Intuition. You know that little voice that tells you you shouldn’t do that? Or the one that tells you something might be wrong? Sometimes its just a weird inkling in the pit of your stomach, that ‘gut’ feeling. I call it Godspeak. Yeah, I had all of that literally SCREAMING at me as if in all caps for months but, did I listen? Of course not. I decided (as many of us do) to remain completely oblivious or completely ignorant really as I look back on it now.
I didn’t know it at the time, but one of the main symptoms for non-Hodgkins lymphoma are night sweats; I’d been having them for months already. By January 2011, it had been at least six months with at least 3 nights out of the week resulting in me having to change my clothes in the middle of the night because I was sweating so profusely. I was about to celebrate my 30th birthday in February, so I attributed it to “getting old and my hormones going out of wack.” No one thought it could be anything more sinister and least of all, me. These things just don’t happen to me. Or so I thought.
By the end of January, I started to experience some pain in my left hip. It wasn’t very painful, just an annoying type of pain like when you pull a muscle trying to prove how flexible you are when you’re really not. As usual, I made up an excuse and thought it was because of the 10+ Zumba Fitness classes I was leading every week. “Just an overworked muscle. It’ll work itself out. Just gotta walk it off. Take a couple of Advils.” I thought of them ALL. When I started to have to lift my leg with my hands to enter and exit the car, I went to see a chiropractor. Why didn’t I go to the doctor and get an x-ray you ask? Do YOU know why you don’t visit the doctor and take over-the-counter medicine instead? Denial is human nature. I thought I was unstoppable and no doctor was gonna tell me any different. I could take care of myself.
Following my chiropractor’s orders, I stopped teaching for a few weeks. That second week of January would be the last time I got to do what I love best in the world for God knows how long and I didn’t even know it. By February, literally the week after my 30th birthday, the pain had yet to subside and only felt like it was getting worse. The Monday after my 80s-tastic birthday weekend bash, I finally went to see my family doctor. He immediately sent me for an x-ray and it came back, drum roll please……..completely NORMAL?? These guys are supposed to know more than us and it came back normal?! I was sent on my merry way with instructions to refrain from exercising only to come back to him a week later. “There’s no way there’s nothing wrong with my hip,” I told him. The pain was only getting worse with each passing day and I hadn’t done a thing to aggravate it. I was following my doctor’s orders. The urgency of the little voice in my head was growing and becoming frantic. The difference was I was finally listening but doctors weren’t.