As you know, this blog isn’t just a place for me to research and write about Endometriosis, or to share stories of other EndoWarriors…but it’s also my therapy.
And today I need to just let some stuff off of my chest:
Late yesterday afternoon, I received the final official confirmation that my bowel resection surgery is all approved by my insurance company. November 26th is 10 days away. And it’s going to happen…
Prior to yesterday’s official proclamation, I was 100% purely excited. “Get this damn disease out of me,” has been my honest response, followed by, “I’m not scared, I’m in good hands, I’m ready.”
Now? I feel as if I need to crawl into the depths of my nerve-wracked stomach. I want to pull all the warm darkness around me and just shiver. I’m scared. I want to cry. I want it to be over with.
All of the “What Ifs” come bubbling up.
What if they don’t find anything? Even though there are photographs of big endo lesions on my small intestines…this is still my biggest What If.
What if we need to reschedule surgery because of (fill in the blank)?
What if they find more Endo and have to take MORE of my guts than originally intended?
What if I need an ileostomy bag?
What if the surgery doesn’t resolve my current pain?
What if my bowels don’t heal right, I leak, and have to go back in?
What if I suffer from future bowel blockages due to scar tissue?
What if I don’t wake up…?
I know in my heart-of-hearts that everything will be okay. I’m in wonderful surgical hands. I trust my surgeons completely. They’re incredible. I’ll receive great care at Scripps Memorial Hospital for a few days until I’m released. My Mum will also be with me while I’m there. And yet I’m still fucking terrified.
I’m terrified I’ll be perceived as weak in the hospital. There’s a specific shoulder pain that comes with abdominal surgeries that makes me howl in pain. It’s a noise I cannot suppress… And for days after my prior laparoscopies, I am unable to get in and out of bed alone. I cannot sit up without help. I can’t use the bathroom without someone to help me get up and down. I’m sure the nurses know this and are used to it, but I’m still worried I’ll be “that patient.”
And to top it all off? I may very well be on my period during my surgery…
When friends, co-workers, and family members ask me, “Will this surgery fix you?” – I have to take a breath. Then I have to tell myself I’m not broken. THEN I explain (again) that this is an incurable disease. That I hope it fixes it for a long while. That I hope this specific surgery removes the source of my current pain.
One co-worker even said, “I feel so bad for you because you’ve had so many health problems over the past few years.” I wanted to smack her and yell, “I don’t have health problems. I have Endometriosis.” Such a knee-jerk reaction. But I felt like she never really listened as I explained the illness, what it can do, why it can require so much surgery. And it just hurt.
But having to explain it over and over again gets exhausting.
I pooped today. The third time since 6:30 this morning. And I cannot adequately express the agony of it. First the right side (where my constant pain is) screamed. Then the broken glass and barbed wire scooted across my lower abdomen…where it met up with the burning side of my left lower abdomen (which burns every time I have to shit) and finally killed me on the way out with a piercing pain. Sitting on the toilet at work, trying hard to breathe through it and not cry out while tears escape the eyes…No good. No good at all.
Ten more days of nerves, and wondering, and playing this damn game in my head. Ten more days of constant pain. Ten more days of just really wanting it to be over with already.
I AM scared and nervous. I’m in good hands. I’m ready. And I’m excited.
9 days, 18 hours, 59minutes, and 15 seconds to go…
And for some reason, as always, acknowledging and writing out what the heck is upsetting me always does help…at least a little bit. So, thank you for being here to read this.