Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Surely I'm not due for this till my 80's... right?!

Another post I was not anticipating writing.  Taking a deep breath, here we go.  I know I have said these very words before but here we go again. 

Men, you may want to avert your eyes. I'm about to get... personal here.  Al, you can keep reading since you've been through it right along with me.  (And might I add what an incredible husband I have for taking such good care of me lately.)

For a long time I did not talk about this because...well...it's hella embarrassing.  But the more I have gone through these last few weeks made me realize maybe this just might be something that I should talk about, embarrassing or not.  At one point, I thought for sure I was the only person I knew who was going through something like this.

Hemorrhoids.  Buckle up.  I'm going there.  *sigh*

When I was pregnant with the Big Guy they appeared towards the end of my pregnancy.  I was horrified.  But I also realized when you gain like 60 pounds during a pregnancy it probably can't be avoided.  I did everything I was told to do after the pregnancy, but they did not go away like my other girlfriends assured me they would.  I'm sure it didn't help that just 10 months later I was pregnant with twins.  And you know, carrying two 7+ pound babies at once only made the issue worse.  Again, followed all instructions after pregnancy... to no avail.

When the twins were about 6 months old I made an appointment with my doctor who referred me to a Colorectal Doctor for treatment since we had exhausted everything else.  After a few months there we determined surgery was what I needed and I was told I would need someone to watch the boys for at least 2 weeks.  Two full weeks minimum!  Who was I going to get to take 2 weeks off from work to watch a two year old and less than one year old twins.  Riight.

I put it off.  It wasn't the right time.  Plus, the thought of surgery after a c-section didn't exactly thrill me.  Here we are well over 3 years later and while I dealt with it for far longer than I thought I could, I finally hit my breaking point at the start of this summer.  For a few weeks I was in the gym back in a routine (again) trying so freaking hard to finally lose all this weight... and lets just say... things were getting in the way.  Yeah, I said it.

I called the colorectal doctor and tried to just schedule the Hemorrhoidectomy but since it had been a few years they needed me to start coming back in for appointments again.  My mom really pressed me to book the surgery when I again started to put things off.  She took a week off from work to watch the boys while Al took an additional few days around her schedule.  My sister in law and Al's parents pitched in too.  I had the surgery September 23rd.  I was sick for the whole week before I was so nervous about having this surgery.  That morning I was actually pleasantly surprised at how well things seemed to go.

They even let Al sit with me until I got taken in.  The only thing that bothered me was being surrounded by so many elderly people.  Nothing against the elderly, but why was no one else my age or younger even.  Aside from one other person Al swears he saw who was also young, everyone looked to be in their 70's and 80's.  The last thing I remember before surgery is asking a nurse why everyone else was 'so...old' and she just laughed.  Afterwards I was quite uncomfortable but thrilled I didn't feel too badly and was being given pain meds.

This time around, I was told I'd need a full week of babysitters to watch the boys (1 week, not 2 like a few years ago) but that it would be 'about 3 weeks' before I was back to my old self.  Instructions?  Besides the pain meds, sitz baths and eat normally.  That's it!  The doctor stressed people try to alter their diet - to eat what you normally do, throw in some extra fruits and veggies and drink lots of fluids.  Followed ALL instructions - trust!  My goal was to have the fastest recovery ever and be at the movies with Julie the following weekend and her house with the family for dinner too.  I thought if I did what I was supposed to I could maybe even knock a few days off of the full week of needing help.

The first few days went OK - pain, pain meds... while it was hard to function on the meds (made me sleep a lot) I could sit even though it was uncomfortable.  I thought things were going to be OK aside from some small unpleasant side effects, but it all changed one week after the surgery.  Sparing you lovelies all the details but we are talking the worst pain I have ever been in in my whole entire life, including childbirth.  I think I spent a full 3 days crying from that point on.  Pain meds didn't touch a thing.  Multiple calls to the Dr.  Boys spent the entire weekend with my in laws.  I thought for sure I would be hospitalized.

One night we tried new meds.  Instead of making me sleep it kept me awake.  I got online and started looking at forums with comments from people who had hemorrhoidectomies and what I saw infuriated me.  Maybe 2 comments from people who were shocked at the experiences some people listed because it went great for them ...dozens and dozens more all writing about experiencing things like me and even worse.  Everyone claimed their doctors said they were in that lucky 5% of people with complications and that it was so rare - yet how could there be so freaking many of us.

Yesterday Al had to take another day and take me to the Dr's regarding the complications.  I still can't drive, my pain meds have been switched again and I am looking at a few more weeks added on to my recovery.  Al is using his lunch breaks broken up to take the boys to and from school every day.

Right now?  I am 100% regretting this surgery nearly 2 weeks out and while there must be an end in sight, I just don't see it.  As more people have heard about what kind of surgery I had I've heard from more than a few people about how awful the surgery really is.  But no one talks about it.  I definitely think it's something doctors need to be a bit more aware of.  While it was described to me as 'some pain and discomfort' with 'one week down but better in three'... I mentioned to my Dr yesterday that this is worse than childbirth.  He nodded his head and said he has heard that from some younger women with kids yes. 

I wanted to slug him. 

Two weeks out and I still can't go out and run a 10 minute errand without being down and medicated for the rest of the day.  I can't even do much for the kids around the house.  I'm stuck on the couch or in bed.  I had this surgery to kind of have a new beginning after kids in a way - get myself healthy, take care of me for once.  Never did I expect to be in worse shape than I started.  I hope more than anything a few weeks from now I can say you know what, it really was all worth it... but right now I am seriously not so sure.