On Choice


I’m particularly fond of the saying “you always have a choice”.  And I’m really good at applying those words of wisdom in some parts of my life; in others, well, let’s just say I have some work to do.

Yesterday, I had to go down to the hospital to have my blood drawn for my endocrinologist, which in and of itself was no big deal.  There was no traffic on the drive down to the hospital, I got parked easily on the first floor of the parking garage (a minor miracle for downtown Toronto), there was a minimal wait in the blood lab, and the nurse who drew my blood could not have been lovelier or better at her job.  Truth be told, my search for a Star Wars Lego Advent Calendar that commenced after I was done at the blood lab was far more distasteful than having my blood drawn.

So what’s the problem?

Well, my issues start the minute the nurse tapes the gauze over the pinprick in my arm and sends me on my way . That’s when the hamsters in my head hop on their metaphorical wheels and start running.  For between that moment and the moment when I’m sitting in the chair in the endocrinologists’ office to get my results, my brain will literally process about a billion thoughts along the lines of “What if . . . . . . . .”

EVERY time I do this (I have to have these blood tests done every 3 months), I go through the SAME thing.  EVERY time, I enter into the process with the mindset that ” This time, it will be different.  This time I won’t let it get to me.  This time, it really will just be no big deal”.  And in fairness, I have gotten better . . . gone are the days of complete hysteria / panic . . . And in fact this time, I thought I would get through it this time with just a mild sense of unease or discomfort.

Thought being the operative word.

Because when I got into the gym yesterday afternoon, I (sub)consciously decided to do some pretty stupid things.  PR two lifts in one day after a 10 day vacation.  Yup.  That seems like a super idea.  Why???  Because I needed to (sub)consciously prove to myself that I was stronger than all of this.  Because I needed to (sub)consciously prove to myself how far I have come.  Because  I needed to (sub)consciously feel something other than butterflies in my stomach.  And when I was called out by the Coach for being stupid (my words, not his . . .exactly) . . . well, I didn’t exactly take it so well.  I (sub)consciously chose to give into my fear, and I wanted to stay in that place.

But, in the quiet of my yoga classes that followed the gym, and the stillness of this morning before anyone in the house was awake, I had time to think.

It may take a while before I can get through these tests without some level of anxiety.  But I DO have a choice in how I respond to those feelings of nervousness.  And so, between now, and 9:30 on December 2nd (well, 9:45 realistically, because my endocrinologist is never on time) when I get my results, I am going to CHOOSE to acknowledge how I feel, but then I am going to CHOOSE to let those feelings go; to stop the thought train in its tracks.  And maybe, just maybe, if I practice this enough, this process will get a whole lot more enjoyable.

Oh, and while we’re on the subject of choice, I am also going to choose some new recipes to make this weekend with the kids; hopefully posting at least one new nut-free, kid-approved snack later today/tomorrow!!


2 thoughts on “On Choice

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  1. Absolutely beaming with pride Nance! Thank you for taking the time to take a close look at this and reflect upon it. I TOTALLY get how you must feel when you go through this every six months, BUT (ahhhh… the proverbial but….), there is tremendous growth that comes from “taming the dragon” in these moments. 😀

    Love the Viktor Frankly quote too. Amazing man!


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