To me, this is grosser than my surgery photos, but then again, I’m a science nerd, not a coprophiliac or whatever the spelling is for people excited by poo. (By the way, Firefox’s dictionary wants that word to be “necrophilia.” You’re welcome.)
So I’ll give you a minute to change your mind.
Okay, you still want to read about my problem? Fabulous. Here we go.
Part of the thing that was a red flag to me about my condition is that when I had to poo, I had menstrual cramps. That ain’t right. That’s why I was in pain for most of the month, with the worst being the week of my period, because in addition to the poo pain, I was constipated because of painkillers. IT WAS AWESOME, YOU GUYS.
Anyway, that’s why I pushed so hard with this surgery. It’s why I was so miserable. Pooping should be a relief, yes, but the relief shouldn’t be such that you’re doubled over in pain just because your body is doing what it’s supposed to. Frankly, there were times when a fart could put me in the fetal position…because my colon is compressed by my uterus.
Of course, I didn’t know exactly what it was until I had the surgery. I suspected, but you never really know, especially when all of the damage is at the freakin’ TOP of your uterus, where no one can feel/see it unless they’re inside your abdominal cavity.
I used to enjoy a good poo. I don’t know many people who don’t…they may be afraid to poo in public, but when they’re home, they take magazines and books in, or their smartphones or tablets or whatever, and relish the experience by treating the toilet like a lounge chair. I didn’t quite go that far, but you know how cats will run around the house like insane circus performers after they poo? Yeah, I always felt pretty awesome after a good BM, and coffee could usually be counted on to keep me regular.
I’ve stopped drinking as much coffee, because seriously, my truce with the toilet was over. I don’t know what Forrest thought about that, but he must have noticed. Foods that had any possibility of irritating what I thought was IBS were avoided. I was adapting to the pain.
So now, I have had the surgery and found out what’s going on.
I spent several days so loaded down with painkillers that even if I had to go, I couldn’t feel it. The surgery/anesthesia affected me going to the restroom, as well…even peeing was difficult for a few days, but I managed.
It took me 4 days after surgery to have a BM. If I was having a hysterectomy, they would have insisted I have a BM before leaving the hospital…I’m kind of glad there wasn’t any pressure, there, but then again, they probably give you stuff to make you go.
ANYWAY, because I was still on the painkillers, I wasn’t really bothered by anything except the timeline. Four days is kind of a long time.
Well, after that, when visiting the toilet started becoming a game of, “Seriously? That much pain, and nothing?”, I began lowering my painkiller dosage, because I knew they were causing a good bit of the issue with dehydration.
Now I take one if I absolutely need it, but am relying on my NSAIDs for the most part.
My surgeon told me, “there’s no need for you to be in any pain after this procedure, so don’t be afraid to ask for more medication if you need it.” At the time, I was comforted by his words. I was relieved that someone wanted me to be comfortable, without saying something like, “Well, some pain, you’re just going to have to put up with.” That shit’s annoying, even though it’s true.
I don’t think even he realized the scope of the problem. It breaks down like this, from what I understand:
- The scar tissue’s still there. That hasn’t changed, and isn’t going anywhere until someone goes in with a scalpel and corrects it.
- Thus, the problem is still there, as it was before surgery.
- Add some inflammation to that. Add some swelling.
- So the areas around the scar tissue are still swollen (I can tell this because of my lower abdomen’s shape – it’s still not back to normal), but the scar tissue can’t stretch to accommodate.
- Now, when nature tries to call, the inflamed bowel (which is probably narrowed in addition to everything else, now) tugs on the scar tissue, which tugs on my inflamed uterus (and ovaries…they’re all attached, remember), causing ZOMG SO MUCH PAIN.
- The physical properties of nature’s calling are such that passage is nearly impossible, causing ongoing ZOMG SO MUCH PAIN.
I’ve tried everything aside from straight-up laxatives or an enema. I’m about to do the former, and just prepare myself for an evening of “fun,” because I’m curled up in bed right now, composing this while laying on my side with a heating pad on my lower abdomen. I can’t do anything. My quality of life is impacted because my freakin’ bowels are impacted.
Never, in a million years, did I ever think that my biggest problem would be having to poo, and literally not being able to. NEVER.
So now you know why I’m not writing many blog entries, why I haven’t sent out cards, why I’m kind of subdued, why I’m not doing my gaming stream (for those of you from there who follow this blog – and BTW, I’m sorry, but if you unfollow me, I totally understand), why I’m not participating in anyone ELSE’S gaming stream (which is what I would be doing, anyway, when not gaming myself). It’s why I’m not recording my vlogs. Why I’m not answering emails. Why I’m just laying in bed watching entire series on Netflix while playing solitaire. Why I’m, frankly, a little depressed, right now.
I wasn’t kidding when I said my quality of life has been impacted. My leg’s numb at the top, and the feeling’s coming back with quite a bit of nerve pain, and even that is bearable compared to my lower abdomen, right now.
So my follow-up visit is probably going to yield a lot more interesting things than just a “how I’m healing” update. Stay tuned for Monday afternoon’s post. I don’t know if I’ll feel like saying anything else between now and then.