Hey everyone! As you know if you’ve been following this blog, I had surgery about a month ago. It was a simple laparoscopy and it was the second one I’ve had for my endometriosis. I wrote that this time went MUCH better than last time, and it did. I was up and walking and talking and even eating a couple of hours after my surgery – as opposed to my first one, when I spent most of the day in the hospital bed, followed by a lot of throwing up. I felt like some kind of sickness superhero. A goddess of being ill. Boy, I took that surgery in stride. I just marched right through it, and I felt pretty great.
I think the only reason I felt that way is because I must have expected that this surgery would transform me into a useless zombie made of pain for a while. When it didn’t, I felt mistakenly invincible and like I had conquered death or something. In actuality, the surgery really didn’t go very well. Why? Well reader, I will tell you. I mistook the fact that I could eat, drink, walk, talk, and be freaking amazing very quickly to mean that I had “recovered” from the surgery. The problem with that is that it’s been about a month, now, and I’m still what you would call “recovering.” You may just need to eat, drink, walk, and use the bathroom to be released from the hospital, but you need to do a lot more before you can call yourself “recovered”.
Here’s a handy list of what’s going on with me at the moment:
I may not be a zombie made of pain, but since the surgery a month ago I’ve still been experiencing high levels of endo-like pain. Thank goodness gracious I can take vicodin again – I hate you, tramadol, and you can just go DIE. …anyway, sorry, I got distracted. What was I saying? Oh yes – I’m still in a lot more pain than a person who had surgery a month ago should be in.
See, I’ve told you my Davy Jones theory – that after surgery, the endometriosis patient gets to enjoy their brief time of love and happiness on land after surgery before returning to the rough and stormy waters of chronic pain. If this is true (which, it obviously must be. Doesn’t it sound scientific and informed??) then I must have missed the “all ashore!” call this round, because I am still hurting just as much as before.
But I do know why I’m feeling on the crap side of chronic pain. Or, I at least have some good educated guesses.
Firstly, during the surgery we did find a hernia. It’s terrifying, and I feel like I’m walking around with a ticking time bomb in my pelvis, but the doctor says that if I’m not feeling intense, concentrated pain where it is, there’s no reason to have another surgery. He also said it’s possible that it will stabilize itself.
Also, this past weekend, we discovered that I’ve contracted a bladder infection from the surgery, isn’t that peachy? Surgery making people sick – what a wacky world we live in. Anyway, I’ve been (mis)diagnosed with a bladder infection before, but never actually HAD it until now. But if I do indeed have it…which I am still understandably dubious about…it certainly does cause a LOT of pain.
2. Flu-like symptoms.
About a week after my surgery I got some kind of horrible flu. I call it a flu because I’m not a doctor and to me flu means “fever-coughing-achy-snotty-shiver-sometimes-you-loose-your-voice-pain-wad.” That flu made it’s debut on father’s day. While I was on the lake. Nice. Then it went away. Then this weekend, it came back! Actually, it decided to make its reappearance on the fourth of July, because I have a particularly festive flu.
I don’t know what is up with this. I guess my immune system is still trying to bounce back from the surgery – real technical stuff. Doctor says fevers and stuff often accompany infection. And I’ve heard there’s some kind of “summer flu” going around. Or maybe I’m just lucky.
3. TIRED ALL THE TIME.
I don’t know what else to say about this really. Ever since the surgery, I have been tired. ALL THE TIME. I’ve gotten excited about things, like wanting to chase my little sister with a bug, or a really good commercial, and mistaken that excitement for energy – but my body was quick to point out that mistake. For the past few days I’ve lost my appetite, and many of my loved ones blame my skimpy meals on my lack of energy, but I was exhausted way before I stopped eating.
In fact, I’m tired now. Surprise surprise! Luckily, all of these symptoms are pretty common, but I didn’t know that. I’ve called the emergency room a couple of times telling them that I’m 99.9% sure I’m dying. But I’m not. I’m just not quite better yet. I’m sure if I took it easy, ate more, and slept more, I’d get to feeling better much quicker, but I hate missing work and I hate missing family events so some days, I just decide I have more spoons than I really do.
If you just had or are about to have a laparoscopy, it really is a pretty easy procedure. But any surgery can (and often does) yield unexpected results and symptoms. Just keep in contact with your doctor and know you’re not dying, you just aren’t back up to 100% yet.