I have no idea how I should be feeling. I am at a complete loss. Thus, I seem to feel nothing.
I should consider last week my worst week ever, times ten. But I don’t. Somehow I have managed an equal feeling of frustration, anger and relief all at once. You are not gonna be happy after reading this post. I’m not gonna be all that happy posting it but there are too many people, people I am far away from that rely on me to keep them up to date and perhaps some who are closer that want the details I am too modest to offer in person. Long story short: last week sucked.
Almost by magic, the heavy downpour from the typhoon subsided when I left the house. I didn’t care, I was still proud to be sporting my cute, new rainboots. Surprisingly, the morning train was empty. I had my choice of seats and chose the coveted end seat nearest the door. My Simpsons class went great- the students really got into it and asked some great questions and made some very insightful observations regarding the episode. The day was off to a great start. I just had to make it through two more afternoon kids classes before the freedom of a three-day weekend arrived. Or so I thought.
The boss called me into her office along with my cohort. We were both surprised to hear that one of us was gonna get the axe. Enrollment was down for the upcoming semester and currently the school didn’t require all the teachers we had on staff. Since we were the two with 6-month contracts, it was our jobs at risk. Through no fault of our own, we managed to draw the short straws. I suddenly felt like I was in a boardroom with Mr. Trump and I was being asked why I should get to be the next apprentice. But is that what I wanted? Or was it a chance to move on to something bigger, better and closer to home?
But it’s not that easy to find a job for just 6-months. Most company contracts are minimum 1-year. We were supposed to go home in March. Escape the comfortable black hole that is South Korea. It’s complicated, especially as half a couple.
Just when I thought for sure that I shoulda gone home in March instead of staying here- my wonderful and supportive boyfriend reminded me if we went home we would have never saved our wonderfully goofy puppy, NamJin. So maybe everything happens for a reason. . . what else is there that I have to do before leaving?
Traffic was the worst it’s ever been on the way to the doctors office. It gave me far too much ‘thinking’ time. Time to think about what I should do. The Clash song Should I Stay or Should I Go? playing on my internal soundtrack.
The doctor was 20 minutes late. Also, a first for Korea. Usually, they are so efficient and timely at Gangnam Severance Hospital. A part of me felt lucky that I wasn’t nervous about the results of my brain MRI. It had been over a month since the scan and just two weeks before that when I learned about follicular cysts on my ovaries. I was ready for anything.
Three years ago, I was in a similar position. The doctors diagnosed me with a condition known as hyperprolactemia and told me they had to check for a brain tumor. The MRI came back negative; but they decided it would be best for me to go on medication anyway.
A year later, I moved to Korea and went off the meds; but they appeared to work because all of my symptoms seemed to have disappeared. I felt the happiest and healthiest I had been in a very long time. Before I could get too comfortable, I had to undergo gallbladder surgery for gallstones. This was only 2 months after arriving to begin my new career in South Korea. Many of my symptoms came back; but this time my doctor was reluctant to perform another scan or put me back on any medication. She just monitored my blood and waited it out.
Once I moved to Gangnam, I found a new doctor. This one a specialist who immediately did an ultrasound to answer my concerns about cysts and also ordered an MRI to confirm the findings of the last one that, as Arnold would say, “Is nah a toomah!” I like this guy, he is one of the best doctors I have ever had. I couldn’t pick anyone better to deliver the surprising twist of bad news to me.
The tumor is not life threatening. It measures only 7mm and is not big enough to warrant surgery but large enough to agitate my pituitary gland into producing an excess amount of prolactin. So, back on the cabergoline I go.
I guess this is why I’m still here. To perform the goal I had in mind when I decided to make the move: learn to take care of myself and put my needs first. (Very Eat, Pray, Love of me, I know.) Believe me, I’m getting lots more practice at this than I ever imagined.