Thursday, November 19, 2009

lighter

I meant to post the evening of my surgery to let you all know how it went, but the day got away from me, and then I had a few rough days after that, so I'm just now getting to it. My apologies!

Tuesday morning, I woke up after an okay night's sleep feeling fairly calm, but I could sense the jitters lying in wait beneath the surface. So, I did what I always do to take my mind off things: I cleaned.

Between my cleaning rampages of Monday and Tuesday, my house is looking pretty good.

I cleaned right up until my mom got to my house, around 11:30am. Then, while she made herself lunch (I couldn't eat - I was banned from food after midnight Monday - so I couldn't bear the lure of yummy food), I went up and took a long, hot shower. The upside was that I didn't really have to do much to "get ready" after my shower; I wasn't allowed to wear make-up - or jewelry, or nail polish on my fingernails - for the surgery, so I just dried my hair, got dressed and was done in record time.

That left me just enough time to let Super Dog out one last time, check email and Facebook one last time, throw a few post-surgery must-haves into my bag, and head out the door to the surgery center.

Thankfully, my wait at the surgery center was mercifully short, because I could really feel the anxiety setting in once we arrived. They shuttled me into pre-op, I got into my gown and booties, and they hooked me up to an IV in short order. My anesthesiologist, a vivacious and funny woman, then came in and introduced herself.

She was awesome. She asked me all the necessary questions, after which I somewhat sheepishly shared with her my concerns about getting nauseous or vomiting from the anesthesia. She talked to me about the special "cocktail" of meds she could use to minimize the potential for nausea and vomiting as much as possible. Needless to say, I was totally on board - and in love with her - by the time that conversation ended.

Interestingly enough, I went into that day thinking I would want to remain awake for the procedure (similar to the level of anesthesia I had for my colonoscopy, where I was awake and talking, but feeling no pain or discomfort and a little bit loopy), but after talking to the anesthesiologist, I realized that I was probably better off letting her knock me out. The cocktail of drugs she was talking about using on me couldn't be used if I wanted to remain awake, and using the more standard drugs to keep me more awake would increase my odds of nausea and vomiting. Also, because the procedure to remove fibroids and polyps is more... physical than a colonoscopy, being more awake for this procedure would have also meant that I'd be likely to feel more, and that might have made me feel nauseous, too. Bottom line? Best to be asleep!

Once all the formalities were taken care of, the anesthesiologist gave me a little Versed to mellow me out (oh, how I love thee, sweet Versed!). It seemed like just minutes later they were wheeling me into the operating room. I remember boosting myself from the gurney over to the operating table, and I remember someone removing my glasses. After that - nada. I was o-u-t!

Next thing I knew, I heard someone say my name. I felt like I had taken a SUPER long and restful nap and was in the middle of a very bizarre dream when I suddenly heard my name. I opened my eyes; I was being wheeled out of the OR and into recovery.

I asked the recovery nurses how things went, and they said everything went very well - no complications, no problems. This was, of course, great news.

But for some reason, it struck me as incredibly funny.

I started giggling. I couldn't stop at giggling. Next thing I knew, I was full-on belly laughing.

Clearly it was a side effect of the anesthesia wearing off!

The nurses left me for a few moments, during which time I managed to convince myself that the single funky and beautiful piece of art on the wall was actually several matching pieces of beautiful art. I was actually surprised later when I realized that it was, in fact, only one piece of art. Like I said, the anesthesia had definitely done a number on me!

My mom was led into the recovery room, where she got an enormous kick out of my post-surgical silliness. I kept repeating the same questions, talking about the same things, giggling. In short, I think it reminded her of when I was four or five years old. Good times.

At some point, my doctor came in and talked to me about the surgery. He said he did see the fibroid and polyp and was able to remove both without any issues. He said they looked fine visually, but would still have to go to pathology to be checked, just to be safe.

By this time, my giggles were subsiding, and I remember feeling an enormous sense of relief. I survived the surgery, and all went well. Amen!!

As the anesthesia wore off, I realized that I felt really quite well. No pain, no nausea, and I was more alert than I expected to be. I drank water, drank apple juice, got up to use the bathroom, got dressed, and was ready to go home within about an hour.

Once I got home, I felt almost completely like myself. I say almost because the one thing I noticed that evening was that I had some pain when I peed. Not much bleeding though, and just a little bit of very minor cramping, not even enough to take Tylenol. All in all, not too shabby.

I took it easy, of course - ate a little chicken noodle soup and had some ginger ale from the comfort of the couch, watched some t.v. for an hour or so, and then played Monopoly City with Super Man, Super Boy, and my Super Mom for a few hours. When bedtime rolled around, I was still wide awake. The anesthesia left me so rested that I didn't feel at all tired that night, unfortunately. I read until 1:30am and then forced myself to fall asleep.

I slept poorly Tuesday night, probably because I wasn't at all tired when I finally fell asleep. It didn't help that Super Boy ended up sleepwalking in the middle of the night, either!

Despite a poor night's sleep, yesterday started off with me feeling fairly energetic and well overall. I took Super Boy to school, stopped for a coffee at Starbucks, came home and visited with my Super Mom for a few hours. When the surgery center called midday yesterday to see how I was feeling, I mentioned that I felt great other than the pain when I was experiencing during urination. I assumed that might be normal, considering that the bladder sits right in front of the uterus/cervix, and that area was obviously traumatized during surgery. Turns out, however, that it might actually be a bladder infection from the catheterization I had during surgery (which I didn't know I'd had - it was done, and removed, all while I was under anesthesia), so they said that if I still felt the pain today, to call my doctor's office and let them know.

My mom left around lunchtime because I was feeling pretty well. But as the day went on, I found myself feeling really tired, almost like I was coming down with something. After I picked Super Boy up from school in the afternoon, we came home and I laid down and fell asleep for two hours. When I woke up, I felt even worse. I was supposed to go to the book fair at Super Boy's school with Super Boy and Super Man last night, but I figured I should probably stay home and take it easy.

I called the doctor's office this morning to let them know that I was still having pain when I urinate, and they wanted me to stop in to the lab to give a urine sample, to be safe. I should hear about that in the morning. (Update 11/24/09: Did hear from the doctor on Friday; was definitely a bladder infection. Hooray! So, I'm on day 5 of an antibiotic now. Amen.)

So, aside from the unexpected bladder infection, the whole thing went FAR better than I imagined it would. I say this facetiously, but I feel lighter since the surgery. Knowing that it's behind me, that the fibroid and polyp are out and that we can move ahead with IUI in December has just lifted a huge psychological burden off my mind. I feel optimistic and hopeful again, knowing that I'm physically primed for everything to come together for another baby.

I also feel very happy and confident in my decision to switch to my current doctor at the Reproductive Medicine office. He did a great job with my surgery, has been honest and thorough in explaining things to me throughout the process, and he's hopeful that we will achieve the pregnancy we so badly want. I'm glad I trusted my gut and switched to him.

So, now we move on to bigger and better things! I will meet with my Super Doctor again on 12/1 for a post-op check-up and to set the schedule for IUI in December. I will of course update again then. Thank you for all thoughts and prayers you've sent along the way, and please keep your fingers crossed that things continue to go as well as we move forward!

With love and hope,
SW

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