Friday, July 31, 2009

Cervix FAIL

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.

46 comments:

  1. Listen, if it comes with Vicodin and hardly having Aunt Flo all the time, then I'd like to give you a high five from here.

    Hope everything goes well!

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  2. That freaking sucks. I am sorry you had to go through all of this. My cousin had a Hysterectomy at 24 due to problems that sounded a lot like yours. I can only imagine how bad you must hurt!!
    Hope everything heals okay!

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  3. I haven't been on the best of terms with my cervix lately either but wow, yours has really been a bastard! Very bestest of luck to you. I hope everything goes well and recovery is swift.

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  4. Menstrual cycles in our family are from Hell. I stopped mine with an IUD 7 years ago. My mother has had two uterine ablations to keep hers gone and into menopause.

    You'll feel much better soon!

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  5. I can't believe I followed all of that! Hope you feel better soon, and by the looks of what you're having done now, I'll probably hate you for your monthly fly by's (with wings!) while the rest of us are beseeged with 3-7 days of holy horror. Tell the truth, is it partly due to the increase in cost of tampons? :-) (cuz DAMN, those things are expensive!)

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  6. I wouldn't want to have to go through all of the stuff to get to where you are... but I could sure go for that brief stopover visit... so is it weird to say I'm a little jealous?

    And with your caregiver company... just remember that painkillers and wine don't mix.

    Stick to vodka.

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  7. Oh goodness! I hope this fixes everything. I feel bad for your poor cervix!

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  8. Good Lord. I think I've heard most of this before but seeing it all in writing makes it really drives home how much you've been through. Damn, girl.

    But, if you need a laugh? You should seriously see your Google Ads right now. Heh.

    See you in the morning, sunshine. xoxo

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  9. Wow. That was really really horrible. I'm so glad I have a penis.

    Good luck.

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  10. What a story! Will there be a test on your cervix problems? Will the one with the highest score win the SWAG??? If so, I'm ready. . .

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  11. Holy crap. That story sucks! I had five giant babies vaginally without pain meds of any kind or any problems. I truly didn't know that I was, and am, a freak of nature. I look up at the sky and thank the universe about THAT. I know so many women that have fallen bladders and whatnot from childbirth. But...and I hate to say this, your story wins the OUCH award, hands down.

    I wish you the best. Yes--vodka, morphine, whatever it takes, and heal well and get through this.
    Elizabeth

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  12. Auughh you have me panicking! I had a LEEP procedure done two years ago...I wonder if mine is hideously scarred. And I haven't even gotten around to having babies of my own yet....this is definitely something to talk to my doctor about here in a couple weeks at my appt.

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  13. I had an ablation about 5 years ago...haven't bought a tamon since. It's awesome!!

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  14. Just when I think I've heard it all. Wow, that really stinks.

    I'm glad they are finally going to fix everything and hooray to no more periods!!!

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  15. Holy Freaking Wow!
    And you look so damn happy in your pictures!
    How are you going to heal with Rant's there?
    You will be busting a gut laughing!
    Oh, honey...here's hoping you get back to where you wuz before!

    No flo, though

    Peace - Rene

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  16. OH MY HELL! You have been through it woman!

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  17. What a freakin' hot mess! I'm so glad you're getting it all taken care of - I'll be praying for you, girl.

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  18. Sorry to hear of your uterine woes. Hope all is well very soon.

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  19. I had a leep cone biopsy done 3 years ago. Thankfully, I had no problems. No cancer at 3 months and I'm ashamed to say, I haven't been back since.

    On the up side, I am 2 weeks late for my period and (NO! I AM NOT PREGNANT!! YOU BITE YOUR TONGUE MISS AMY!!!) I think finally! finally! I might be going into menopause! And it's about damned time too! I'll be 54 in 2 months!

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  20. Oops! Forgot to add, I hope you heal well and everything works beautifully from now on.

    HI to Ann!

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  21. You get to hang out with MaggieDammit? Jealous. I get to hang out with ChurchPunkMom. Your turn to be jealous.

    I'm so sorry that all this has happened. It sucks major ass. I cannot imagine how painful that is. I hope this fixed everything.

    PS, It's pronounced pin-ee-o-ra-ffy. But whatevs.

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  22. Holy moly girl...I hope all goes well:)

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  23. Good luck getting your uterus burned. I sure hope this is the last leg of your journey to healthy girl parts!

    Take care.

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  24. Amy, it was so great to meet you at BlogHer (BowlHer, actually). You are charming and funny.

