The short answer: because if you wind up heading to the ER later that day with a gallstone attack, you will feel very defensive about your food choices. (I swear, it was only about a 2 ounce scoop, and I was out running errands at 6 AM on a very hot day; it seemed like a decent idea at the time.)
I had a handful of gallstone attacks a few years ago. They came painfully and unpredictably, but disappeared withing 20 minutes to an hour. When this one came on, I was pretty sure what it was and waited, maybe too patiently, for the pain to go away.
The pain was as relentless as that of childbirth labor pains. It simply Did. Not. Stop.
I couldn't get comfortable. I bent, I turned, I twisted, I moved from my back to my side to all fours, but the only relief I felt was a brief respite after a moaning til I ran out of breath. But then, how long could I go without breathing? And if the pain was so bad that I was writhing and moaning, why did I wait three hours before deciding to go to the ER? Good questions all.
Eventually, a small dose of morphine put some distance between my mind and the pain. But while I still had my senses, I thought of friends like Brandie, who recently had a double mastectomy, and dear Susan, whose fight against cancer has brought her more pain than anyone should experience in her lifetime (and yet, she still runs circles around me productivity-wise. For example.).
I especially think of Susan each year around BlogHer. In 2007, just weeks before the conference, she was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer, the breast cancer without a lump. Because she need to stay home and start chemo, Susan passed her room at the conference hotel to Robyn and I.
She's been fighting on and off since 2007 and she's not done yet. She's mentored women in the planetary sciences (yeah, she's a rocket scientist), as well as other mothers with cancer. Susan has also inspired and helped so many more.
So, um, how do I neatly wrap up this post?
My pain was bad, but the pain of women with breast cancer is worse. The number of my friends who have or have had breast cancer is growing at an alarming rate (I was warned this would happen after 40). There is no way to neatly tie this up with a humorous punch line.
I can only say I'm sorry I won't see these friends at BlogHer this year and I look forward to seeing them later this year.
Please, please sign up for the Army of Women and do what you can to support breast cancer research.