My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Monday, March 28, 2016

Time Flies / My Hysterectomy (more than you ever wanted to know about it!)

Time flies, even when you're NOT having fun! Ten days since my last blog post... what can I tell you about the last ten days? Hmmmm.... I've had a lot of pain, from my shoulder, my other arthritic bits, another tooth that's going bad in a bad way and giving me fits, I've had a lot of headachey / dizzy / flaring kinds of days. The "pain rash" that my primary care doctor suspected to be a symptom of lupus is with me today and it makes my face so hot and tight... even though my blood tested negative for lupus, there's definitely some kind of connection between the rash and flares of whatever - fibro or whatever.

Steroid shots are now on my list of "not worth it" because I really believe that the only pain relief I've gotten for my shoulder has come from resting it/not sewing. I have felt unwell ever since the last shot - fluish, dizzy, extremely tired. The tooth began abscessing  - it hurts down into my jaw and back to my ear and eating has been a challenge (don't worry, I'm up to the challenge!). I already had a dentist appointment scheduled for tomorrow so it will be addressed soon. I don't know if there is a direct connection between tooth decay and steroids but it seems like that shot just set off a whole new level of ick in my world.

I'm also going through a rough round of the evil gut pain. TMI BEGINS HERE, Skip down if you want to avoid it. Just to sort of recap - the evil gut pain was diagnosed last July as post ablation tubal ligation syndrome. A uterine ablation is where they go in and scar the uterus to keep it from developing the monthly lining. The intention is to eliminate heavy periods and pain that seem to plague women of a certain age - post childbirth, pre-menopause - in an effort to avoid a hysterectomy. What has happened in my case (and, it appears is happening frequently) is that the entire surface did not scar so there are places in my uterus where the normal monthly lining develops but the scar tissue from the parts that did scar correctly prevents the lining from shedding, as in a normal period. This trapped lining becomes an ever greater problem because my tubes are tied... normally, trapped blood, etc would sort of back up into the tubes toward the ovaries. So my un-shed lining is just all trapped there causing inflammation and putting pressure on the surrounding organs. The medical term is hematrometra. This post ablation syndrome could be responsible for a lot of the issues I have - everything from back pain to hip pain to cramps to migraines - or at least, the post ablation issue is exacerbating my already existing problems. There are two ways to resolve the post ablation syndrome: menopause or hysterectomy.

New paragraph. Same story. Last Summer when I was diagnosed I was under charity care through the local hospital. My situation was not potentially life threatening so I could not get approved for a hysterectomy at that time. Not long after that I was approved for social security and I became covered under Medicare in September. Theoretically I could have gone back then and requested the hysterectomy but ... by that time we were working on my massive dental issues and then my mom got sick and... well, it just hasn't happened. There was supposed to be some coordination between the gyn and my pain doctor where I received additional pain meds / stronger pain meds to deal with the post ablation syndrome but those dots never connected. And honestly... I really don't want to take more pain meds. I want to have less pain. So I finally summoned up the courage to make an appointment with the gyn and saw him last week. He agrees that it's time for a hysterectomy, there's no reason to put it off and it will make a big difference in the amount of pain I'm in.

Because I carry a little extra weight around my middle (aka the Buddha Belly) they can't do a laparoscopic hysterectomy on me but also, because I'm heavy there's a greater risk in doing the abdominal hysterectomy. The gyn thinks I'll do best with a robotic hysterectomy because the incisions are higher up, at the thinner part of me. My gyn doesn't do the robotic kind but another doctor in his practice does. I'm set for a consultation with him on April 21st to determine a date for the surgery. We're doing Cosette's First Birthday Party in my house so I wanted to postpone the surgery until at least May. So sometime in May - or possibly later - I'll go in for the big snip.

I'm happy to have the prospect of less pain in my life but really anxious about the post surgery pain. More pain to be able to have less pain... just got to get through the more pain part. I've been watching youtube videos of this particular surgery and in a way, it helps to see what they do but what I really want to see are testimonials of women who have had as much pain as I have with this post ablation syndrome and are basking in the afterglow of their hysterectomy.

