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June 26, 2011

I have this problem. It’s embarrassing.

I throw up.

It’s a stress reaction, what they used to call nervous stomach and I can medicate it with Phenergan but I don’t like the side effects, and popping a pill after I’ve already lost my lunch seems pointless; usually, I just, well, you know, and that’s the end of it.

I’ve talked to my doctors about it, and there isn’t anything wrong with me that makes me throw up. The best guess is that I’ve spent so much time throwing up from pregnancy and pregnancy and chemotherapy and anesthesia that my nausea trigger is a hair trigger. Someone’s bad breath, a sudden loud noise, being awakened from a sound sleep, anything at all and *urp.*

Yesterday was one of those days, only it wasn’t just a one-shot deal. It was all day. We’d invited friends over, and I wasn’t about to cancel on them. Could I be a good hostess, skip dinner, and suddenly excuse myself every 40 minutes or so? I thought about it, thought about the time my friend found me hiding in the hallway of my kids’ school during an outdoor function, and sat with me, because she understood how I felt. I decided my friends would understand, and not care, and Chris, proving yet again that he is a saint, took over all the dinner preparation.

I greeted our guests at the door with the announcement, “I’m having a queasy kind of day, so y’all eat and I will lie on the couch and eavesdrop on the dinner conversation and randomly chime in.” And they laughed, and I did and we all had a great time.

Having had cancer limits my friendships to very cool and compassionate people. It’s not a bad thing.

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  1. Diane permalink

    I have a similar problem, but I don’t throw up, I just get horrible stomach pains and queasiness. Nothing wrong anyone can find. Chinese herbs help when I bother to go to my acupuncturist regularly and get stinky stuff to brew up, but mostly it’s just my “canary in the coal mine” letting me know my stress level is too high. I’ve done the “lie on the couch” thing at parties too. Blecch.

  2. Chris A-L permalink

    I love your writing!

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