Friday, October 18, 2013

One week post-op

I had my incision check yesterday. I drove the 23 minutes to the RE's office for a nurse to look at my incision sites and tell me that they have no infection and are healing very well.

   *WE INTERRUPT THIS POST FOR A SMALL DIGRESSION* Here, I want to explain that this, to me, is silly. I've talked to this kind, gentle nurse before. She recently graduated from nursing December or May, I don't remember now. I have been a practicing RN on a surgical unit for over 3 years. My daily job literally involves monitoring for infection at surgical incision sites.  We all could have saved ourselves some time. *DIGRESSION OVER*

Actually, I am very thankful that I am healing so well.  I was able to stop taking pain pills after Tuesday. Wednesday I only needed a couple of ibuprofen in the morning and before bed. Yesterday, the pain was localized to the incision sites themselves and was only slightly bothersome a couple of times. Today, well, it's pretty much just like yesterday and that's good enough for me. 

Next week, I go in for my official post-op appointment with the RE.  From what I understand, we are going to be discussing The Plan Going Forward. The discussion will include which medications I need to be on while we attempt this baby making business - I'm thinking progesterone is in and Femara is out. 

Also, it's one more week until Kris and I can finally enjoy each others, ahem, company again. I miss that guy.

Friday, October 11, 2013

The day I had surgery

The surgical procedures had long drawn out names - laparascopy, lysis of adhesion's,  hysteroscopic resection of uterine septum - but it was a fairly straightforward operation.

Laparascopy and lysis of adhesion's: the RE punctured two small holes into my abdomen. The first was through my belly button so that a scope (read: tiny video camera) could be inserted and used to visualize the work she was doing. The second was closer to my groin/pubic region and was for the instrument used to lyse (read:burn) off the two spots of endometriosis she found.  I was also informed that she discovered some of my intestine sticking to the wall of my abdomen and was able to free it and return it to its proper place. 

Hysteroscopic resection of uterine septum: this was the more important of the two procedures. Here, the RE went up my lady bits and through my cervix to access my uterus. Using another scope, the RE confirmed 100% that I did, indeed, have a septum. A second instrument was used to burn off the fibrous septum tissue. From the pictures I was given, it looks like a tiny, hot, metal bar. The RE told me, once I was awake again, that my septum was quite large.  It was actually pushing the openings of my fallopian tubes, called os, apart. In a normal uterus, the os are facing one another and touching. She also confirmed, as my mom tells it, that I very likely lost my first baby because it implanted on the septum and couldn't grow. There was almost no room for it to have implanted on healthy tissue, such was the size of my septum (and my bad luck). 

Recovery: The first thing I remember is waking up feeling like I was choking for a breath and hearing some far away voices discuss whether it was time to take the breathing tube out. I fell back to sleep before they made any decision. Then, I woke up again in the recovery room, very much not able to verbalize my thoughts or really open my eyes except for moans and briefly flickering my eye lids. Instead of just relaxing and letting the anesthesia wear away pleasantly, I stubbornly fought against it, trying to will myself to be completely awake. Once I was awake, I battled with extreme nausea before throwing up and accepting the IM phenergan shot the nurse was offering (actually, when I finally vomited, the nurse told me she was making the decision of the phenergan shot for me, and I LOVE her for it because that sucker kicked in once I was in the car and knocked me out). Before I was allowed to leave, though, I had to prove that I could walk and pee. In between the nausea and vomiting, I shuffled to the bathroom and peed the most painful pee of my felt like razor blades, no joke. Also, it was blue from the dye they used during surgery, which was fun to see. 

I am forever in praise and thankful to God for guiding the hands of my RE as she was able to successfully and completely remove my septum without complication; for a mom who stuck by my side all day, and for a husband that welcomed me home with sweet kisses.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The day I learned about loss

In honor of pregnancy and infant loss awareness month I am sharing the story of why this month holds a special place in my heart. I haven't ever told this entire story to anyone and only wrote it because K said it was probably a good idea.  The story was written after months of constant grief...a cycle of hope and crushing disappointment when it became clear that I wasn't going to get pregnant again any time soon. I contemplated changing some aspects of the story around but decided against it because I need to honor the sadness of the woman that wrote these words.

Without further adieu...

On my 26th birthday I got the best present I could have ever asked for – a positive pregnancy test.  We’d only been trying since July but I had been aching for a baby of my own since we said “I do” almost four years earlier.   I was so excited that I took multiple pictures of that beautiful, positive test and texted those to K in a rush of heart pounding excitement.  No elaborate reveals from this eager lady!

Then, days later, time slowed down as I sat in the bathroom at work while my mind processed that the blood I was seeing and the pain I was feeling probably led to nothing good. 

The proper nurse that I am, I calmly took an assessment.  “T”, I addressed myself, “are you going to be okay or are you going to freak out?" But before I had a chance to answer, time sped back up and the decision was made for me.  I dropped to my knees, crying, and spent just half a second begging the Lord – not my baby, please, please, Lord…not MY baby.  But I’m a smart women and I knew it was too late. 

The begging gave way to some semblance of rational thought as I realized my next dilemma.  You see, I'd chosen a bathroom that opened directly to a patient hall and near the main nurses’ station.  Obstacles of human interaction with patients and coworkers stood in my way between this terrible place that the bathroom had become and my goal of solace that was my managers office.  I thought through all of this and wondered if I could make it without drawing attention to myself.  I dried my eyes, slapped my cheeks, and decided to just keep my head down, making a beeline for my target.  And, folks, I did it.  I walked out of the bathroom, acted normal, and made it to her office door – my heart breaking all the while.  And then that motherfucking door was locked.  No one was there.  My plan had failed and I didn't have another one.  Stay calm, my mind chanted, stay calm, stay calm, stay calm. 

My feet carried me to the nurse’s station just a few steps away.  I was speechless, my body was numb, and my baby was bleeding out of me.  I don’t know if I spoke or even if I made a noise – everything was disconnected from everything else; all systems felt like they were working separately and it was enough just to exist, but something got the attention of our nursing secretary and so came that dreaded question.  “What’s wrong,” she asked.  “I think I just had a miscarriage,” I managed to reply and then everything failed, I covered my face, the sadness burned into me, and I cried again.