The Hypochondria Blog » August 2010

August 17, 2010

Going out of my Mind

I’m writing this for maybe no other reason than to get out all my neuroses onto paper (so to speak) and maybe that will allow me to relieve some of the insanity I’ve been torturing myself with.

I lost my father at the end of 2008 after a 3-year long battle with lymphoma. My sister and mother told me that his cancer was hereditary (his sister passed away from breast cancer in 1989). Since then I’ve felt like some sort of time bomb.

Over the last 2 years I’ve been getting more and more paranoid about my health. I’m 33 years old, overweight, a type 2 diabetic, and have high blood pressure. It’s all due to unhealthy eating habits and lack of exercise (I don’t smoke or drink). The insane part is that I know I need to get healthier and for a while, before my Dad passed away, I was on a good track. But I didn’t manage grieving well and it threw me into a tailspin, as I was already dealing with depression at the time. I will not make the excuse that I was “too sad to take care of myself”, but unfortunately, slobbing out is my most frequent avenue of escape.

Compounding the problem is the fact that any unusual symptom throws me into utter panic. Stripe on my nail? It’s got to be melanoma. Lump on my ribs? Liposarcoma. A little wheezy during non-cold season? Lung cancer. Panic attack? Heart attack. In each of the situations described I consulted my physician and he advised me I was fine and that I needed to stop “giving myself diseases”. But I don’t know how to stop panicking

More than anything I’m terrified of cancer. Mainly because it seems there’s no way to really protect yourself against it- even getting healthy doesn’t seem to be a guarantee. You could just GET IT and most of the time if you get it, that’s it. You’ll linger for years as you slowly wither in front of the people you love and all your dreams and the plans you had for your life just became meaningless.

It’s the latter part I think scares me the most. I have so much I want to do. I love my wife and want to have kids, raise a family with her, maybe make a difference while I’m here. The thought of leaving her behind, the thought of leaving her alone and the life we’ve shared together just becoming memories fills me with this echoing sadness that sometimes paralyzes me.

It’s extended beyond me now. Anytime someone close to me tells me they’re seeing a doctor or that they’re worried about something, I start to panic. Any time I get a phone call at an unusual hour I keep freaking out. My family has made it know that they don’t tell me some things now because I keep freaking out.

I don’t know how to stop being this way. I keep thinking one day I’ll just have an epiphany and just snap out of it. But I don’t think that’s realistic. I am going to start seeing a counselor but I don’t know how that’s going to help me.

Comments (2145)

I’m writing this for maybe no other reason than to get out all my neuroses onto paper (so to speak) and maybe that will allow me to relieve some of the insanity I’ve been torturing myself with.

I lost my father at the end of 2008 after a 3-year long battle with lymphoma. My sister and mother told me that his cancer was hereditary (his sister passed away from breast cancer in 1989). Since then I’ve felt like some sort of time bomb.

Over the last 2 years I’ve been getting more and more paranoid about my health. I’m 33 years old, overweight, a type 2 diabetic, and have high blood pressure. It’s all due to unhealthy eating habits and lack of exercise (I don’t smoke or drink). The insane part is that I know I need to get healthier and for a while, before my Dad passed away, I was on a good track. But I didn’t manage grieving well and it threw me into a tailspin, as I was already dealing with depression at the time. I will not make the excuse that I was “too sad to take care of myself”, but unfortunately, slobbing out is my most frequent avenue of escape.

Compounding the problem is the fact that any unusual symptom throws me into utter panic. Stripe on my nail? It’s got to be melanoma. Lump on my ribs? Liposarcoma. A little wheezy during non-cold season? Lung cancer. Panic attack? Heart attack. In each of the situations described I consulted my physician and he advised me I was fine and that I needed to stop “giving myself diseases”. But I don’t know how to stop panicking

More than anything I’m terrified of cancer. Mainly because it seems there’s no way to really protect yourself against it- even getting healthy doesn’t seem to be a guarantee. You could just GET IT and most of the time if you get it, that’s it. You’ll linger for years as you slowly wither in front of the people you love and all your dreams and the plans you had for your life just became meaningless.

It’s the latter part I think scares me the most. I have so much I want to do. I love my wife and want to have kids, raise a family with her, maybe make a difference while I’m here. The thought of leaving her behind, the thought of leaving her alone and the life we’ve shared together just becoming memories fills me with this echoing sadness that sometimes paralyzes me.

It’s extended beyond me now. Anytime someone close to me tells me they’re seeing a doctor or that they’re worried about something, I start to panic. Any time I get a phone call at an unusual hour I keep freaking out. My family has made it know that they don’t tell me some things now because I keep freaking out.

I don’t know how to stop being this way. I keep thinking one day I’ll just have an epiphany and just snap out of it. But I don’t think that’s realistic. I am going to start seeing a counselor but I don’t know how that’s going to help me.

Comments (0)


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