True Blood


Hypochondriac that I am, the five days since they took blood during my physical have been filled with worst-case scenarios.  I was certain I’d have cholesterol issues, with the high possibility that my blood stream had been replaced by a mixture of gravy and ranch dressing.  I highly doubted the HIV and syphilis checks would turn up anything, but you can never be too paranoid.  And there was the diabetic specter looming over everything.  Even a zombie virus and Captain Trips weren’t out of the question.  I kept checking my phone for a missed call, a message, but nothing.  Until this morning, when “Doctor” popped up on the caller ID and I braced myself for the sentence.

Which turned out to be a very short, “Your blood work came back normal.”

I sputtered out a surprised, “Really?” in the hopes of coaxing out some horrible detail she’d overlooked.  I waited for a “but” or an “except,” but none came.  I asked if I could get a copy of the report, certain that I’d look at it and find something to interpret as impending doom, but even with it in my hands hours later, the results denied me. Cholesterol was fine, like really fine, like right near the lower end of the acceptable range.  Number after number fell right in the middle of good and bad.  I didn’t even have the decency to have some kind of disease.  Yet another aspect of my health had been confirmed as normal, and I wasn’t quite sure how to process it.

There were a couple of things I could have gotten worked up over, but they were already known quantities.  I knew my creatinine was high; that was what had started my whole journey through nephrology four years ago.  My sodium was on the high end of normal, but that’s something I’ve been trying to work on.  No surprises.  Just good news.  I even used the results to calculate my risk of heart disease, and it worked out to 2%.  The average for my age group is 10%.  I’m getting downright healthy over here.

Yes, the usual provisos apply.  It’s a marathon, not a sprint, there are still goals to reach, this is a lifestyle change, not a diet, etc.  But I’m still going to allow myself a moment of triumph here.  Me 1, hypochondria 0.  I hope it doesn’t get mad at me.

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