No seriously, I am so thankful to know this reoccurring thing on my nose isn’t skin cancer. Thank God, it’s just another inflammation. I suppose a few years ago I thought that women at my age (almost ready to be a grandmother) needed to get regular screenings for breast and gynecological cancers, then we were good to go for another handful of years. Nope. All around me, similar aged friends and acquaintances are suffering (and even dying) from a myriad of inflictions, many due to years of self neglect or simply not noticing something was off and getting offer. There are loads of reasons we don’t take better care of ourselves, a lot having to do with money, also being overworked or maybe just the habit of putting everything and everyone else first. And then suddenly that horrid plot twist occurs where we moms are then too sick to do all those things we (mostly) love to do but that kept us away from taking care of ourselves in the first place.

A relentless sluggishness for nearly a year finally made me acknowledge that it’s not just my uniquely female bits that I need to be concerned about. Something was off. Thankfully a friend even commented on my lack of energy which is what really got me to take notice. While it was easy for a doctor to direct, “Eat more of this, eat less of that, do more exercise” of course it wasn’t so easy to just snatch up those new habits with so many other life responsibilities in place. It took me, well, most of my childbirthing years to get into the state I was in. I have now accepted that it will take me more than a handful of months and a few doctors’ appointments to get out!

I am working my way down an actual checklist of ails, potential ails, and lifestyle changes I want to address in order to optimize my health. I have recreated the adaptable checklist for my book How To Survive Homeschooling – A Selfcare Guide For Moms Who Lovingly Do Way Too Much. Skin cancer check up was on my list since it has occurred in my family. Working on other ails, it took me nearly five months to get that thing on my nose looked at. I know, I know. Firstly, even though I immediately knew it was weird when it showed up after a day without protection under the Marrakech sun, it went away and you know, out of sight out of mind. So I took care of some other things. Then it recurred. Then I started worry about it and how much it would cost to deal with it (assuming it was cancerous, of course). I don’t have medical coverage. Then I offhandedly mentioned it to my son and his worrying about it is what got me to finally track down a doctor and make an appointment.

Whew! It was only an inflammation because yes my skin is damaged but it’s not skin cancer and the doctor graciously gave me some tools and meds to aid in preventing skin cancer. Easy enough fixes and now I am onto my next big thing, which is a few weeks of the FODMAP elimination diet to get my IBS even better under control. Oh the joys of being middle-aged! But totally worth it if I want to continue to do all things I love to do, and hopefully even more.

“If you don’t take care of your body, where are you going to live?” Unknown