My breath began leaving me, Jon was driving beside me and I held on tight to the seat belt, and I kept alternating between looking out the window and closing my eyes, figuring out which way could calm my racing thoughts more quickly. Unfortunately, it was neither one.
I had one of my final appointments last week in preperation for the surgery. It was explained to me that I would have a screw, just like the philips screws you see at the hardware store, sticking out of my upper gums. I would have bands and bands holding my mouth closed. I can't eat solid foods for 4 months and possibly longer. My face would be swollen. My sinuses would be packed leaving me unable to use my nose to breathe.
These facts suddenly, without warning, began clouding my thoughts. It began clouding my judgement. I began thinking irrationally and all that went through my mind is I won't be able to breathe. I won't be able to breathe. I won't be able to breathe.
I cried. The feeling of hyperventilation left me dizzy and slightly more frightened.
We arrived home. I stepped out of the car to greet our neighbors and best friends and I tried to smile, but it didn't last long. I told Shelly that I was panicking. That I had never had this happen to me, but that I didn't like it. Tears filled my eyes again.
Irrational? Yes. But very real in those few moments.
Thankfully Shelly stopped, right where we were, in the midst of kids running around us, riding bikes, asking for helmets to be put on and then taken off, and she prayed for me. She prayed for peace and calm and reassurance.
I can't say my anxiety left me right away, but I can say I'm feeling much better today.
For the past two years leading up to this big day, I have had my bouts of anxiousness. Not about the surgery, however, but about leaving my kids. I have to leave them for a whopping 17 days and am missing a birthday for my big boy as well as the first day of school. A terrible thing for this mommy to have to do.
This time, though, it wasn't about the kids. For the first time I became, for a few moments, scared for me.
It's going to be a long road ahead.