11 septembre 2005

The meme that dare not speak its name

Got tagged. By Suzanna. Of all people. She makes even a meme interesting and then she tags people with it, like it's possible to go after her. Oh well. Let's get this done and my street cred over with, shall we?

id•i•o•syn•cra•sy
1. A structural or behavioral characteristic peculiar to an individual or group.
2. A physiological or temperamental peculiarity.
3. An unusual individual reaction to food or a drug.

List five of your own idiosyncrasies and then tag five friends to do the same.

Phew.
Where do I even start?

I have a rare disease, myositis ossificans (are you suitably impressed?). Which means that every time I fall on or hit my left thigh, I run the risk of getting yet another piece of bone on my thigh muscle. To make things even more idiosyncratic, notice how they say it seldom appears before the first decade of life? I got diagnosed when I was 7. And of course, if I fall, it will mostly be on my left side, because life would just be no fun otherwise, would it? I have two or three more ossifications now (they took out the first one when they saw it, because it was so rare (I love showing off) then that they didn't know it was ill-advised), maybe more, but I wouldn't know because I haven't had a catscan or MRI for three years now. Really what this means is that there are things I physically can't do because it either hurts like mad or is very uncomfortable, but as the last specialist I saw said, "Advil helps? Oh good, I'll give you a prescription". No more serious than that.

That's
actually a good one to go on from. I hate going to the doctor's. But I will always imagine I have the worst disease. And no, I don't actually qualify as a hypochondriac as when I do in fact suffer from something, I will not go to the doctor's for fear that it will be really serious, so I'll end up minimising it. My one-before-last thigh catscan was really a case in point. For various reasons (mostly because I'd misread something), I was convinced I had developed cancer, so I was dreading the results, especially as the radiologist (?) scared the shit out of me (silly woman with no patient skills at all). Except of course I hadn't. So now that I know it's not cancer, who cares that everybody said I should watch it? What I don't know can't hurt, right? And I don't really want to know that my 3-inch bit of new bone is now 4 or 5.

Still on health, then. I have malaria (is that idiosyncratic?). I think you can get rid of it after a while, and as I left Cameroon 14 years ago, maybe it's gone from my bloodstream now, but it means two things for me: first, nobody will accept my blood because they don't want to transfuse potentially diseased blood, which is comforting somehow (they will take platelets though, except it takes something like 3 hours so I have to make time for it. Which is not too much of a problem these days, eh). Second, at the end of fall, without fail, I'll feel like shit for a week or two in the evening (and only in the evening, and not every evening - now that has to be idiosyncratic?), with fever, shivers, headaches and stuff like that. But I've never had a bona fide malaria attack since I left - touch wood, because it's not pleasant.

Despite my thigh, I love going for walks in complicated bits of scenery. Honestly, I do. I'd love to be able to climb mountains, but my thigh makes that impossible (and hurray for not even having to make up excuses). So I like to scramble and stuff, but I have as much confidence in my legs (and myself) as I have chances of ever meeting George Clooney (which, granted, is previous-me now, but he may as well still be useful). So I'll walk and potter about and blah, but every time, every time I say, there will come a moment when I get stuck in a very dangerous (in my mind anyway) spot and just go: "That's it. Not going anywhere now. Call the helicopters." Every time. My friends are sick of me.

The last one is blogging-related. I don't tag. (But do tag yourselves in the comments.)