And that was way more than I thought I had to share!  TMI ENDS HERE

My mom is currently in New York loving on her 14th grandchild. It's kinda funny that my new nephew is the first grandchild on his mom's side and the 14th on his dad's! It's surreal to see my brother - who we always thought would be the bachelor uncle - being a doting dad. #meltsmyheart  They are not putting baby boy on social media but I think I can tell you that he has red hair- and we all know how partial I am to my redheaded nieces- so I am thrilled to have a little redheaded nephew!

Mom is having trouble with her blood sugar, which we expected since they took most of her pancreas. The started her on insulin injections on Friday and she left for New York on Saturday morning. I was really anxious about her having a blood sugar issue while she was traveling alone and threatened to pin a note to her shirt that said, "mawmaw has diabetes" but she made it fine. I'm getting lots of extra Oscar love since he needs constant contact with a human to survive and Pop doesn't sit still for long. Still glad I made the investment in a wider recliner so I can accommodate a passenger. Little Kitty is NOT appreciating the extra Oscar time. He even made the clicking sound he makes when he's hunting toward Oscar yesterday. He's seriously ready to eliminate the little doggie from his mommy's chair.

Cosette took  a few steps last week -I posted a video on my facebook. Tasha and I have been consulting Pinterest quite a bit for ideas for her first birthday party. You are all invited to her party (well, most of you... as most of my readers are people I know in real life and/or people who I've known for many many years via the interwebs) if you're in the area or want to make a trip to our beautiful corner of the world. The theme of the party is "Castle On A Cloud" which is the first song that young Cosette sings in Les Miserables. Google it if you'd like... it's a sweet song. Uncle Cody says that young Cosette is dreaming of Heaven then, which means that Castle On A Cloud is a song of a suicidal young Cosette... of course I disagree!  But his perspective is amusing, of course. It just hardly seems possible that 11 months (tomorrow) have gone by in her little life already! Ollie is now 8 months! I love every single day with them and I wouldn't give back a single one to have them babies for longer. Time just goes by SO FAST!

I had a rough night one night last week and got inspired to fix Easter baskets for the babies. I dragged my mom along with me Thursday afternoon to Walmart to get all the goods for the baskets. Mawmaw contributed as well. We also got our hair cut last week - it only took 11 months for us to manage to find a day where we both felt like doing it and Gail was available. My cut was mostly a trim with the same hairstyle but Gail "texturized" my hair, thinning it out a bit. When I was done it looked like someone had shaved a caveman. Mom's hair had not grown much, which turns out to be a side effect of being so terribly unwell with the cancer. I had never thought about it but it makes sense.

I snagged a picture of my nieces with their bestie, Jorjanne from yesterday. I thought I'd show you another picture of the three to give you some perspective of how quickly they grow - how time flies. The second picture was from 2012, just four years ago! And the last one is Jorjanne and Sarabeth at Christmastime in 2008. Time has flown!


I guess that's enough of an update for now... hope you had a lovely Easter and are enjoying the same beautiful Spring weather that we are! Let me know if you would like to come to Cosette's birthday party! Love and hugs!


Red*Hot@52! said...

I hope you don't mind me leaving my experience here, but I had the robotic hysterectomy on December 4, and it was the best thing I ever did. I believe you and I are similarly built, and nothing had ever been said to me about not doing the laprascopic, my surgeon automatically does robotic unless there's a reason for a traditional bikini cut operation.

Apparently while I was in the OR, they gave me a very small dose of dilaudid, and I had an extremely hard time waking up after. They kept me overnight, and I only had Tylenol via IV for the remainder of my time at the hospital (less than 24 hours once I was done with surgery). For me, the only thing that hurt post-op was coughing, and I dealt with that by holding a pillow as snugly against my tummy as I could. I only took 2 Percocet once I got home, one that evening when I got home before I went to bed, one for the digestive pain a couple days later(getting that system back to normal was somewhat painful).

Everyone responds to surgery differently, I bounced back fairly quickly and hopefully you will too!

monique said...

Wow, that's some catch up post.
I hope the hysterectomy solves your gut pain
and more. It's unbelievable how much "stuff"
is related to our lady parts. So not fair.
Steroid shots are a hit & miss. If they work they
are fantastic and if they don't...well a big disappointment.
You always have something going on in your
corner of the world.
Good luck with the dentist. It never ends with the
teeth. But we need to keep all we can.
I hope this comment makes it. I have had an issue
trying to leave comments lately.
Take care, Monica