Sunday, November 27

Day 5

Today was pretty good. After taking a recovery step back, I today. It did make for a very boring day, but hopefully I'll be even more energized and pain free tomorrow.

Today was probably the first day that I didn't notice any residual shoulder pain. I awoke with a headache, but I attribute that to sitting strangely while knitting. I'm sore near the incisions and internally, but nothing severe. I've cut back on medication, and only taken a few ibuprofen at this point.

I'm really posting my experience, because I felt that much of what I found online was terribly scary, or unhelpfully vague and also wasn't very clear about what to expect each day after surgery. I wonder if someone out there Googles "laparoscopic" "surgery" "endometriosis," if they might find these posts and be helped. I hope so.

Day 4

Day four, I expected to be easier and less pain. Instead I took a step back and ended up where I was on day 2. Tomorrow I will not move! No bending over, no reaching. I shouldn't have pushed myself.

I get super super sad at the end of each night. I think partially because of the drugs, partially because of wearyness of my body fighting to be better, partially because of the difficulty being on this path.

I'm also just disappointed that I'm not seeing more evidence of healing. 

Tomorrow and the next day, I will NOT MOVE!  It will be Buffy 24-7. That or Bones.

Friday, November 25

Day 3

Post op day 3 looked a lot like taking it easy - really easy. My sleeping was significantly better - I woke up once during the night. I slept until 7, went back to bed at 8 when I realized I was so tired, got up at 9. stayed up a little and shopped online with hubby (it WAS Black Friday, after all.) Took a nap around 1.  My eyes were still dialated from the patch, but seemed to be significantly better by the afternoon. I only needed Ibuprofen a couple of times during the day.
Movement was significantly smoother today. The incisions looked fine and seemed to be healing nicely.  Sitting up and down became less and less of a problem.

The unexpected was the hit of blues that came around 5 pm. Just a sadness that descended. Because I wasn't thinking especially emotional thoughts or experiencing sad events, I am connecting this to the operation. Apparently post-op blues are not uncommon.

I'm going to bed now, going to rest up for the next few days and make a decision about returning to work on Monday or Tuesday.

Days 1 and 2 after laparoscopic surgery

The first night after surgery, well, it was nothing like I thought it would be. When I was put under at age 16, to have my wisdom teeth out, I slept for 24 hours afterward. Woke up and ate Jello, soup, was pretty much good to go.

I realized that I would not be "good to go," and I was pretty anxious about the pain that would come with the surgery. What I wasn't expecting was my inability to sleep more than an hour without getting up to go to the bathroom (albeit, very very carefully) or take medication.

I slept quite a bit the first day after, but was able to move around, sit up for long periods and even go visit some friends next door.

Day two was really when it all hit. The pain in my shoulder was excruciating. Apparently the CO2 gas that is needed to push the abdomen wall away from the internal organs gets stuck underneath the diaphram, and radiates pain to the shoulder. It was the worst pain. The internal organs just felt sore, as did the incisions.

Because it was Thanksgiving, we headed over to our friends house, and I did alright for about 2 hours. But I hadn't gotten a nap in (and I always felt exponentially better after a nap) and so shortly after we ate one of the finest Thanksgiving dinners, I had to leave to rest.

When I woke up, as was par for the course, I felt so much better than before. Too bad I hadn't snuck a nap in before.

I was surprised that the pain that I felt was mostly the shoulder. It was terrible. I medicated properly and also used a heating pad. But the only way to really get rid of the pain was to expel the gas by burping. My poor hubby! Such a unlady-like endeavor.

The story

My husband and I apparently are fairly private people. I know why he is - he has tact. I think I am more private as of late because of my training as a therapist. I know it isn't because I have tact!

Nearly a year ago, my husband and I started our attempts at "starting a family." Those are his words. I'm sure that at my finest, I might be a little more colorful in my words. Pregnancy never occurred.

I was certain it was because I was so stressed out as a private therapist - trying to keep our little world afloat on $11,000 a year. When My Husband, The Saint, graduated from grad school, he was immediately offered a job (in a terrible economy, in fact). We moved to a financial secure world, certain that this was the context in which we would attain pregnancy.

I had read everything there was out there about getting pregnant, and was faithfully buying the proper "stuff" - sticks to pee on, tracking my temperature, checking "fluid," etc. Each month, my period came and some months I took it in stride - especially early on. I thought that it would certainly take us 3-6 months to get pregnant. But, as months 8...11..12... 14 came around and we failed, I became more and more depressed, just feeling a sense of doom and hoping that I was wrong.

I went in for a normal gynecological exam, and the nurse asked me about endometriosis. I cried and said, no, no one in my family had it. Beginning periods early in life, Painful cramps, difficulty conceiving? (She had described me exactly.)  "No," I responded, "I mean, we've all had painful cramps, but that's just part of life, isn't it?"

Apparently not.

We were referred to a specialist who also predominantly talked about endometriosis. I started looking it up online, and prepared for a number of tests. The ultrasound showed a clear growth of endometriosis on my left ovary. Surgery was scheduled.

I was desperate to find anything hopeful,  and the second test - an x-ray called an HSG showed that my tubes were open. I cried with happiness. At least there's ONE thing that was right in my body.

Oh, but not so fast! Even though the tubes were open, the dye that they inserted into my uterus and fallopian tubes didn't fill the abdominal cavity as normal. The doctor doing the test didn't seem super excited about what he was seeing on the TV. I left feeling ambivalent.

We met with our doctor, and she said, Yes, in fact, there were many signs that I had at least severe endometriosis. We prepared for surgery.

With octaves of a mystic depth and height