Tuesday, March 26, 2013


Here’s my forewarning for this blog: It contains immense oversharing, and discussion of really odd medical problems. If this isn’t up your alley, go get some ice cream and watch How I Met Your Mother reruns instead, that is a better choice.

Consider yourself warned.

Over the past six-eight months, I haven’t felt the best. I have Crohn’s Disease so I was thinking it might be a flare up. I was also working like crazy, not sleeping, and eating whatever random bits of health food I could get my hands on. After a while, I began to realize the symptoms were getting much worse, something wasn’t quite right and no amount of sweets was fixing it….not even Ben and Jerry’s.

As a 20 something female I find some doctors will very easily write off symptoms, no matter the severity, in someone my age deeming it to be “stress-related.” I don’t know about you, but if you don’t feel good, or something is off, you know it. Trust that instinct, do your research (WebMD is not always research, they literally will tell you of 388,529 obscure illnesses you may have), and visit a doctor. Being armed with knowledge can help you get the care you need.

So I made my way to a [wonderful] doctor a few weeks ago. She recognized that there was something going on so I submitted myself to a few tests (If you can call one very happy phlebotomist sucking out vial after vial of blood while she asked me if “I was comfortable with needles” a test.) I was then advised to wait patiently to see if any of the tests were conclusive of some kind of medical issue.

Then I got an interesting phone call the other day…

Doc: Natalie, after reviewing your tests we have found a dermoid safhsjhfkaf (the second word was a foreign language to me) that will need to be removed with surgery, likely along with the organ it is attached to.

Natalie: Uhh what’s a dermoid asjfhkahfka?

Doc: It is commonly referred to as an unborn twin. Although medically speaking it cannot be born.

SAY WHAT?!?!?!?

After getting off the phone and discussing surgery options I made a terrible error. I Googled “Dermoid kjahjfahf.” Never again. Then I called my parents. Let me just say explaining to your parents that you “absorbed” your twin in utero and now it is inside your body, one would expect some sympathy. Instead my mom wanted to name it “Sarah” and my dad “Chafonda.” Guess who won that battle?

So here I am. Let me just say I ALWAYS knew I wasn’t meant to be an only child! I grew up with my friends Mary, Emalee, and Barbara, and never really felt like an only child. But clearly, any anger I had over being an only child was clearly stemming from the fact that I ate, er “absorbed,” my twin.

When I told my friend Shelby about my medical discovery her reply, “Only you.” This is perhaps true. I’m the person you all know who weird things happen to. That’s me! My body is really good at making odd tumor like cells, and allowing them to multiply. As a science teacher I can only hope that someday I can teach my kids about unborn twins. Surprisingly, that is not yet included in state curriculum…Hmm….

At this point in the blog you are either absolutely terrified, potentially unfriending me on Facebook, or you have Googled “dermoid ashkahjkfsa” in which case you are still terrified, and still unfriending. Or you are on WebMD, which I advise against. Because I was convinced I had some strange disease but instead I have an unborn twin, clearly WebMD is off base. In all fairness, there is a moral here. If you feel like something isn’t right with your body, trust that feeling and get some help.

I wait patienly for surgery, which will be in 2 weeks, and every night when I get a goodnight text from my mom it now says,

“Goodnight. Love you and Chafonda.” 

Thanks Mom. 

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