I try really hard not to trigger my own health anxiety. I am particularly careful of what television shows I choose to watch. For example, I really wanted to watch ‘The Big C’ but I started the first episode and realized it wasn’t for me. Then again, I actually chose to try watching that show at the same time I was having my own worries about the possibility of breast cancer, so that was a stupid move on my part. Lately though, I have gotten extremely into Breaking Bad (yes, I know I’m late to the party).
The main character has lung cancer yet for some reason I can’t stop watching it. I partly attribute my ability to cope with the show to my slow recovery. But I have noticed an increase in anxiety pertaining to my lungs.
For the past year I have had this annoying cough. My lungs are not the best- I did have to use an inhaler at one point. I’ve noticed the cough goes away when I’m relaxed so maybe it’s partly psychological, but it’s definitely partly to do with my crappy lungs.
It’s the little details in the show that make me anxious. The main character has this horrid persistent cough. And somehow I drew a link from his cough to mine. Lately I’ve been worried that I have lung cancer and I think of my cough as one of the symptoms.
Instead of going into a serious panic- I’m experimenting. Whenever I feel like coughing, I tell myself: ‘stop, it’s only psychological’. I’m hoping that maybe this will trick my brain or my lungs. Does this sound crazy and impossible? I’m willing to try anything at this point.