I had to travel to St. Paul, Minnesota for a week of meetings and ever since I was a young girl I had been fascinated with the Mary Tyler Moore show, so it only made sense that I had to go see the Mary Tyler Moore statue. (Or rather, it was Mary Richards, but for the sake of this post, I’m still going to refer to her as MTM.)
When I was in high school for some reason I didn’t want to live past 40. I know. That sounds awfully morbid, but it’s true. I don’t know if I had overheard my mother talking to someone about her aches and pains or if I overheard one of her friends doing the complaining, but I figured that life after 40 must all be downhill from there and I didn’t want to have anything to do with it.
Strangely, my life actually started to get interesting at 40. It was that year when I met my husband and after all those years of being single and pretty much thinking the marriage ship had passed me by (and I had come to terms with that), I found a wonderful man and we had a fun-filled, adventurous courtship for two years, after which we finally decided to get married.
But along came the aches and pains. And some of them were just plain mysterious.
While I was having the time of my life, traveling the world, rendezvousing with my then boyfriend (and later husband) during our long-distance courtship, I began to experience the slow metabolism.
The inflammation in my body.
The swelled hands.
The aches and pains.
Test after test and consultation after consultation with physicians, I was finally diagnosed with Lupus.
Crap. Not the disease I wanted to hear about. Just one year prior to my diagnosis, my best friend, Jessica Mears, died from complications of Lupus.
So, for about four years, I’d been treated for Lupus, only to find out recently from a second opinion that I don’t have Lupus. (Really? Are you kidding me?)
I’ve since fired the original rheumatologist who diagnosed me with Lupus and have begun seeing a new rheumatologist who seems very determined to find out the answers. We don’t have the answers yet, but he did tell me to start taking 1 baby aspirin each day.
Baby aspirin. Isn’t that what old people take?
Now I really feel old and can’t help but think about that time in high school when I was certain things were just going to get really, really bad after age 40. (sigh)