Pain! So much pain!

When I woke up from anesthesia I was confused and panicky but not in pain. Once I figured out where I was, things were mostly fine. My pain was a 3, and I felt mostly fine. All the nurses were like, “if you’re this good now, you’ll have an easy recovery!”

So I went home.

Somewhere in the literature for my surgery is a small blurb on the 12-72 hours after surgery when your bowels “turn back on.” It’s very crampy and painful and drugs don’t make it better. You just gotta wait it out. At no point did anyone make sure I was aware of this…

So when my pain suddenly skyrocketed, I panicked. All I could do was pace and focus on breathing, because I do this thing where I hold my breath when I’m in pain. I paced until my legs hurt, at which point I then lie squirming in bed. It was only after a frantic phone call to a nurse line that we got me comfortable. And by comfortable, I mean unconscious. Later Chris came by and napped with me.

Day 1 and 2 post op were awful….

It’s day 3 now, and I hurt… I feel like I’ve been kicked in the stomach… and generally beat up, but it’s so much better than the past 2 days…

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Surgery Day!

3am – Alarm went off… spent the next 30 minutes drinking apple juice and taking the meds I was allowed to take today.

330am – Took shower with terrible antimicrobial soap they gave me at the pre-op appointments. I got it nowhere close to my eyes, but the fumes coming off of it were pure alcohol. So burny. It also left my skin feeling like plastic, very dry, and unpleasant. I longed for LOTION BUKKAKE. All over my life.

430am – Head to hospital for 530 check in. Mom was obviously nervous. Her driving showed it pretty evidently. Also, it was dark, and she has mild night blindness, so the drive to the hospital was NOT great. And we got there super early, so we had to wait for 30 minutes before the doors actually opened. But her being SO nervous meant my mom-friend instincts kicked in and I was incapable of being nervous for myself. Handy personality quirk.

6am – I had to strip down and pre-op started. I was kind of really uncomfortable with so many talking to me while I was wearing neither pants or panties, but I was soon distracted by the pre-op process. They put this GIANT needle in my arm to take blood, and then they push this button on the device and the needle pops out, but leaves flexible plastic tubing in my arm for administering fluids, drugs, and antibiotics during surgery. It was pretty cool, tbh. During this time I also met all my doctors. They all seemed very nice. I also got a shot of heprin for blood clots in the back of my arm… the needle didn’t hurt, but FUCK that burned. Not looking forward to administering my blood clot shots once a day for the next two weeks…. @_@

730am – They wheeled me into the OR. The sedation meds weren’t really taking effect on the way in, but I was still pretty calm all things considered. They adjusted the IV and I felt them before the anesthesia actually started, though. First time I remember seeing the OR in spite of this being the fourth surgery of my life. It was less terrifying to me than I thought it would be. Nice and cold, though. I love a good cold room. Then they said they were administering the knock out drugs, and I was out in like 20 seconds.

930am – Came to in recovery and panicked. I didn’t feel pain or anything, but waking up with people in your face asking you questions is jarring. I asked the time and when I could see my mom. I guess I was on the brink of tears, cuz the 68 year old recovery specialist was concerned I was in pain. Really, my pain was like a 3. She gave me just a little pain medication, which probably also helped me calm down. Once I got them to sit me upright, though, I started to feel better. I was only in the phase 1 recovery room for about an hour. I got real coherent and chatty pretty fast. I was also PARCHED so I sucked down ice chips and water like a pro, even though my throat hurt from the breathing tube, and still hurts right now, actually. When the recovery specialist said she was gonna go talk to my mom, I asked her to tell her my Pulse Ox, because I was pulling 98%. Many a time we’ve had problems in this family with people being unable to keep their pulse ox up, so I thought it would be the best way to reassure her I was doing well. Shortly after, I asked and was allowed to go to the bathroom and put my clothes on, which… nothing makes you feel better than wearing pants… Swear to god.

11am – Taken out to recovery stage 2, which is essentially just a holding room where Mom sat with me till they got my discharge papers ready. Everyone was SUPER impressed with my recovery. I wasn’t in pain, didn’t ask for medication, and was pretty chatty and overall happy. They predicted this meant I would have a pretty easy recovery, but warned me I’d prolly feel like someone beat me up tomorrow… looking forward to that!

1215pm – Released to go home.

1pm – Mom picked me up some Chik-fil-A for lunch and helped me get inside and get the dogs outside. Then, she left me to eat and get some rest. They put this thing behind my ear for nausea that’s good for 3 days, and it causes WICKED dry mouth. The fries went down great. The nuggets did okay. I killed two sweet teas trying to eat my sandwich, though, because I didn’t have enough saliva to breakdown the bread. Lol. After that, I went up to bed and napped on and off for most of the afternoon. I also listened to a book.

5pm – Chris came over. He’d texted me all morning, intentionally getting up even earlier than usual to reassure me everything would be fine. When he showed up his face was nothing but concern, though. He was actually really worried and was really glad I seemed to be doing mostly okay. We snuggled, and chatted, and watched The Orville. Then he had to go home since he’s got Addi this weekend. He setup a TV and a Wii U in her room, though, so she didn’t mind him coming over for a little bit. He promised to come back tomorrow, and the next day, and he’s spending all day Monday with me. I feel very loved.

630pm – Fed dogs and grabbed some dinner. It’s now 814pm, and I’m still working on dinner because it’s hard to swallow…. but I feel mostly okay.

OTHER NOTES:

  • The girl next to me in recovery was NOT doing very well. They did some kind of investigative surgery on her uterus for endometriosis and some other things I don’t remember the name of. She was actively crying and in a lot more than me. I hope she does well and gets relief for her problems. She seems like a sweet girl.
  • My surgeon came in to talk to me post-op and told me that in spite of being told I probably had endometriosis and poly-cystic ovaries since I was 12, there were no signs of either. This has made me very curious as to what the fuck caused my periods to be SO BAD. All the material, except my ovaries that I got to keep, was sent to pathology, though. Maybe they’ll be able to tell me what was up, as well as whether we got it out before it turned into cancer.
  • My surgeon showed my mom pictures of my insides. She was grossed out. I see this as payback for when she had her uterus cauterized when I was like 15, and her doc came out and this smol Asian woman named Doctor Sun showed me her burned and blackened uterus… and then went “See! You came out of there!” With a thick Asian accent… it was hilarious later, but freaked me out at the time. I derive pleasure from knowing mom felt similarly. Lol.
  • Chris signed divorce papers! I guess his ex got everything together after she filed their taxes, and he’ll be a free man, soon. I am very excited about it, especially with plans to move him in come May. I’m nervous what my hairdresser will say, since she’s already asked if I’d marry him… so now I feel like she’s gonna badger me to marry him forever now. Lol.
  • Both mom and I have been running off anxiety this week, and it shows. We both felt exhausted on the way back from the hospital, and we predict we’ll be out like a light tonight.

Overall, today was less epic than I thought it would be. If someone told me, right now, that I’d be going back to work Monday, I’d ask to wait till Wednesday. As it is, I’m off for two weeks! So, I plan on doing a lot of reading and gaming and hoping that the pain continues to be minor. I have no regrets now that it’s over.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK
Me: “So, are you sad I won’t even be having an oops baby now?”
Mom: “No, I’m glad you’re not gonna die. If you want a kid later, we’ll buy you one.”

I love my mom, and her borderline rude but in a caring kind of way bluntness.

My Colposcopy With NP Slaughter

So back in October, I went in for a well woman exam, because I promised my doctor that I would do it. I hate well woman exams. I find them gross and somehow degrading. Plus, historically I’m always face to face with some nurse that insists she need to know the total number of people I’ve slept with ever, which is an answer I cannot provide. Kaiser doesn’t seem to care who I have slept with, though. I dunno how I feel about that, really… cuz they should care a LITTLE… but I digress. I hate well woman exams for a number of reasons, but the top reason I hate well woman exams is because I always, ALWAYS, bounce the pap smear.

Now, if you’re unfamiliar with a pap smear, lemme give you the quick and dirty summary of events. They jam a spreader (speculum) in you, which my doc says they can’t use lube with because it taints the specimen, and crank your vag open, and then they use this brush to scrape cells off the cervix and put it in a vial, and then some lab technician looks at it to see if your cells look normal or fucked up. If they’re fucked up, you might have cancer. Now, that might not sound super awful to you, either because you don’t have a cervix or because your pap has never hurt you, but for some of us this feels like someone took tweezers, grabbed some tissue inside our lower abdomen and tore it off like a piece of monkey bread. So… never really enjoyed the process. 

I’ve been getting pap smears since I was 12, because my reproductive organs have been trying to kill me since I was 12. Doctors are always horrified to hear this, since they don’t recommend paps until you’re 21 these days, but when you have fucked up organs you have fucked up organs, man. This means I know the drill. I know I’m going to fail. I know they’re going to repap. I know I’m going to get a coloscopy after that. It’s how it’s been for the better part of the past 18 years of my life, except the 3 years I took off because I was god damn sick of it. So, I wasn’t surprised when I bounced my pap. I was surprised we jumped straight to the colposcopy, though. 

So today was my colposcopy, but yesterday I freaked out about it. Why? Because we’re dealing with the C-word… not cunt… well… kind of cunt… but Cancer. I meant cancer. You see, everyone in my (maternal) family gets cancer. My grandma. My grandad. My great aunt. My cousins. My great grandparents. Just everyone. We’re all gonna get cancer. So I was freaking out yesterday because I don’t want to get cancer and die. Last time someone told me they thought I had cancer I freaked out for a whole weekend and cleaned my whole house and started dividing up my things to leave to people… like I was just prepping to die in the next month. It was insanity. You’d think I’d develop a coping mechanism. You would be correct.

When I freak out about something that makes me think I might die, I do this thing where I obsess over something completely unrelated, and set in the future. Yesterday I decided I wanted to buy a new house. I’m not in a position to buy a new house, but that’s what I decided to obsess over so I didn’t have to think about dying. I picked the house (the Polygon is up for sale still) and started trying to figure out how I’d buy it and who I could move in with me. So I was running numbers and figuring the best rate we could maybe get on Mom’s credit, since mine is still low, and asking Chris if he’d wanna move in (which was the point when someone should have asked if I felt okay). And then the crying started. I just couldn’t get far enough into this obsession to block out the idea that I was going to have someone tell me if I had cancer or not….

Joke’s on me, cuz I still don’t know.

So after a terrible day and evening of freaking the fuck out over this procedure, I go from denial to angry numbness. I was just mad when I woke up this morning. I got up and I just didn’t care. I dared god to give me cancer because I am just sick of dealing with this infinite problem hanging over my head. Chris made sure he was up in time for me to panic text him through my appointment… and that’s what I did. I snapped him through the rude reception nurse and the nurse assistant taking my vitals and the long wait in the waiting room because they were behind. It was all nonsense, and being numb I wasn’t even scared anymore. I was just angry this was eating up my day… but I don’t know what would have distracted me without him. 

The BucketEven when they took me back to the procedure room, I had a good fifteen minutes to dick around before I had to strip from the waist down or anyone came in. Now, I’m an adult, and I know you shouldn’t dick around with medical equipment… but I whipped out my Snapchat and took snaps of me investigating EVERYTHING including a suspicious bucket that I could not devise the purpose of. I always marvel at how in spite of our medical progress an examination room and its equipment still looks like the American government could dissect and analyze an alien there. 

When NP Slaughter (my nurse practitioner was named Slaughter… classic) came in, I was ready and looked very calm, even though on the inside I was burning with unbridled, frenzied rage, the likes of which I don’t even have a word for. Like, I was so irate that I was giggly. You ever been so angry you laugh? You ever been so angry at GOD and your cervix that you laugh? I have. Anyways, NP Slaughter, brought the vitals nurse to assist, as well as a Czech NP from another department who was learning how things are done in Gynecology. (I know she was Czech because we were talking about schools at one point and she went, “I went to communist Czech school…”) She went over what would happen, and who was in the room. I’d done a colposcopy before, so I wasn’t that concerned. 

A colposcopy is a lot like a pap smear, in the sense that someone is going to jam a speculum into your vag and crank you open. I mean, if you’ve been cranked open once, you’ve been cranked open a million times. Where it differs is that instead of taking tissue samples, they coat the cervix in vinegar and iodine and then stare deep into your cervix to see what it tells them. Why? Because cancer cells absorb vinegar faster than normal cells. The iodine helps you see what’s going on, as well as sterilizing the area. So, they swab me up, and NP Slaughter is staring deep into my womb, when NP Slaughter, the nicest NP I’ve ever met in my life, asks if the Czech NP can view my cervix for educational purposes. I agreed on the grounds that I could take a snap of all of them peering into my vagina. They thought I was kidding, but I definitely took and have that picture.

I used Snapchat to distract me from most of the procedure. I have a deep set cervix and a narrow pelvic bone opening… Meaning getting the speculum jammed that deep in there hurts, and cranking me open hurts. The whole fucking thing hurts. They do their best, but you can’t really prevent most of it. So they’re looking around and identify the probably problem area, and that’s when something happened that’s never happened to me in a colposcopy before. She took biopsies. I know that in reality it was like a 10 minute procedure, but it felt like she was in there digging out tissue forever. It hurt. It felt like I was being stabbed deep inside myself. It’s a Lovecraftian kind of pain; I would not have flinched if suddenly a door to another dimension had opened inside me and I was swallowed up into eternal pain or something. 

In the past, my doctor has looked at my cervix and told me I’m fine before sending me on my way. This time I was told we’ll know if I have cancer in 5-7 days and sent on my way in pain. I was told that I’d probably bleed from the biopsy for about 7 days, and that the stuff they use to help stop the bleeding was also gonna come out and look like coffee grounds. It was revolting to hear… later it would be worse to see…  I made it to my car before I broke down crying in pain. I called my mom and told her about the biopsy and how much it hurt. She said to take my time coming back to work, maybe get lunch, but I just didn’t even feel like playing hookie for a few hours to recoup. I made it back to work, but as the pain increased I realized I couldn’t stay at work. It was too painful. So, since I drove both mothership and I to work… I called Chris.

This man, my suspiciously supportive, thoughtful man, drove out to my work, picked me up, AND HE BROUGHT COCA COLA FOR ME. Then he let me hold onto his arm the whole way home. He didn’t even blink at coming to get me. To his credit, he’d also offered to go to the appointment with me. If I’d known we were taking biopsies I’d have let him. He took me home and I went to bed with a Percocet. 

So it wasn’t a great day. I might have cancer. I’m in pain. I had to miss work. My coworker and friend who took me to Vegas, Cat, has noticed I’ve been to the doc a lot recently. She’s now worried I’m dying, and going home in visible pain today did not help that. But… I have Chris… and he’s great. I love him.


In other news, my meds have changed again. I felt okay on 20 mg Cymbalta and 1/2 a Wellbutrin, so we decided not to get rid of the Wellbutrin. With that, I’m now on Ritalin. As my doc put it, I’m the dosage for an 8 year old. So it may or may not do anything. I FEEL like it’s doing something, but I can’t be sure yet. 

It Still Hurts

My face still hurts… but so does my pride.
My eyebrow hurts every time I move it, and my pride hurts every time I think about getting stood up.

