by Angeliska on November 13, 2009
Okay so, on this coming Monday, the 16th of November,
I will be going into the hospital to have surgery to remove
a large ovarian cyst. This has all happened quite quickly,
so I’m still processing a lot of information and emotion
and have been having a pretty hard time knowing how
to deal with it. I’m very blessed in that I have an incredible
golden web of support in my friends and family. I am also
enormously lucky because I was able to qualify for a program
that made it possible for me to have a medical procedure done
that would normally cost around $25,000. I, like many of my friends,
do not have health insurance. My doctor is donating his services
to perform the surgery, which is just beyond amazing.
Ivory Anatomical Figure from the Semmelweiss Museum
(Photo by Curious Expeditions)
The doctor’s fairly sure that I have endometriosis,
and that the cyst is an endometrioma. Meaning that it’s
non-cancerous, but they still want to remove it.
Given, however, the fact that my mother died of uterine cancer-
they are taking no chances, and want to be 100% sure.
At this point, it’s unclear whether I will be having a laparoscopy
(smaller incision, less recovery time) or open surgery.
I won’t know until I wake up and it’s all done.
If it’s an open surgery (which they are preparing for),
I will be recuperating at home for about 10 days,
and then taking things pretty slow for up to six weeks.
Let’s cross our fingers that they won’t have to do it that way.
By the exquisite Sorrel Smith
The hardest part for me is reconciling
all my tangled emotions and fears of illness,
hospitals and surgery which all relates back
to what I experienced as a child, when I lost
my mother in that sterile and terrifying labyrinth.
I am very afraid, and very anxious about this –
especially since I only have a short time to prepare for it.
Healing (Photograph by Wespionage)
Seeing this image brought back an intense memory
that’s been floating around in my head during all this:
I am little, in a medicine blue changing room with my mother.
Off goes her paper robe, and she’s there in all her whiteness,
her body is like mine will be one day, but far lovelier -
she’s a pale Waterhouse naiad, dusted with freckles.
I am fascinated by the purple ink lines and diagrams
dotting her belly. I ask her, “Mommy, why did you draw
all over yourself?” and she explains to me that the
doctors drew those lines there so that they would know
where to cut. I remember being horrified. I still am.
Years of bottled up tears are suddenly sliding down
my cheeks, and every day that I’m walking through
this, I come closer to an understanding I’ve been
avoiding almost all my life. Circles and cycles
and bloody threads tying me to my past and future.
I have a deep desire to complete the circle one
day, and someday bear a child of my own.
It breaks my heart to be told that my chances
at making that a reality are reduced.
It’s really hard not to be scared right now –
the kind of fear that seizes up tight
in your throat and makes your eyes burn.
In the last few days, the loving letters and
calls from friends have been the bright
candles that have been helping me dispel
that awful feeling. I know that all this is allowing
me the opportunity to work through some old
ghosts, and I feel like a lot of the outcome hinges
on how I choose to walk through it. I’m trying
to do it with a lot of hope and an open heart.
I would really appreciate any good energy
you could send my way, especially on the
16th of November, and would love to hear
from you in the days following, because
I’m going to cooped up healing for a little while.
I hoping to feel well enough to do a lot of writing,
because it’s really helping me right now, but
please understand if it’s quiet around here.
I felt a little conflicted about being so open here,
but if we can’t talk and write about these things
then what’s the point? I consider the human body
to be an incredible machine, in all its glory and its
failings. I’m not shy about discussing its interworkings,
only fascinated – and I don’t believe in the concept of
“too much information”. No such thing in my book.
The Uterus Vase by The Plug & Stéphanie Rollin
It is bizarre to me that I’ve seen this vase
described as “erotic” or “hideous” or “distasteful”.
It’s a beautiful form, a miraculous design – I would be
thrilled to have this on my table filled with bluebells.
Every single one of us came out of a woman’s uterus.
That’s incredible, isn’t it? Picture anyone at all,
and imagine them being born. Strange to contemplate.
Speaking of, I kind of want one of these to cuddle.
Aren’t they cute? Unfortunately, they were subject
to a recall – it seems people were worried that infants
would choke on the ovaries? Or something. Jeez.
Alright, my dearies – wish me luck,
and let’s hope that all my nurses look just like that.
(Photo by Babet)
I wish I was going to the doll hospital instead.