Family Medical Bingo (Alternate Title: My Hysterectomy Was Not the Big Medical Event of the Week)

Well, I’m glad that this week is over.

I’m about 48 hours post-op from my hysterectomy, and all things considered, I’m doing well. However, our family had quite the eventful week, medically speaking, so let’s back up a bit, shall we?

On Monday evening, I noticed that Felix had a rather large, angry-looking bug bite on the back of his right leg. I made a mental note to keep an eye on it, and by Tuesday morning, the inflamed area around the bite had doubled in size. Our pediatrician fit us in for an appointment and advised us to call back if it continued to spread. By Tuesday evening, it had indeed continued to spread, and was now very swollen and forming a line upward into Felix’s groin. Our pediatrician advised us to take him to the Emergency room, which we did. Several very long hours later, Felix was admitted to the hospital for IV antibiotics and observation for suspected cellulitis due to either a Staph or Strep infection, and by 2:30 am on Wednesday morning, we were settled into an inpatient room and Felix had finally received his first antibiotic dose. At 7:30 am, when the nurses came in to administer the next dose of antibiotics, I expected to start discussing the discharge plan for that morning, hoping to be home by noon. I was already anticipating my surgery the following morning, and wanted to get a nap so as to be somewhat rested prior to my turn in the hospital. However, after examination, the affected area on Felix’s leg had not responded as well as hoped to the first dose of medication, and the pediatrician on the floor was skeptical that we would get discharged at all on Wednesday, let alone that morning. At that point, I pulled the cancer card, explaining that I was scheduled for surgery the following morning, and pushed for a possible discharge on Wednesday evening. Fortunately, Felix began to respond very well to the antibiotics after the second IV dose, and we were able to come home around 5:00 pm Wednesday evening with additional antibiotics and strict instructions to return to the hospital if things did not continue to improve.*

Once we were all home, it was time to switch gears and start getting ready for my surgery, which was still scheduled for the following morning. While I had anticipated spending the beginning of the week resting, cleaning the house, and wrapping up any loose ends before my procedure, I found that my surgery became somewhat of an afterthought in the wake of Felix’s hospitalization. I think this actually served me well, as I had very little time to dwell on the procedure, but around 10:30 pm on Wednesday night, I was finally able to exhale a bit and take my first of the two required pre-op antibacterial showers. As I stood in the warm water, I began to release all of the adrenaline, fear, and exhaustion that had built up over the past few days and just sobbed. Processing both what our family had just been through and what we were about to undergo was…well, challenging doesn’t fully describe it.

The next morning, my husband Christian and I were up early and on the road to my surgical center. We were pretty bleary-eyed throughout all of the pre-op questions, but everything felt smooth and standard, a welcome relief at this point in the week. I was still running on quite a bit of adrenaline, and ready to finally be done with a procedure that had taken up quite a bit of mental real estate for many months. I’ll save the full details for a separate post, because there is quite a bit I want to record on this whole process, but the procedure went very well, and my pain levels have consistently been much lower than I expected. I stayed overnight at the surgical center and was discharged Friday morning. Coming home has actually been more of a challenge than I expected. At the hospital, I felt surprisingly good: my pain was very well managed, I was well cared for, and I was riding such a wave of relief at the completion of the procedure. Re-entry into reality after this past week has been challenging. I have found myself at the bottom of a tremendous adrenaline drop, and this, coupled with the hormonal shift as a physiological result of the surgery, has made me crabby, weepy, and mentally and emotionally exhausted. I have been trying to rest as much as I can, and continue to sleep a lot – last night I slept 13 hours straight, which was very much needed, both physically and mentally. My body is recovering very well so far, and I’m finding patience in the process, letting my body dictate what it needs in the moment. I’ve said it before though, and I think it’s worth repeating: I’m so glad this week is over.

 

*Felix’s leg has continued to improve each day and he is doing great. He was an incredible trooper throughout the entire ordeal, and I am so proud of how he handled the whole situation. 

2 thoughts on “Family Medical Bingo (Alternate Title: My Hysterectomy Was Not the Big Medical Event of the Week)

  1. Oh my goodness, I’m glad it’s over too. What a scary, stressful ordeal with Felix. Like you didn’t have enough on your plate for one week. What a relief to both be back at home. Keep resting when you can. These surgeries take their toll physically and emotionally. And then there’s the grief component, which is very real. My best to you. And to Felix too. Rest and heal well.

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