I went in for a check-up. Folks used to do that all the time, now not so much. We go to the doctor when we’re sick, and maybe not even then (depending on our insurance). I have an uncle, however, who has a cyst on his kidneys. He did regular check-ups when he was in the army, and he realized that he probably always had a cyst on his kidneys; he can see an odd renal function number showing up from the age of about thirty. Now it’s really an odd number, but there seems to be no reason to panic about so he doesn’t.
So I like knowing what my “normal” numbers are, so that if they change when I get older, there’s a reference, hence the check-up
It turns out that I’m anemic. I also had the doctor check my hormone levels to see if I was in menopause, but apparently I am not. I haven’t had a period in over a year now, so I didn’t really know what to think.
I began taking iron and started to feel better, even though the anemia seems to have come on slowly over a long period of time. I never noticed that I was lacking energy; I just put it up to the divorce, depression, aging, menopause, whatever.
The iron works and I have the strange, rather wonderful return of my menstruation. I felt so old and useless without my period, like I’d passed over on the other side from youth to old age, become a useless fart and was starting my slow decline into death. My hair and skin felt dry. My articulations ached.
I haven’t exactly found the fountain of youth, but it’s different to have a period again, and rather nice. I feel stronger, younger, even with the cramps and headache that comes along with them. I never thought I’d miss having a period, but I did when it stopped for a whole year. I am now the Iron Lady, and menopause can just go hang itself, at least for a little while.