Lump in the Throat/Hail to Tricky Dickie/Marbles in a Barn

Today I had a lump in my throat most of the day. That is what I call anxiety. That is what I felt throughout high school and college and after, during two dozen years of talk talk talk therapy and insight therapy and diving-down-deep-intoto-your feelings therapy and transactional analysis (I'm OK, you're OK--remember that?), and vitamin-nutrient therapy and take-aloe-vera-capsules therapy and a no-fermented foods regime, and no refined sugars and no alcohol and acupunture and little drops of allergens to put under my tongue with a needle-less syringe, and feminist/not-so feminist therapy, and finally the thing that got rid of the lump was Prozac. It was prescribed by the MD acupuncturist who'd tried Eastern and other cures on me. It worked. And its cousins in the SSRI family. To this day. Except if I don't get enough sleep, or if I drink a latte without enough food to balance it, (Today I didn't get enough sleep and our literary magazine intern so kindly brought me a latte first thing in my morning.) Or if my body gets too used to the medly of Prozac relatives. Or if (and this is troubling me right now) I don't get any effect from the generic equivalent of a pill that's in the medley. Our insurance changed and won't cover a certain brand. I would rather not pay $5 *each* for a brand-name tablet I take twice a day. But the generic has a history of not working for me. So today was it the generic not working or the lack of sleep and the early latte? Such things, I'm afraid, are only of interest to me, so sorry that I've brought you here with me. But you knew I was a delicate instrument.

I didn't meet L until I'd been on Prozac six months. I tell him he's never seen me in my feral state. He's seen enough of my moodiness so that he gets the idea. He says. Once, years ago, an aquaintance (one of those people who thought law school was the answer and--surprise!--hated being a lawyer) wondered aloud why it was that so many people, especially women, need these pills to get through their lives, much less their days. She thought that the social environment was the culprit. Her view is feminist, and Marxist, both lenses that I like to use, but I don't think the patriarchy is putting the lump in my throat. I wish I could blame it for that. I can blame it for my non-participation in sports--that, and asthma. The patriarchy kept women from moving freely for centuries. We didn't get a semblance of sports equality until the passage of Title IX during the administration of Richard Nixon, of all people. A Democratic Congress helped. So let's tip a hat to Tricky Dickie and go about our way. One easy explanation for my tension and anxiety is the continual persecution of the Jews. But not all Jews are as troubled and worried and tense and anxious as I am. I have an overdeveloped "flight" (as in fight or flight or freeze) response, which may have been a boon, from Neandertal time onward through pogroms. How devious Mother Nature is, though, to have given excessive "flight" to a person who gets asthma when she runs. Mother Nature makes Tricky Dickie look like... a third-rate burglar.

L says the anxiety is from, well, you know: b----- c----.

Sentinel nodes redux

I corresponded with Dr. Fancy's nurse about sentinel nodes. She told me that the doctor has performed thousands of them and has had very few problems with them. She went into some detail. So that's settled. I want her to do the surgery. I have an appointment tomorrow with the Plastic Surgeon of the Stars. His office is at a prestigious address, and the decor is supposed to be beautiful. I suppose such things count when you're in the making-beautiful business. I hope I don't love his photo album of before-and-after breasts more than the one in the Armenian plastic surgeon's office. This plastic surgeon operates only at private clinics and at Plainer Hospital. But I want the regular surgeon at Fancy Hospital. L says I 'd better make an appointment for surgery tomorrow afternoon, that it doesn't matter if I get a new breast or what it looks like if I do get one. He's afraid the invasive cancer is making its way right now into my lymphatic system and bloodstream. We mentioned this fear to the doctor at Plainer Hospital, whom I should probably call Dr. Trope, for the all the figures of speech he used. He said that the cancer is like a horse that's already out of the barn. How did that go? He also talked about going into a box of marbles but not disturbing their position, but that was in relation to the second level of lymph nodes. And something about how not counting furniture in a room is like not knowing how many lymph nodes each person has...

But he didn't say how fast the horse is going toward the lymph nodes...