lately. Yes - while taking her sons to Spain and Scotland to see her perform in a Fringe Show.

Word Verification? "relib"
Good advife!

Kath Lockett said...

Thanks Louisa, you are clearly a lovely, gorgeous person with a heart of gold who is admired and revered by everyone she meets. The week I had off was the day I was with 'Dinky' the dingo and apart from my time with his owner, we were out of mobile range for most of the day.

Franzy, you're right. I guess no-one whips us harder than we do ourselves.

The Man at the Pub said...

Mr. Poo Poo sounds like a right little bastard. It’s amazing (and awful) that such a small thing can make things so crappy for you. Glad you're feeling better.

Re: Ms Morrissette's misunderstanding of irony, rain on your wedding day is not ironic. However, it would be ironic if you were marrying a meteorologist who predicted it would be fine.

River said...

They really are an understanding pair, love Chunks and Sapphire. And may I also say that you have no reason at all to be feeling guilty about being sick or not spending time with them. You don't purposely choose to have these migraines. It's just the random luck of the draw....
Subway meals aren't bad either, much better than Maccas, they've got those lovely fresh rolls and all that salad to choose from to fill them with. Yum. So you needn't feel guilty about not cooking.

Helen said...

You have a very special family!

I had migranes when I was a kid (from 9 to about 17) and not many days pass when I'm not incredibly grateful that I seem to have grown out of them - the worst ones anyway!

So I can say with authority, when Mr M hits there's absolutely nothing you can do besides lie in bed with the curtains closed, several pillows lightly piled on your head and feel totally awful!

eleanor bloom said...

Ah, Kath. My heart absolutely goes out to you. But pleeease, worry about yourself more and less about others. You'll be doing your lovely hubby and daughter a favour if you take care of you instead of worrying about them. You will also set Sapph a good example.

Big hug from me.
And a big 1990s doc martin bootful for Poo Poo and Mr M!

ThirdCat said...

Late to the party - sorry, very behind with blogs - but that sounds like a tough gig. Very tough.

Take care - xx