Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Hysteria

We now return to our regularly scheduled serious pontification. I am 4 weeks post-op from a Total Abdominal Hysterectomy. (That means they cut me in half to get my girl parts out). This was never in my plans for 2006, but after having unbearable pain for the last 6 months and missing work at least once per month, something had to give.

Our minds are so complex, aren't they? I'm 39, have a wonderful 6 yr. old (but had serious complications after her birth), and am divorced...so it is pretty obvious that I would not be having another child. Yet, when the doc told me post-op after a diagnostic laparoscopy, "Your only option is a total hysterectomy.", I was sort of in shock. I had even joked with him that if he saw anything in there that needed to be yanked out, have at it! Then I felt guilty for saying it after I realized that I should've been careful for what I asked for. So I dealt with a little bit of mourning for the removal of the girl parts. Will I still be fully female? Will I grow a beard? Obviously, what makes a person a woman is not just dependent on organs, but again, the mind is a strange complexity of subconsious thoughts you didn't even know you were having.

Let me just say, SURGERY SUCKED. When I awoke and they were trying to move me from stretcher to bed; I was in such horrific pain that I was reduced to BEGGING for something to help relieve the pain. I never dreamed a person could bear that much agony and live. At the bedside, I was given a Dilaudid PCA pump but was so out of it that my friend had to keep reminding me to push the button. I want to say that I made the mistake of blaming the nurses--thinking they were neglecting to give me enough pain meds, but after reviewing my chart found out that I had severe adhesions that they had to deal with in addition to a "normal" abdominal hysterectomy, and one of my RN friends informed me that would be why I had more pain than anticipated. I have hundreds, if not thousands, of stitches internally. I found out that in recovery, I was given Morphine, 2 doses of Versed, Dilaudid, Toradol, and then finally Valium by the end of the first day! It made my head swim, but didn't touch the pain. So they did do the best they could even though the pain was horrendous.

I just wish someone would have prepared me--my doc said he didn't want to frighten me, but I'm the type of person who wants to know what I'm headed for--that way I will know that it's ok, and "this too shall pass".

Time does heal all wounds. At week 4, I am doing much better--still in some pain--but at least I'm now able to get out of the house and drive. It is a little humbling to have to use the motorized wheelchair cart at Wal-Mart, though. I will never be impatient to have them get out of my way again. Until you've walked (or rode, as it were) in a person's shoes, you just don't know...

So there's the Part One of my hystory...more to come. Time for a nap.

2 comments:

marc bryant said...

You used the wheelchair ride at Wal-Mart? Wow. Going to Wal-Mart is one thing but. Wow. Glad you're on the mend.

Jamie said...

I've had two c-sections. The first one was an emergency procedure and the pain was horrific because I had labored all night and tried to push my stubborn girl out for 2 1/2 hours. The second one as scheduled and MUCH better recovery wise. I have just an idea of an inkling of the pain you have been through. I can't imagine. Here's to a continued speedy and complication free recovery!