I'm having my tonsils out tomorrow.
After a series of tests on the swollen lymph node in my neck, with a diagnosis of 'abnormal cells' in both my left tonsil and in the lymph node, my doctor decided to take my tonsils out. This will allow him to do more tests on the tissue, to hopefully determine what is going on.
The surgery is outpatient, and if all goes well I will be home tomorrow evening. I'm told to expect a recuperation period of one to two weeks.
As I've written about recently, this all hits on ground zero of my lifelong fear of doctors, health problems, and surgery (which I've never even had before, I've just always been afraid of it). I've been dealing with this for more than a month now, and although I'm scared about tomorrow, I'm ready.
I spent today getting everything organized: all the laundry is clean, folded and put away. The fridge is stocked with a week's worth of food. I've lined up help for the kids - play dates and rides to their activities for a full week. The house is sparkling clean. Keeping busy is good; it helps me keep my mind in the moment.
I've spent a lot of time praying, trying to keep my heart and mind open, to hear and feel the messages this challenge is meant to teach me. All my life I've suffered with this irrational fear, and pushing through this is stretching me in uncomfortable ways. Practicing acceptance and living in the moment is so much easier when life is sailing along predictably. The past month has forced me to sit with fear, to find gratitude in the smallest things, to pull my mind into the present moment when it threatens to spin into that place of awfulizing, of certainty that the worst will happen.
As difficult as it has been, I can feel myself growing. I understand more now about how powerful the desire to control the uncontrollable really is, how my mind likes to travel down the familiar ruts of anxiety and fear. I'm digging new paths, and it's hard. It's worth it, though, and I believe that I'll emerge on the other side of this tough patch having learned important things about myself, my faith, my ability to let go, to trust and to ask for help.
I'm noticing the small everyday gifts life gives, feeling my heart swell with joy over the simplest things. I'm hugging my kids a little tighter. I'm embracing the love and support from my family and friends with overwhelming gratitude. I am blessed in so many ways.
I am doing my best to stay in the moment. When my mind drifts towards fear, towards worry about the test results, towards pain, suffering and uncertainty, I throw up my hands and surrender. What happens next is not up to me. All anxiety and fear do is pollute the moments I have right here, right now.
Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me, offered words of comfort, support and prayer. I appreciate it more than words can say.
I'm off to wallow in my family. Moment by moment.