I wasn't completely sure of this, (and may have been a bit bored) so I decided that what I needed to do was to consult Dr. Google (AKA The Hypochondriacs best friend) to discover the real source of my pain.
I did a Google search for "pain under the left ribcage" and came up with 4 different things that could be wrong with me. (I made sure to do this while my children were all in the room, you know, just to make sure that there would be someone around to feel sorry for me)
#1. A collapsed lung
#2. A broken rib
#3. An enlarged or ruptured spleen
#4. A pulled muscle
Before I read these possible diagnosises (is that the correct plural form of the word? Spell check doesn't like it. Should it be diagnosi? Diagnosen?.....) out loud to the children, I made sure to see what the treatments would be for each ailment.
The top three all required, or at least suggested bed rest, so those were the ones I went with.
I told the kids about the pain in my side and that there was a possibility that I had either collapsed a lung, broken a rib, or had a ruptured spleen, and would need to take it easy for a while. I also may have mentioned that they would have to wait on me, bring me ice cream and let me control the TV remote.
They all looked at me blankly (there may have even been some eye rolling involved) and pushed me away from the computer to read the news from Dr. Google themselves.
I should have read further, because apparently, if you have a collapsed lung, it would probably make breathing difficult, and if I had a broken rib, I would be in much more pain that I appeared to be in.
Therefore, I decided that it must be my spleen.
Some of the children didn't know what a spleen was, or where it is located.
Being the very helpful kind of mother that I am, I went ahead and showed each of them where their spleen is.
It seems that my children's spleens are very ticklish, because they laughed a lot, squirmed, and tried to get away from me when I poked them under their ribs, causing me to twist around and make my spleen hurt even more.
These offspring of mine didn't really seem all that concerned about my painful spleen, and they laughed at my discomfort.
One of them even suggested that I had probably just pulled a muscle or something.
So later that night, after they all went to bed, I found a picture of a spleen online, and emailed it to each one of them.
As it turned out, a few days later it stopped hurting, and was probably just a pulled muscle.