… but this. Thank God.
Regular readers of the blog are familiar with my medical memoir, My Right Eye, published in serial form on this bandwidth. After concluding the series, I was certain I’d exhausted the topic; I certainly hoped to give you a respite from reading about my health issues. But hoping doesn’t always get us what we want now, does it?
A week ago today, I had surgery to remove my gallbladder. I knew this was coming; an operation was scheduled for May 21. But my body wasn’t having any of that. Telling your body to wait while you finish doing something or other is rather like telling a baby that she can’t be born just yet because you’re right in the middle of getting a pedicure. Or telling your gallbladder to settle down and behave because you have an article about Sissy Spacek to write and you’re on deadline.
As a cancer survivor, any future health issue—especially one involving chronic pain and a need for surgery—raises the uncomfortable specter of whether or not the cancer has returned. I discussed this with the surgeon who was originally to have done my cholecystectomy. Her response was terrific, and it has become my new mantra:
When you hear hooves in the distance, expect to see a horse, not a zebra.
Gallbladder cancer is rare; but then so was the cyst in my right eye. Still, I repeated her axiom to myself each time I found myself growing worried about the possibilities. Which was often.
The story surrounding my surgery is worthy of its own blog post, and I’ll write about it another time, when I’m feeling stronger. But for now I just wanted to check in with all of you to say that my unexpected expected operation last Friday is the reason you haven’t heard from me in more than a week. And to shout from the blogosphere rooftop that today, my surgeon’s assistant was able to tell me that the result of my pathology report is good—my gallbladder was not cancerous.
The moral of this story? I think you know it already, but it feels good to write it down: Sometimes hoping does get us what we want. I was hoping for a pony, and I got one.
Have a great—and healthy—weekend.