What’s happening today is that I’m 3 days post-op from a bilateral salpingectomy, which is the removal of my pesky fallopian tubes. I also underwent an endometrial ablation, which is the burning of the inside lining of my uterus (gross) in the hopes that my hideously painful periods will cease trying to murder me, as they have every month for the last 32 years.
32 YEARS, DUDES!! I’ve been bleeding out of my vag for longer than most millennials have been alive.
I decided to have these procedures after my OB/Gyn, who looks and talks exactly like Lorelai Gilmore, suggested it (in truth, her Lorelai-ness may have had more weight in the decision than I realize. But I’m ok with that). Here’s the thing: I love kids. I really do. I just don’t want to birth any more of them. And since I made this decision several years ago, there doesn’t seem much point in continuing to endure the monthly battle that is my menstrual cycle. I’m tired of all of it. The mood swings, the mindbending cramps, the blood, blood, blood. So after all the research I did (while trying hard not to fall into terrifying, worst-case-scenario Reddit and WebMD rabbit holes), I decided the Novasure Ablation was for me. Done laparoscopically, the simple procedure would slough off my stubborn uterine lining, resulting in lighter, and in many cases, nonexistent periods for several years. To boot, my doctor would also remove my fallopian tubes (“They serve no purpose besides transporting an egg to a uterus”, Lorelai told me), making future me-babies impossible.
SIGN ME THE HELL UP.
I got to the hospital at 5 am on Tuesday, actually kind of looking forward to a few hours of uninterrupted sleep via general anesthesia. However, I woke up several hours later feeling like I’d been socked in the groin. I had two small incisions on either side of my lower stomach, probably the size of a bitten-off fingernail, and another inside my bellybutton. All three were stitched up and covered with medical tape. I was extremely dehydrated and nauseous, despite the anti-nausea patch that sat behind my ear. The nurse gave me some diet coke and something that looked like a plastic sock for me to take in the car, in case I needed to throw up. Jeremy, my perennial rock of ages, who has supported every decision I’ve made, no matter how questionable, fettered me home and into bed, where I popped a Motrin 800 mg and sacked out. Oh, wait. First I tried to pee. Which is really challenging when your lower extremities are basically asleep from heavy narcotics. But I think I managed a little.
Lily came home from school in the late afternoon, bounding in to check on me. She kicked off her Chuck Taylors and climbed into my bed. “I’m really glad you didn’t die,” she whispered. At 13, she is so much better at hiding her anxiety about everything that’s scary about the world than I was. I’d had no idea she was even nervous about the procedure until right then. Sometimes I really have my head up my ass.
I was able to get up for a bit and eat dinner with my family, despite the aching in my abdomen. Mostly I was just really, really tired. And my mouth was dry as dust. No amount of water seemed to alleviate that. The bed was calling me back. So I hit the pillow again at about 7 pm and slept the night through.
Day two was similar, with a little less sleepiness. I drank two giant bottles of coconut water, hoping the electrolytes would help with the dehydrated feeling. I think it did, but also, I guess it just takes a while to work anesthesia out of your system. I was able to work (never been so grateful for a home office), to drive a little bit, grab some groceries, and then I passed out early that evening again.
SO, here I am on day three. I’m definitely getting better. My incisions look pretty good. Been slathering them in Vitamin E. I still feel like there are two small weights hanging off my ovaries every time I get up from sitting. And there is a numb spot in the bottom right portion of my abdomen. I am tempted to pinch it or stick myself with a little sewing needle, just because I can. But I haven’t. So far, so good. Peace out for now.