WARNING: THIS POST IS NOT FOR THOSE WITH WEAK STOMACHS!
I had my "procedures" (the pesky endometrial biopsy and endocervical curettage) on Tuesday morning the 19th, and all I can say is: OUCH!
Bear in mind that I've undergone a colposcopy (cervical biopsy) before (not to mention a 30+ hour labor that ended in a C-section) and found that to be fairly uncomfortable. This, however, went well beyond just "uncomfortable."
It felt as though someone was stabbing my cervix and uterus with a very long, sharp knife. Repeatedly. And it made me cry.
So, in other words, it wasn't much fun.
God bless my mom for coming to the appointment with me - and actually staying in the room with me - because I don't know how I'd have made it through all of that alone. Heck, I don't know how SHE managed to make it through and she wasn't even the one on the table! My poor mom... I think I may have crushed some of the bones in her 57-year-old hand from squeezing so hard. :( (Sorry, Mom!!)
(SIDE NOTE: By the way, Super Man - had he come with me - would've passed out during the worst of it FOR SURE. God bless the man, he's one of the sweetest, most compassionate, strongest and manliest men I know, but he simply cannot take the messier medical stuff of life. And he's unfortunately saddled with a wife who can't seem to get away from messy medical stuff these days. He wants to be there for me, and he tries really hard, but he just can't do it. He passed out when I was in the recovery room after my colonoscopy last November just from listening to the gastroenterologist talking about how everything went - even though it all went fine - and he also passed out during our first childbirth prep class when Super Boy was born - even though he'd already done it all once before, including observing his daughter being born vaginally. Seriously. The poor guy...)
You'd THINK they'd use some sort of local anesthetic - but no. You'd also think that maybe they'd slip me a hardcore painkiller beforehand to take the edge off. But no. To my NP's defense, she did "recommend" that I take some ibuprofen (to which, sadly, I'm allergic) or Tylenol. Unfortunately, that barely touched the pain.
The only saving grace is that the procedures were done mercifully quickly, so the stabbing only lasted for a few minutes. Sure, they were among the longest minutes of my life, but really it didn't take very long at all.
Horrifying pain aside, the NP said that things looked good to her just eyeballing everything, and she assured me that if we were talking scary cancer, she'd most likely be able to see some abnormality. It was also reassuring to her that I didn't bleed very much despite the repeated stabbing, especially since I was also at the tail-end of my period.
And - aaaaaamen - there was also a small upside to the situation: Apparently, we've learned that I have a "very tight cervix." (Sounds sorta kinky, yes. But it's actually not. Really, it's not. Trust me.)
In fact, it might explain why Super Man and I have had ZERO success trying to conceive another Super Baby these past two-and-a-half years. The NP had to really put some muscle into getting the long scary instruments past my cervix and into my uterus for the endometrial biopsy, and both she and I felt when my cervix finally gave way, much to our mutual surprise. She feels that her rough manhandling of my cervix might be just the thing my poor uterus needed to finally get pregnant, since my cervix was so crazy-tight that she doesn't think Super Man's swimmers were making any headway on their journey to The Promised Land all this time.
I sure hope she's right. That internal massacring I endured has to result in SOMETHING good, as far as I'm concerned.
Alright, now, for all of you who will one day have to undergo an endometrial biopsy, PLEASE NOTE that unless you have a ridiculously tight cervix like your old pal Super Woman does, it apparently isn't supposed to hurt that bad. In fact, my NP was telling me that with the new tests that have come out, endometrial biopsies can be virtually painless. This was not my experience, but again, I've got the crazy-tight cervix and you, you lucky girls, may have normal, somewhat flexible cervixes!
If you're not sure which you have, let's just assume you have a flexible cervix, okay? You won't know otherwise until the rubber hits the road anyway, so there's not much sense in worrying about it. :)
I also want to mention that while I was physically and emotionally exhausted for the duration of the day Tuesday, and I experienced intermittent cramping similar to the worst days of my period along with some spotting for the past two days, I feel like I'm at about 99% today. So, that was pretty much it. It wasn't pleasant by any means, but it was done and over with quickly.
The other upside to the new test is that labs are supposedly able to process them faster. And, in my experience, that seems to be true: I got my results this morning! And I'm VERY pleased to report that they were normal and benign. So I don't have cancer.
I don't have cancer.
Can I tell you how great it feels to say that? I've been dreading that, dwelling over the possibility of that, anguishing over it for the past few days, and now I can be done and move past it.
The bottom line is that my cells are unique, unusual, weird. But - pathologically, at least - they're still within the realm of normal. And I couldn't be happier about it.
For those of you who have yet to go through these procedures, my thoughts and prayers are with you. If you take away nothing else from this post, at least take these three things:
1) Take some pain medication (OTC, unless your doctor will prescribe something for you) before the procedures to help offset any pain you might experience. Remember, you may not feel much, if anything.
2) Try not to worry. I know it's easier said than done. (And I'll admit that I never take my own advice.) But I also pay the price for all that worrying in the form of no sleep and stress headaches and stomachaches. Not worth the trouble, believe me! You need your energy focused on positive, strong, healthy thoughts. Chances are, everything is going to be just fine. :)
3) Remember that you're NOT alone. Even if you can find no one else close to you in this situation, you've got me. And I'm here for you.
Hugs and kisses to all of you who've read about my situation, whether you commented or not. The more we share and open up about the things that happen in our lives, the more we can help each other through them, so please don't hesitate to comment on my blog, on this or any other post. We're all in this together!