Several mornings ago I woke up with severe lower-left abdominal pains. From 4:30 am to 6:30 am I counted the seconds between each throbbing ache, the seconds before my appendix would explode and burst through my stomach and all over my clean sheets. At 7am, google.com provided enough evidence that the appendix is safely on the right side of the abdomen, so I immediately searched for some other explanation to freak out about, perhaps it was a hernia or the onset of menopause.

I am a relatively restrained freaker-outer, saving screaming outbursts for random appearances of cockroaches and opossums, but several mornings ago I couldn’t really hide the fact that I thought something was seriously wrong.

The thing is, I have had something seriously wrong with me physically far too many times in the past eight months. First, there were the more than 18 consecutive days of not pooping, the details of which I will kindly spare you. Then the bad back wherein I stayed in bed unable to move for more than two weeks, wherein the husband had to take a week off from work to make sure I didn’t fall out of bed and die alone.

If that weren’t lovely enough, both my husband and I then suffered over six weeks of walking pneumonia, a type of pneumonia that’s totally pneumonia but a type of pneumonia where you’re totally sick but not so totally sick that you can’t get up and walk around. We could walk around, sure, just like they told us we could walk around, but did we want to walk around? Six weeks of not walking around.

And then this… this lower abdominal frustration. I don’t think I’ve ever been so frustrated, my god, not again, I can’t be sick again, what the hell is going on, you can’t be serious. But, alas, the Mormon god was serious.

So I’ve got myself an Ovarian Cyst®, the kind, they say, that’s totally normal, it happens all the time. Nothing to worry about until it ruptures and you experience unbearable, body-wracking convulsions not unlike those experienced when entire houses collapse on your lower body. Hey, no problem.

So, I’m trying to figure out, what has happened in the last eight months to make me so susceptible to disease? Is it the most wonderfully reciprocated love I’ve found in the man of my dreams, rendering me helpless in the face of ugly bacteria? Is it just the fact that I’m getting really old and sagging in places only people in Kentucky should be sagging? Is it the fact that I’ve rejected Mormonism and the Mormon god is not at all happy about it?

I really think, seriously, after several minutes of deliberation, that both my husband and I are allergic to the dog. And that’s it. That’s it!

We’ve had the dog for over 6 months, and during that time everything has gone wrong. It is because of my dog that I have been smitten with an Ovarian Cyst®; it is because of my dog that my husband can’t breathe with phlegm-free lungs. I can safely blame the dog for everything, including the fact that both my husband and I will leave the house in our pajamas in the middle of a rain storm so that the dog can play with his best friend, the half-Doberman, half-Lab mix from one block over, after we’ve both promised each other that, no, we’re not going to give into the dog today.

The husband, now, has a nasty, nasty cold.