    I hope everything is okay with your cervix...words I never expected to type in a comment.

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  25. DUDE!?
    Normally it would have been WAY too much TMI. But since I have met you I really felt for all you are going thru.

    I am so sorry for all the pain you have been in. Its just bad when your baby-making-parts turn on you like that.

    Hang in there. Hang tough. Be glad you are able to do it here- before you go...with friends and family around. AROUND YOUR CERVIX. "Let's all hold hands around Amy's cervix and sing koombya? Okay?"

    Feel better friend. Oh and take pictures. I am not even kidding. Hello? Morphine drip? You are gonna wanna remember THAT!

    :)

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  26. OK I didn't read that. I just came cos i love you.....

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  27. Oh, ow. I'm squeezing my butt cheeks together after reading about "the first poo."

    Good luck. I think you'll find this procedure MUCH less harrowing than some of the other stuff you'v gone thru.

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  28. This sounds like a VLOG in the making!! Oh, and I can't hide that I am more than slightly jealous that you will only have a nanosecond visit at that time of the month...hope all goes well and that your cervix will be better than e-vah!

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  29. I don't know why you are so afraid to share things with us. ;)

    Hang in there.

    If I could have any nursemaid, I'd pick Ann for sure.

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  30. Men have no idea the things we go through...

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  31. I'm kind of weeping as I read this, even though you came through splendidly, because I'm having my period and sweet jesus the emotions and the baggage and the EMOTIONS!

    Of course, I'm also laughing as a result of this sentence:

    "Everybody is happy. Me. My husband. The toilet. And the bedroom."

    There's a bit of delight I take from the order given to things here...

    ;)

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  32. first off... ouch! Second of all I cringed and third... i am surprised the amount of stuff I can red and look at and not get grossed out or truned on in some situations. Weird.

    Ok Idk why i am sharing that.

    Well i hope you get better, have some rest. Drink beer.

    -Aman

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  33. I hope Ann does not make you laugh to much cause you are going to be in more pain. Long run happy camper!

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  34. Um..ow. Ow! I'm cramping in sympathy.

    Happy sedation-and-subsequent-low-flow!

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  35. Amy! I saw this blog on Geeta's facebook page and decided to check it out. Funny enough, I got a call from my DR. yesterday telling me I had another abnormal pap and have to go in for a colposcopy...I had a leep in '96 - yes it hurts like a motherfuck - and a few colposcopies since...I will think of you as they punch little holes in me. Good luck today.

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  36. I'm glad things are working out and for that first poop I hear you I had five c-sections and the first poop was so scary.
    The one breakthrough after my last section was that I took Milk Of Magnesia 3 times a day and it was so much better because I was sort of pooping water .....
    Sorry a bit gross but it helped the pain
    Hope you'll fully recover well
    Cheers,
    Anita

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  37. Read this the other day and didn't comment (I'm bad like that). Hope everything went well, and the post above this one is actually you and you're fine. Otherwise, somebody's on your blog posting pictures of you and your friends.

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  38. Amy, Hope you are feeling better. Punkone asked me about how babies are made today and I said something about eggs and menstration and he looked at me like I had ripped off a limb. It was so funny I almost choked. I guess he's finally old enough that TMI is starting to apply!

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  39. Good Lord, you poor poor woman. I hope they gave you lots of good drugs for your trouble.

    x

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  40. Good Lord, you poor poor woman. I hope they gave you lots of good drugs for your trouble.

    x

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  41. Sweet J, M, & J! Hope all goes (went) well. I am sending strength and good thoughts to you. And a hug...that won't hurt, will it?

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  42. I feel your pain... I have postponing the big "H" surgery for months.. maybe a year but every month on the couch, heating pad, and throwing up because of the pain.. glad - Aunt Flo will only be stopping for a short visit from now on... "Aunt Flo, funny"
    Love,
    Kelly

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  43. Holy cow, girl. That really sucks.

    Though I have to say, at least you get to have Ann as a nurse and Maggie come in to visit and bring food and stuff. Now that right there is awesome. Silver lining?

    I hope you feel better really quickly! Also, BTW, you look awesome. 3 kids? Holy hotness.

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  44. After my endometrial ablation, I was period-free for about 6 months, then very light for about 7 years. Now I am perimenopausal and they are ba-ack like Arnie with sunglasses.

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  45. wow - I hope you feel better soon and some of what you are describing sounds a bit too familiar - I think I am off to the Dr!

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Thoughts appreciated. Advice welcome. Douche-baggery scoffed at then deleted.