WARNING: This contains several medical terms that might make you squirm and some graphic description regarding my lady parts! If that makes you uncomfortable, you should move right along.
I am off to the hospital for a "procedure" today. How I ended up here is going to take some 'splaining:
My cervix has had a tough life these last few years.... And it has not had any problem bitching and moaning about it to me and my gynecologist every chance it gets.
It all started about four years ago with an abnormal pap smear, followed by another, followed by a closer look, Hmmm, the doctor said, it is a small dysplasia, we can take that off, no problem. But that was followed by pregnancy, so the dysplasia couldn't be removed until after I'd had the baby. The Animal was born and four months later I went to the OB/GYN office to get the displasia removed via a LEEP procedure (Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure). It hurt like a mofo, but everything seemed A-OK. My pap smears have been normal since. Yay! No cancer!!
Still with me? This is where the story starts to get complicated and where I offer a little bit of integral information. I was still breastfeeding the Animal when this was done. Seems tangential now, ...but wait.
So, everything is great. I no longer have a bunch of cells sitting on my cervix that could develop into cancer. Excellent. But life has been lacking in the bedroom and bathroom departments. It seems that my three extra-large babies have left my lady parts in what I will delicately call not tip-top condition.
You get the idea. Right? I don't have to explain what I mean in full?
And for some God-forsaken reason I had been constipated for what had seemed like forever. I talked to my doctor about these two things, thinking they were two separate issues. Turns out, after an exam confirmed his suspicions, that the two things were connected! It seems that the back of one's vaginal wall is connected to tissue that is part of your colon and that wall helps give a rigidity to both of those, um, outlets. Seems like the process of having babies vaginally had pretty much wiped out that wall dividing my two parts and that was causing the symptoms. Great. Fabulous. I prepare for my first ever surgery and sedation which will happen at the beginning of December. It is called a rectocele, which I can pronounce, and a perineorraphy, which I cannot. And it goes off without a hitch. Everybody is happy. Me. My husband. The toilet. And the bedroom.
It's all rainbows and unicorns, that is, except for that first pooh after the surgery. As any woman who has had a c-section will tell you, that first poop afterwards is scary. You have to push, you're not supposed to push, you have to push, it hurts to push, you might be tearing stitches, etc. It's horrible. And, oh. my. god. it was so horrible.... I thought I was going to die. I had cramping and couldn't get a thing out. And this isn't another tangent, this, too, is an integral part of the story....
Meanwhile in seeming non-medical news, I finish breastfeeding my baby before the surgery. I have enjoyed many, many months of period-free living. I am pissed beyond words that my period resumes the morning of our annual New Year's party (about a month after the surgery). Our theme for 2007 was to come dressed as your favorite Bond or Bond Villain. I have a 100 things to do to prepare the house and cook and clean. I was feeling a little crampy, but no period yet.... I was heading for the car when all of sudden my period starts. It does't just start, it bursts through the flood gates and pours. I literally sit on the toilet and just wait for it to finish.
Holy shit. Really? Yes, really. I've never had a period like that before, I grumble. And cramp. And grumble. And take painkillers.
I tell my doctor about it at the checkup. He says we'll keep an eye on that. And then in February, the day before I am supposed to fly to Palm Desert to spend a weekend with my sisters (the one and only Sister's weekend we have ever planned) my period starts again. Or at least it seems to start. I got the cramping part, but not the bleeding part. And the cramping, oh sweet jezus, the cramping! I cancel my plans in tears as I writhe on the couch with a heating pad on my belly and 3 motrin and 3 tylenol swimming in my system to no avail.
I go to see the doctor. He's gone for the day and the sub has ineffective advice and solutions. I return home with vicodin. The vicodin isn't working. My husband is distraught as I retreat to the bedroom to moan. The doctor steps up the meds to oxycodone. They blessedly work. For half an hour. I start to throw up from the pain. The doctor prescribes some hideously expensive anti-nausea medicine that works. I continue to die slowly in bed. Finally, my husband and I agree that this is insane and wonder why we aren't already at the ER.
We go to the ER where, quite literally, I feel like I am going to have a baby. Although, to be perfectly honest, it hurts more because I had an epidural with all three of my babies. I am finally relieved with some kind of shot that, according to my husband almost killed me, but since I passed out, I can't attest to that. I am brought into the O.R. to do a d&c to relieve my uterus of all the blood that has been unable to exit my body because, as it turns out:
The LEEP procedure that was done so many months ago, has left scar tissue across the opening of my cervix. I didn't know there was a problem for six months because I was breastfeeding and was not having a period.
So weird, right? I've never heard of anybody else having this happen and the doctors said they had heard of it, but had never seen it actually happen. Gah.
True story: My male neighbor asked me at the bus stop one morning shortly after this drama, "So.... *concerned look*... how is your cervix doing?" I died a little that day, right there on the street beside him.
Anyway, as I told you last week, I was supposed to get an IUD on Monday. Not for birth control but to get rid of my period (because it is still horrible and unpredictable and makes my life a misery for almost two weeks of every month). The doctor couldn't put the IUD in, though, because my cervix is still so scarred from the LEEP.
And all of that explains why, unexpectedly, I am now heading to the hospital on this lovely July day to have a uterine ablation, while happily sedated. Turns out, since I'm done having babies and my husband has had a vasectomy, I am a perfect candidate to have my uterus partially cauterized! (Bet you haven't heard that one before.) They will render a good portion of the wall of my uterus unable to do that thing it does when you have your period and....
Aunt Flow will only be passing by for a minute, just to say hello, from now on.
And I couldn't be happier about that. :)
In a bloggy BFF twist of fate... Rants will be coming over to act as my nursemaid tonight, as my husband is away with the kids on a camping trip. And MaggieDammit is stopping by in the morning with coffee and sunshine.
Go check out Ann's Free Association Friday today-- she has an Academy Award nominee featured today! And if you want to make me feel better, you can go read the Free Association that I did over there last Friday when most people were at BlogHer or avoiding the internet like the plaugue to get away from BlogHer. :) It is right here, waiting for your delicious comments.