For years there has been an assortment of nagging health issues that I really need to have treated by a professional. Physically I have a problem with one of my knees and I have high blood pressure. Psychologically I have anxiety and depression.
The anxiety and depression are never going to be treated because I am not a “therapy” kind of person. While I write somewhat freely on here, I do not talk about these issues in my normal life. Only my late boyfriend knew about all of them. Since I’m not willing to spill to a stranger, especially not one who is only listening to me bitch because they have been paid to, no treatment will be happening. Not even the small amount my insurance would cover.
The physical problems are a different issue. My insurance would cover them to an extent that I could afford the treatment, but I still don’t go. I did have the blood pressure under control for a while many years ago, but then I lost my insurance coverage and stopped treating it. Since I got coverage back a few years ago, I have not gone at all.
The reasons for this go back to my childhood.
My mother was medically neglectful. I was almost never taken to the doctor. Because I so rarely went, I was terrified of even the mention of a doctor or dentist. Instead of, oh, I don’t know…fucking parenting…and making me go or helping me get through it, she just let me skip it all.
Once I was an adult, she would talk about what a difficult child I was and how I refused to go to the doctor. Ummmm…wasn’t it her job, as the adult, to make me go? To make sure I was taken care of?
I got the chicken pox in 5th grade and she asked the pharmacist what it was and then got some calamine lotion.
I was in private school until 8th grade and when she had to enroll me in a public school, instead of making me get the shots I needed to be allowed to go there, she signed the philosophical exemption form. I still have no clue which, if any, vaccines I had as a child. She was a borderline hoarder and I found tons of paperwork of every type after she died, but never any kind of shot records for me. Back then there were a lot fewer vaccines than now, but I’m sure some were recommended.
I still carry that anxiety for anything medical. Unlike her, I’m not a shitty parent. My son is fully up to date on all his vaccines and goes regularly for all his medical needs. Since he came out as transgender and started transitioning, we go a lot more than what is average for a kid his age. I’m anxious and uncomfortable through all of it, but I suck it up and take care of my kid.
I don’t suck it up and take care of myself. I’ve even tried using the argument with myself that my son deserves to have me healthy. Or at least healthier. The blood pressure is especially worrisome because it is called the silent killer for a reason.
There is a foundation of unworthiness that colors everything I think about myself. My mother taught me with both her actions and her words that she considered me unworthy of basic care and love. Your mother is the person who is supposed to love you, no matter what. That is the message society sends.
It is a message that I internalized and still carry with me. If my own mother (multiple parents, actually, but that is a story for a different day) could not love me, there must be something fundamentally wrong with me. Something unlovable.
When it comes to taking care of myself with something as basic as healthcare, there is a huge wall inside me that resists. Deep down I do not believe I am worthy of being taken care of. Not by others. Not by myself. Anything I do for me is a waste of time, energy, and resources.
The combination of anxiety and feelings of unworthiness are going to eventually kill me if I don’t figure out a way around or through them.
When Mother’s Day finally passes on Sunday, I will be through my bad season. Spring always sucks for me because of Mother’s Day and my mother’s birthday that was in April. It’s a bombardment of bad memories for several weeks in a row.
Once again. I will be looking for a way to convince myself to seek the care I need. To convince myself that I deserve a basic level of self-care. To convince myself that my mother was wrong about me.