Me Me Me!

Well, it's my birthday - 37 years old and feeling a little worse for wear this year. What a year it's been! The good news today is that I am feeling almost 100% better now. On Monday, as I put him to bed, my dear, sweet son asked me, "what do you want for your birthday, Mommy?" My eyes began to well up with tears as the realization came immediately into my mind that the one and only thing I wanted was to feel better. But, rather than burden my precious four year-old innocent with the reality of my suffering, I just smiled through the tears and told him all I wanted was a million hugs and kisses from him. He laughed and said, "no, Mom - a present! What do you want for a present?" How little understand about the intense love their parents have for them. He does not and will not, until he has of his own, understand that there is no better present on the face of the earth than a million of his sweet hugs and kisses.

Hugs and kisses aside (although I know he'll begin delivering them in the morning!), birthday wishes do seem to come true. So, happy birthday to me. Thanks, Mom, for enduring the labor and pushing me out 37 years ago! Thanks to the pharmeceutical chemists who make good drugs. And thanks to my wonderful husband and adorable son for making my life a joy beyond measure, even in hellish months like the one that just passed. Happy birthday, indeed.

What follows is a shameless, unapologetic pity party that contains graphic medical content.

In the past month, I have taken some small comfort, albeit somewhat sick and mildly twisted, in the fairly widespread and accepted assertion that other than birth, ney stone pain is as bad as it gets. I have learned firsthand that the evil, evil people who have spread that lie have obviously never suffered from hours upon hours of bladder spasms, induced by the placement and subsequent removal of a stent, a little, horrid piece of rubber or plastic that is placed into one's ureter to keep it from scarring shut or becoming blocked by stones that are being passed. Believe me - these bladder spasms are hell on earth.

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