A Day In The Life Of A Woman Newly Without Uterus

I knew you all were sitting around at home thinking, oh my, I wonder how exciting Q’s life is, now that she has given up an internal organ? Has the universe shifted to accommodate this change? Are the paparazzi clamoring for interviews?  I just couldn’t keep you in suspense any longer, so here you have it: my exciting day.

4:15am Wake up with strong dull ache deep in my pelvis. Take another of those 600 mg Ibuprofen tablets my surgeon prescribed. Pee, which is so much nicer than letting it all drip into a catheter. Resolve to always be grateful for the ability to pee. Go back to sleep.

early grey8:00am Wake up again, feeling better. Kiss husband good morning and then send him off to the kitchen to make my morning cup of Earl Grey. Wonder, for no good reason, if Lord Grey, whoever he was, ever knew anything about the uterus, or only about bergamot.

8:45am Pull on smelly old clothes from yesterday and go out into the living room for breakfast. Wooden kitchen chairs are much too uncomfortable, so these days I sit in the recliner. We discovered that the leaf in the kitchen table fits perfectly across the arms of the recliner, making me a built-in table. Extra bonus points because the table belonged to my beloved grandparents and having it in front of me reminds me of them. Eat one fried egg and one homemade whole wheat roll. Read a couple of blogs.

10:30am Wave goodbye to dear husband as he leaves to take our two dogs out to the river for a long walk. They have only had short walks at the nearby park this past week, poor babies. They were starting to get restless, and husband as well, so I sent them out to play. I’m no longer unsteady on my feet so I’ve graduated to unsupervised time (“I’m a big girl now!”). Continue online reading. Wonder all the while whether it is my vagina or my bladder that seems to be twitching every few minutes and how long that is going to last.

scars11:30am Shut down the computer and take a shower, carefully. Look in the mirror at my abdominal scars and guess that probably two of the five will not heal flat, including the one at my navel.* Decide I haven’t worn a two-piece bathing suit in probably more than 15 years, so whatever. