Sunday, August 18, 2013

Surgery, I'm not sure how I feel about that...

Now that I finally have some definite answers to things I guess it's time that I address the issue at hand. I have to have surgery and I'm not sure how I feel about it. August has just not been my month and it doesn't look like things are going to be getting any easier for me any time soon. Let me start at the beginning...

When we moved to Georgia in February I sought out an OBGYN. I found one relatively close by and I made an appointment to have my yearly check and to talk about birth control options for me other than the pill (which I kept forgetting to take). She is a wonderful woman and I decided to get a Mirena IUD (I've had one before and I liked it). Well at the post insertion check they do an ultrasound to make sure that the IUD is in place correctly and that everything looks ok with it. When they did my ultrasound in May they discovered that I had a small mass on my ovary. The doctor wasn't concerned right away and she scheduled me for a follow up appointment in August to check the mass again. Well I had that appointment this week and the mass has gotten bigger (double in size) and it's darkened up so it's almost completely solid now. Knowing that every woman from my mom's side of the family has died of cancer I wasn't taking any chances and I asked if I could have it removed. The doctor agreed that this was the best choice of action because if it's growing it definitely doesn't need to be in there. I made the arrangements to have my surgery done on September 13th and all of my pre-op paperwork is scheduled for September 10th. This was the first available date that she had to perform the surgery. She is hoping to be able to do it laparoscopically and not have to make an actual incision in my bikini area. However if she goes in laparoscopically and the mass is complex and cannot be removed easily she will have to back out and make the larger incision to guarantee removal. There is also a chance that my ovary will have to come out as well if the mass is attached to it and cannot be separated. I told her to do what she has to do in order to remove this from me period.

You know it's funny I'm sitting in her office on Friday afternoon and at first I felt like someone awaiting their sentencing for prison. The cold grey examine room was full of dread and uncomfortable feelings for me that day. I knew what was coming, I knew that surgery was the only option I was going to allow her to give to me, yet I felt like I was in someone else's life for that brief period of time. As we discussed things and I talked with the scheduling nurse I was calm and very matter of fact about it all. After I left the office I had errands to run and I managed those without even shedding a tear. Then I got home and fell apart.

I've never had a major surgery, I've never had to be cut open for anything. If this can all be done laparoscopically then the recovery time from it will only be about a week she said as long as I give myself a few days afterwards to just rest and recoup. The recovery period if she has to make a larger incision will be a little longer but not much. My doctor will then have to monitor me to make sure that more cysts/masses do not appear over the next few months. She is also planning on testing the mass for cancer once it has been removed.

I can spit out the medical terminology and sound very intelligent when I talk about things like this. However when I think about how I'm truly feeling inside, that's when I have a issue. I'm terrified. I try to make jokes like calling it "Ted the tumor" or try not to think about it at all. I'm submerging myself into whatever I can to pass the time and not allow myself to seriously think about it. However, in the long run that is not going to help me at all and I know that is simple avoidance behavior. I don't want to be another family statistic. I don't want to have the doctor say well, you have ovarian cancer so now we need to talk about treatment. I'm seriously hoping it's just a freak accident that I got this crazy mass and that the C word isn't involved with it at all. Women in my family don't survive having cancer and the possibility that this might be the beginning stages of it do not sit well with me at all.

Yes, this is causing me physical pain. All the problems I've been having with my back are more than likely related to this mass. My horrible mood swings and extreme depression is probably also related to this as well as my fatigue, digestive issues and bloating. Who would have thought that a small mass would cause some many problems? I am very stressed out at this point because this could not have happened at a worse time. Finances are tight already with my son's medication being over $600 every three months. With me not having been working since we moved I'm not bringing in any income to throw towards my surgery. My husband is feeling like he doesn't make enough money to take care of me now and that's not true at all. This wasn't something we could have planned for or even knew was coming. So now we have to find ways to make all the finances work in order to have the surgery done when it needs to be done because I don't want to have to postpone it and allow "Ted" to get bigger and become more complicated. I've got so much going through my head, I don't feel good, I'm tired, I'm scared and this all just totally sucks!

The only thing positive that has come of this is even though I haven't been able to exercise regularly for many weeks now, I'm not gaining any weight. I've been able to maintain my current weight with just my diet and the little bits of walking and exercise that I can manage. Hopefully after the surgery and recovery I will be able to get back on track and start losing weight again. I don't have far to go maybe only around 30lbs or so. I'm trying to stay positive but there are some days when I just want to give in the the pity party and feel crappy because this situation wouldn't really fill anyone with a motivational happy light. I will eventually need to accept it for what it is and work through it, which I'm working on currently, but with no one to talk to that understands or has been there done that, it feels very much like I'm just whining and I need to get over it.

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