Doll Hospital

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.


Angel, I’m just learning about your surgery this morning! My thoughts and healing prayers are with you. I’ve had those cysts too. You’ll feel better soon. Stay positive!

by Christy Palumbo Fost on November 16, 2009 at 9:03 am. #

I emailed you Immune Broth recipe for healing~

by Rose on November 17, 2009 at 4:10 am. #

Much love and strength to you in your healing

by Jen on November 17, 2009 at 7:49 am. #

Sending prayers and positive thoughts for you, dear lady. I am burning candles for your recovery.

by Lin on November 17, 2009 at 7:50 am. #

It is now November 17th, and I know all your readers are still thinking of you, and sending positive thoughts.

by Sue on November 17, 2009 at 11:18 am. #

i applied for a job at a place called the Doll Hospital in st. louis last fall. the owner looked like an older doll and told me a position might be opening because one of her apprentices had cancer………….

by sylvio on November 18, 2009 at 8:39 am. #

i am asking yemoja to watch over your recovery

by sylvio on November 18, 2009 at 8:43 am. #

I just had a full hysterectomy for endometriosis–after two surgeries to get adhesions and cysts removed. I’m pulling for you! This is a rough thing to go through, especially without insurance (as I well know). Things will be fine, and you are in my thoughts. I received this as a gift in the hosptial: Best. Uterus. Ever.

I hope you are on the mend! Keep us updated.


by Adrienne on November 19, 2009 at 1:11 pm. #

i will be thinking of you and sending healing thoughts. i had major emergency abdominal surgery this summer. it felt like i was climbing a very dark mountain but i got the top & it’s beautiful up here.

by little black forest on November 21, 2009 at 6:49 am. #

I just read this, Angel.
I hope you’re doing alright. I still think about you often and you are so wonderful. I wish you the best of health, love and happiness.

by julie on December 12, 2009 at 5:36 am. #

Dearest Julie,
Hello my darling! I think of you often as well and like to imagine your adventures in Japan. Thank you for the sweet wishes – I love you!

by Angeliska on December 12, 2009 at 9:50 pm. #

[…] Uncommon Objects when she was in town. One time, she did me a real good turn – I had just had major abdominal surgery, and though I was back at work, I couldn’t really stand up for long periods of time at that […]

by Wisewoman Honey « Angeliska Gazette on September 25, 2014 at 1:40 am. #

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