I have no problem sharing blogging tips and tricks, tutorials and the like, but I don’t know that I will ever get used to sharing my private life online. As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago when I shared all of the challenges I have had with my health, I really went back and forth trying to decide what if anything I wanted to share. In the end, I posted a bit of my story because I felt like it was the right thing to do.
The time I have spent in the hospital and at home has given me time to reflect on the true spirit of the holiday season and the blessing my involvement with blogging has been. I wanted to post a bit of a happy follow-up and I have prayed that I may have the spirit to share my true feelings with you…
Earlier this month I entered the hospital to have a total abdominal hysterectomy. Though I had several ultrasounds and a CT scan, the images still were not clear enough for the doctors to fully understand what was hidden beneath the surface. It turns out my abdomen was a bit of a crowded place. I had two very large tumors and about 20 smaller tumors that had entered an agressive growth stage on, in and around all of my reproductive organs. By the time I entered surgery my uterus measured the size of a full term pregnancy (sheesh, I feel for those of you who have carried children).
The tumors were putting pressure on many of my internal organs, pushing them every where but where they should have been. To give you an idea, my bladder was located clear up under my rib cage. In addition, the largest of the tumors had developed some rather large veins, which explains my lack of energy and oxygen.
Fortunately, I had a wonderful doctor (if you’re in the Salt Lake area and would like an OB/GYN recommendation, please let me know) and though there were some complications, the surgery went very well. I spent less than a week in the hospital.
I’ve since had all of my staples taken out. In addition, I have received the results of my blood tests and I am happy to tell you that I am cancer free!
Since nothing had spread and all of the organs in question were removed, it’s very unlikely I will have any additional issues. I am at higher risk for other forms of cancer and I will have to be checked periodically, but that is something I can definitely LIVE with.
I continue to remain at home (mostly in bed) recovering from my surgery. I truly underestimated the time it would take me to heal. My doctor said I will start feeling a bit more like myself again by early February, but I am a little stir crazy. I am still taking a lot of medications and sticking to my bed. I hope you will understand if it continues to be a little quiet/slow around here…
Thank heaven for your calls, your comments, emails and the wonderful cards you’ve sent in the mail. I read each and every one of them…Most of all though, thank you for your prayers. Though the constant stream of cards has made the numerous medical bills pouring in more palatable, I believe it’s your prayers that have lifted me up, comforted me and provided me with the strength to get through this rough patch in relatively positive spirits.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your gift to me this holiday season is one I will never be able to repay.
There is just one more thing along this vein that I would like to mention. Please take care of yourselves. As women, we’re so used to taking care of and serving others that sometimes it’s a little hard to take the time to take care of personal needs.
If you feel something may be even a bit “off,” please take the time to visit your doctor. If everything seems okay, make time to have a yearly check up.
Too many times in the last few weeks, I’ve spoken to you and you’ve mentioned that you don’t feel 100%, but you just don’t have time to make a doctor appointment because your family life is so busy. Trust me. Your family needs you healthy more than they need cupcakes and perfectly wrapped gifts or rides to practice.
You’ve mentioned that you don’t want to make a big deal about your issues, because there are others going through so much more. Trust me. No one is going through more than you.
I sincerely believe that God gives us the trials that we can handle. No more, no less. We are given those trials for a reason. Please don’t try to compare your trials or consider them trivial. And, please don’t be afraid to talk about them.
If I’ve learned anything in the last few weeks, it’s that this is a supportive community of women who are ready and prepared to reach out and, if needed, listen.