JoAnn Gometz

Writing | Editing | Content Strategy

It's Been One Week Since You Looked at Me

It's actually been two weeks. But if I'm sampling Barenaked Ladies, I better do it right. In the last two weeks, I have been reminded that when people ask, "How are you feeling?" or "Are you feeling better?" they want me to respond as if there is absolutely nothing that could be better in my world. 

"I'm awesome," they want me to say. "Never better! Back to workschoolifestuff pronto! All surgical things are magical and I have no side effects!"

They do not want me to say that I was in surgery for 4 hours. Nor that coming out from general anesthesia, the recovery nurse had to page the nurse anesthetist to bring her breathing kit because I felt like I was suffocating. They'd be very happy if I skipped my 3 hours in Stage 1 recovery, where, every time the nurses thought I was awake, I'd drop off again. And the 1 hour in Stage 2 recovery just seems fluffy.

"So you went home the same day?" they ask, eagerly. "It's the tiny incisions?"

I think to myself, yes, but so not the point. I ponder that through three "tiny" incisions, my doctor saved both ovaries, removing the cysts and cyst walls from both. She removed the entirety of both tubes, which, in a post-op report to my mother, she twice called "NONfunctional." She cut apart a bunch of adhesions, details of which have not yet been forthcoming. Then, through the magic of the hysteroscope, she removed 75 percent of the submucosal fibroid, which will now require ongoing monitoring. To go farther, she said, would break the first rule: do no harm.

People don't want to hear about the temperature spikes that make no sense, the night sweats and crying jags as my ovaries and their crucial hormones attempt to stake out territory in wacky town. The ongoing personal digestive flume ride, too, wasn't on the list of considerations before surgery. It now defines my schedule for leaving the house, accepting visitors, and determining what I may be able to eat. Waking every three hours each night ensures that rest and recovery aren't exactly happening, either. And then there's the belly button incision, which may or may not be growing mushrooms.

I'll see the doctor tomorrow. Get the scoop. Hope she has some solutions for the temperature, flume ride, and 'shrooms.

Because really, I'd like to be able to say everything's hunky dory. But it's been two weeks since I looked at my computer.