This is the second post in a series.
Click here for the first one: The Stick Turned Pink
I have always been concerned about test results. In high school I hated sitting down to a test and scanning the questions with that sinking feeling of not recognizing much. I usually tried to avoid that situation (with the least effort possible).
In college my Type A really kicked in. I had excellent grades even in the classes that were just requirements. Those pesky classes still affected my GPA which was high and I intended it to stay there.
I even pass my physicals with flying colors each year. I rate “Super-Preferred” on my life insurance because all my test results are so good. I like getting impressive results. When, I ask you, is an “impressive result” not a good thing?
When your doctor calls and says “Your results were (pause) “impressive,” in a tone that clearly indicates the delivery of bad news.
It was Dr. Lovely on the phone, calling me at 4:00 p.m., the end of the day. Just the day before her nurse had called to say my pregnancy test was negative and to begin the-pills-that-cause-a-period. I had an appointment in 2 weeks and I was to chart my bleeding and bring that chart with me. But more results had come in.
Now Dr. Lovely was in my ear saying things I could not even believe I was hearing.
Did she call the right number? Did the lab have a mix up?
Dr. Lovely said my test results were “impressive,” in that my hormone levels were clearly and by a large margin too high or too low (depending on the hormone). What this indicates is that I have been through menopause.
Excuse me, menopause?
“You are post-menopausal,” she said.
OK, stop. Wait. Stop. My mind was racing through the facts as I knew them:
I just turned 40 this year (in other words, I was still in my thirties only 8 months ago). I just had a baby. Only 4 months ago I was nursing an infant. I am having one more baby. Just one more. I am perfectly healthy. Enviable scores on every measure.
Every measure except this one.
Your periods will not resume, she said. It is premature menopause.
Wait. Menopause?? Is that even possible?
One more baby…?
And then tears came.
Next in the series: The Sucker Punch