I’m sorry I’ve not been posting much here recently. Truth be told, I’ve had a lot of other things on my mind. While I have gotten some gaming in, I’ve not really felt much like saying too much about it.
I was hoping that I was going to be able to write a relieved post today about how it turns out I don’t actually have cancer after all. Unfortunately, after my hospital appointment today, we still don’t know, and so I have a whole spectrum of interesting tests coming up in the next few weeks.
Lets lay it out. It’s a rather squeam-inducing and embarrassing topic for a chap to discuss, but I might as well be open about it.
My body has been in a state of decline for a few years, with various organs deciding that they could no longer be bothered to work properly, not least of which was my brain, which has not been feeling particularly sharp of late. Why all this was happening was a bit of a spooky mystery, but we suspected that the toxins that my liver was steadfastly refusing to filter out of my blood were probably not doing the rest of me any good.
Anyhows, that was the state of play until a few months ago, when my good friend, Dave Fuller, suggested to me that maybe I should get my testosterone levels checked. Testosterone is an incredibly important hormone, and low levels can trash your concentration and energy, cause depression, prevent muscle growth no matter how much you exercise, and even, in extreme cases, cause your organs to pack up. Well, this sounded sort of familiar, so the next time I was at my GP I asked him if I could get that tested for along with all my usual blood tests.
The thing is, male hormone-replacement therapy is getting to be a bit trendy, and GPs are somewhat beset by middle aged men trying to persuade them to put them on it. That particular therapy, for folks with normal hormone levels for their age, is not available on the NHS. There was, then, a bit of resistance from my GP. I argued that it might be the root cause of my depression, and that it would save us all a lot of trouble if that turned out to be the case. Largely, I suspect, to humour me, he agreed we’d test it, just to see.
The results were devastating. My testosterone levels are, well, practically non-existent. How long this has been going on is hard to say at this stage, but it seems likely that it has seriously messed up a good portion of my life up until now. I spent a month or more being pretty damn angry and bitter about that. I’m largely through the anger now, and looking forward to the possibility of getting a fully functional body and mind. Should that come to pass, I do, I shall warn you, reserve the right to catch up on some of the youthful adventures that I missed out on.
First though, we needed to find out exactly why my testosterone levels are so low. I’m pretty much hitting the embarrassment wall here. Suffice it to say that parts of my body have been poked, prodded, and scanned. It was during an ultrasound that the operators found something of interest. They were actually just supposed to be checking the blood flow (which turned out to be fine), but there it was; a dark blob, its dense structure absorbing the ultrasound far more than the surrounding tissue, or anything else that ought to be there.
Funny thing is, it probably has absolutely nothing to do with my low testosterone levels. We just happened to be looking in the right place at the right time to catch the very early stages of whatever it is. We still don’t know its exact nature, but it scares me terribly. It perches upon my shoulder during my waking hours, pregnant with dark possibilities. It is difficult to think of much else, and I’m afraid that I have been not been feeling terribly inspired to write about games, even when I feel well enough to play.
But I will. Don’t go deleting me from your RSS just yet. I’ve a whole lot of scans to get through, and likely a fair amount of being needled, stabbed, and sliced, but I’m going to get through this, and with any luck, I might even end up with a properly working brain again, and the strength to use it.