In general, I am a worrier, but it is a focused worry. I worry about my husband, my daughter, my friends. Are they all safe, healthy, and happy?
But I don’t worry about things like “what if there is traffic and we are really late to the appointment, airport, restaurants, meeting ….” you get the idea. I try to worry only about things I have control over. For the other things, I try to be prepared and do what I can. I bring a jacket almost everywhere because I hate being cold. I usually have snacks in my purse because even though my daughter is 19, she gets so grumpy when she’s “hangry”. But if we are late we are late, we can call to be polite but there isn’t much we can do. If we miss our connecting flight, we’ll see what our options are when we land. No point worrying now. Nothing I can do about it while sitting on an airplane. Maybe the connection is late too? Who knows? Maybe something fun will come of the delay.
But having to take Tamoxifen after my breast cancer treatment is a whole new thing for me. I have done other posts about why I don’t dwell on my treatment or what the future might bring. But this stupid little white pill is something else, it’s a whole new stress and dilemma for me.
Every day for the next 5 to 10 years I am supposed to take it.
Once a day.
Definitely not twice a day.
So If I can’t remember if I took it there is a problem. I am not supposed to take it twice.
So if I can’t remember, the safest thing to do is to not take it again.
But if I didn’t take it, I am missing a dose.
That’s really where the stress comes in. The “what ifs”?
What if 20, 30, or 40 years from now they find something wrong with me again? Could it be from that one missed dose? What if I missed one a year for 10 years? That’s 10 missed doses! Twice a year? Or once a month?
You can see how quickly this can spiral and become paralyzing. At least for me.
Taking this one little white pill every day has exposed me to a whole world of worry that I never knew existed. I never thought to check on friends and family that have to take medication to stay healthy. Honestly, I never even thought to ask much about it. But now I try to. Not because I want something else to worry about. But because I know that it’s a stressful thing to have to remember to do and I don’t want to have any regrets.
This really isn’t meant to be a lecture about taking your medication as directed or scare people who may have forgotten a dose now and then. It’s meant to shed a little light on the importance of taking your medication and helping your friends and family remember to take theirs too. If you have a medication that will help to keep you happy and healthy it isn’t something to be hidden. Tell people so they can support you.
Not only will it keep you healthy now, but it will alleviate any doubts you have in the future about whether you did all you could to keep yourself and your family healthy.
No matter how you choose to keep track of your medication, please take your medications as directed.