Sunday, April 29, 2012

...burning the bridge that needed burning...

i'm convinced maren and i hung out in the pre earth life. it seems to be the only way to explain our instant bond. that and the fact we both don't have a uterus. it's a very prestigious club, let me tell you what. it is so uncommon for younger women to have complete hysterectomies, so i begged maren to post. while the outcome was the same, our stories, reactions, and experiences have been so different. of course this was a huge blow, but she is strong, and keeps a sense of humor about it. see? basically she is my soul mate.

also, while technically national infertility awareness week ended saturday, we have a few more guest posts coming! there are just too many amazing stories to share!


Guest blogger?! ME?? Oh dear. Kenna has lost it. Haha. ;-) I jumped at saying yes when she asked. The downside is I think I've re-written this story a minimum of five times. I kept coming back to an entry I did a couple weeks after my first surgery title 'Confession' in which this was the opening paragraph:

"I don't think I ever really wanted to be pregnant. I think at one point I viewed it as a means to an end. It was only a way for me to get my family. I never had that desire to birth a child. I never had dreams of being pregnant. Only those in which a toddler was running and playing. In my teens/early 20's I did all those things I knew I shouldn't. I partied hard and rebelled with the best of them. When I got the tattoo on my hip I remember being asked what I'd do when I got pregnant. I just laughed and asked why in the world they thought I'd ever be pregnant. It makes me wonder if deep down I always knew my path would be adoption."

A 'brief' little background on my husband and me. We met in fall of 2007, were married in June of 2008 and began trying to have a baby around fall of 2008. In January of 2010 we began seeing a specialist. March of 2010 brought our first diagnosis. Azoospermia. That was a kick in the nuts. (Later we'd add diminished ovarian reserves and endometriosis to the mix) In June we opted to stop treatment and January of 2011 we had our first 'class' with an adoption agency. Here's the long version of July 2011 until now..
  
In July I got my lab results from the laparoscopy. They found endometriosis! I wasn't crazy! (Ok, so maybe I was but I wasn't imagining all this pain.) Finally I knew I'd be out of the pain that had silently consumed my life. I'd been having almost debilitating cramps since I was about 15 and it got worse after rounds of Clomid and my HSG. Healing physically from the lap seemed pretty easy. Soon after I was excited to get back to 'normal' and start doing the simple things I'd been missing out on like working out or being *gasp* intimate with my husband without being in pain. 

 A month later the pain I'd experienced was back with a vengeance. In I went to my doctor and I remember sitting in the waiting room with all these pregnant women thinking it was so unfair and wishing they had a separate entrance for me to sneak in to avoid the heartache. There must have been over 5 pregnant women there that day. My doctor wanted to to an internal ultrasound to look at things and I cried from the pain the entire time. When it was over I remember looking at him and saying 'I can't do this anymore. I'm done'. He could tell I meant it and we scheduled my hysterectomy. Before I left I remember him asking me to make sure I was ready to close this door and he suggested that I also talk in great length with Ty to make sure he was on board to 'burn this bridge'. 

Tyson was and is such an amazing support to me. When we discussed me having a hysterectomy that night he told me to do it. That all he wanted was his wife out of pain and this really felt like my best chance. I wanted so badly to be the kind of wife he deserved. One that wasn't in pain and laying around the house all the time. 

In September my uterus and ovaries were taken out and I was started on hormone therapy. Surgery went relatively well. One of my least favorite things that happened during the hospital stay was the night phlebotomist stopping by to take my blood and telling me it was so they could make sure I didn't lose too much blood delivering my baby. Yeah. That's right. My baby. Say what woman? Picture me super medicated and confused and poor Ty looking almost panicked thinking I was about to go ape on the woman. Good times. Or something.

The week after surgery... the weepies hit. The 'what the hell have I done' weepies. There were countless times I sobbed for no apparent reason and times I snapped at Ty. What a good man for putting up with me. One of the funniest things he said to me during this time was 'It's all fun and games until Maren starts crying'.
  
Sure, I had my regrets after. I wondered if taking out both ovaries was a huge mistake. There I was, having wicked hot flashes and mood swings of the worst kind and there wasn't a whole lot I could do. I felt like I had lost any kind of control I might have had on my body.

So here we are, 7 1/2 months later. Physically I've recovered. Emotionally, it still stings on occasion and I get the 'why me's' but I'm managing better and recently I found the strength to talk to my doctor about the super low points I've hit. Which I fully encourage others to do. Occasionally I still have that thought of regret. It's something I doubt will ever go away completely. The hot flashes have subsided. (except when I get hella nervous/flustered) We're officially an approved 'waiting' couple hoping to adopt. Since my hysterectomy I've tried to be as open as possible about it, just like I was and am with our infertility. I've found that my way of healing and managing has been by talking about it and trying to help others. Even if it's 'just' being there to listen and vent to. When I went through my hysterectomy I felt like I was the only one and it was new uncharted territory. I felt kind of ashamed at times. 

Looking back.. I'd do it all again. For me having a hysterectomy burned the bridge I needed burned. Along with that nasty little troll that hangs out underneath. It allowed me to move on. The biological baby door has closed but a beautiful set of doors has opened in it's place. Ones that lead to adoption and that little child I saw in my dreams.




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54 comments:

Kristin said...

Man, I was way far behind on your blog. I've spent a lot of time catching up and I love all these posts from your friends and family. It's so great to read everyone's story. Adoption is hard. I wish more people understood that. I'm actually grateful that I couldn't have children biologically because I can't imagine not having the kids I have now. But I'm so glad I'm on this side of the experience and don't have to relive infertility and adoption again.

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