I love it (NOT) on a TV show when someone is asked a question, usually about a relationship, and the person responds: “it’s complicated.” It seems like such a cop-out answer.
But today, that’s kind of how I feel; so to the question “Are you ready for your surgery and have you made a decision about your remaining ovary?”, I have two answers. If you are short on time or do not like details, read answer “numero uno”. If you like details and have a few minutes, read answer “numero dos”!
Answer #1 – KISS (Keep It Short & Simple)
It’s complicated, but yes and yes. Surgery is a week from Monday (tomorrow), on December 19th and I’m preparing for it. We have decided to go ahead and leave the ovary in.
Answer #2 – (Hold on to your hats, cuz here comes a boatload of information!)
Surgery is in about a week and I’m trying to prepare for it even as I continue to try catching up from the last one! I’m trying to get things done before the surgery, get things set up for the week of and the week after my surgery and following. I’ll be sleeping and resting a lot after the 19th, so I want to plan as much as I can to lighten the burden on Jeremy’s shoulders’ for those few weeks. Thankfully we will have family in town from December 14th to the end of the year, so that will be a blessing and very helpful.
This past Monday, we met with the OBGYN doctor who specializes in endometriosis – she was wonderful to talk with, listened carefully and gave thoughtful advice. To be honest, Jeremy and I went into this meeting planning on making the choice to have the remaining ovary removed during surgery. We left still somewhat desiring to have it removed, but realizing it probably wouldn’t be best. I won’t go into details, but ultimately it came down to choosing to follow the expert’s advice, especially since she deals with endo all the time. With the new information we received, the benefit/risk factors were tipping the scales in favor of leaving the ovary in.
Thursday, we met with the Digestive Health surgeon for pre-op. He’s confident there shouldn’t be a problem with the reattachment, but did warn us of a few possible scenarios, one of which involves an ileostomy (another “bag” system, this time in the small intestine) to allow the rectum/colon reattachment to heal properly. We are praying I won’t need that! The prep information I was given was a bit overwhelming, but doable (as long as I read it again) . . . I guess I didn’t realize how much preparation goes into getting ready for surgery – after all, the last time was emergency, so no time for that!
On Thursday I also started having cramping/spasms again like I had for years before surgery. At first I was discouraged about this, but then it dawned on me that it was a good thing because it alerted me that I probably still have deposits of endo throughout my abdomen. I sent a message about it to the OBGYN endo specialist. I also talked about it on Friday at my appointment with the OBGYN oncology surgeon that operated on me. He agreed to discuss it with the surgeon as well as with the OBGYN doctor to see if she could come check me for endo on the day of surgery and to blast/burn any endo she finds. This should help minimize pain and endo growth for at least a few years, if not many! I’m waiting to hear final confirmation, but I’m praying that this can happen.
Well, this post is long enough already, but I want to end it with some praises and prayer requests:
- We were very impressed with the attentiveness and professionalism of the endo OBGYN doctor, and felt like she gave us good advice that we should follow (we had prayed specifically for clear and direct advice).
- I had pain/cramping/spasms (and how is that a praise?). This spurred me to talk to the doctors/surgeons about them and to ask them to check for endo while I am on the operating table. Because of the realization that more endo was probably still left behind, I am better able to advocate for myself. All the doctors were very responsive to my concerns and questions.
- Although the original OBGYN surgeon will not be in town on the day of my surgery, my new endo OBGYN doctor/surgeon will be in clinic at the hospital. This is huge because otherwise my surgery might have had to be postponed (for the endo part).
- Please pray that I will be able to plan and prepare well for the surgery, and not get all stressed out about everything I need to do. It’s not necessarily that it is too much, but more that I am having a hard time getting my brain around it all to organize and prepare. I’m easily distracted anyway, but now it seems worse! 🙂
- Please pray it will be confirmed that the OBGYN will be able to come and check for endo, and that God would guide her to find it all and blast it!
- Please pray for me not to be anxious about the following: getting sick with flu/cold before surgery, and the recovery after (I now know what to expect)!
- Please pray that the surgery will go better than expected and that I won’t need the ileostomy.
Thank you all for your prayers and for encouraging me along this journey.