Last year at this time, I feared that I had heart issues based on what I had read about some of the cancer medications that I had been on, so I went to the cardiologist and they administered some tests. When I came back to the cardiologist to discuss results with the doctor, I was told that they had found “something” in the echocardiogram and Holter monitor readings.
But I still had questions, so I had a consultation with the cardiac nurse, who went through everything with me.
And it turns out that while they did find “something”, it wasn’t really anything out of the ordinary, beyond normal wear and tear. I was assured that my heart was very strong and healthy and I could continue to push through high-intensity workouts.
Still, it was recommended that I get checked out again this year.
But you know what? I’m not going right now. It felt like anxiety about the scans and then waiting for the results did worse things to my heart than whatever I might have been already experiencing.
I talked this over with my oncologist, who agreed.
The fact is, there are things that you need to get checked out, especially as a cancer survivor. But for other things, especially without a specific indication that there’s something wrong, you are simply looking for trouble. And if you’re looking for it, you’re going to find it.
Our bodies are not perfect. And the older we get, the more aches, pains and abnormalities we have. That doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s anything “wrong” that immediately needs to be fixed.
Anxiety was the driver for me to get tests run. I was overreading about everything that could possibly go wrong–given the medications that I had been taking–and then rushing out to make sure that it hadn’t yet in the hope that I could rectify any budding issues.
And to be fair, there are still things that I could look at, still specialists I could contact. But perhaps I need to chill a bit…
…but perhaps I need to chill a bit. If it were to progress, would I stop exercising? Absolutely not. So then perhaps it’s best to take a wait-and-see approach for now.
All of this is so different from cancer, which drives us to seek treatment immediately. I am forever primed to worry about what might be happening in my body. But I also recognize this as a psychological side effect of cancer. I can’t let fear take over the rest of my life.
So for me, it’s time to stop looking for trouble, stop fearing for the future and simply relax and enjoy what’s happening in the present moment.