I think I figured both out, though.
I think I split the muscle in my eyebrow under the skin. Usually when you do that, there’s a cut that has to be stitched up. Since I didn’t hit anything sharp enough to split my skin, I think I just bashed the muscle too hard, and that’s why it’s still all tender and painy…
As for the stand up…
It’s been bugging me since Saturday evening at 1130pm as to why being stood up hurts. I’m AroAce… I don’t really do romance, and I don’t care for sex, but I’m still a human being. I still got rejected, as a person. Someone still decided that I wasn’t even worth notifying that they wouldn’t be showing up. That’s shitty. That’s shitty no matter who you are or the circumstance. It’s the destruction of expectation. It hurts.

I’ve determined that I’d like to find a partner, one day, in spite of being AroAce. I don’t know HOW I will find one that meets my requirements list, but surely it could happen. If everyone on Doomsday Preppers and My 600 Lb Life can find spouses, surely I can, too. Although, I’ve been told that my concept of an ideal relationship is what normal people get out of a best friend. Someone to go out with. Someone to stay in with. Someone that I just enjoy being around. It makes me wonder what people are getting out of their romantic relationships, then… I mean if you can find that in a best friend, why date? I know there’s the sex aspect, but I know aces that think I’m falling short of a relationship mark, too… so… it’s a mystery.

As an aro, I don’t guess I’ll ever understand a regular relationship. But… that’s fine.
It’s a hell of a time to be alive. People are starting families without getting married, getting married with no intention of starting a family, gays can marry (in a number of states)… and essentially you can build a relationship to meet whatever needs you want. I’d like a companion. I’m willing to have sex with them, if they meet the rest of my criterion… but that’s part of the building. And, for the first time in the past few months, I genuinely feel optimistic about my potential future.

So I bashed my face into a bookcase…

This weekend was weird.

Friday night, for whatever reason, I was hellbent on getting drunk. It’s been an exhausting week, what with our title clerk leaving and me having to learn her job, so I guess I was just feeling the stress. But, after $52 worth of vodka, I found someone interesting.

Maybe it was the vodka. Maybe I just liked his taste in karaoke choices. I dunno, but he was interesting.

So we chatted for a bit. Then we made out for a bit. Then he followed me home, and walked me inside.

So I went to let Kira out of her kennel, and tripped over Kyrie and bashed my face into a bookcase. It was not graceful and I ended up laying face down on the floor until this guy asked if I was ok. If he hadn’t asked, I would have probably woken up on the floor in the morning. I was drunk, seeing stars, and flirting with unconsciousness. His voice, however, reminded me of his presence. So I jumped up and ignored my throbbing head.

He was nice. He was concerned. He helped me upstairs to bed, and we made out and he staid the night. It wasn’t romantic, or sexy, or anything, but it was really nice. I hadn’t been close with someone in over a year. When he left in the morning, he left his hat.

We had plans that evening for a show. Just my friends playing shitty 90s covers. It’s fun. We laugh. The guys talk to me during their breaks. I thought it would be fun since this guy was also in a band. He’d agreed to pick me up at 820, because I told him 830 and like me, he thought that being early is better. I liked that about him. Around five he was texting me about his band practice. It was going to run late… So I agreed to meet him at the show.

That was the last I heard of him. He never showed up.

Now, he wasn’t the most attractive man, ever. He was pudgy, with a baby face, and the potential for neck beard. He didn’t make me question my asexuality. I didn’t even think I wanted to date him or something, and I’m pretty sure that I’m aromantic, anyway. Still, being stood up, for the second time in my life, is upsetting. It’s only recently that this has started happening to me and both times I kind of wanted to die over it.

So if you don’t want to fuck someone, and you don’t want to date them, but you’re still upset and hurt they stood you up…, what are you feeling?

I HAVE NO MOTHERFUCKING IDEA. But whatever it is, it’s fucking awful.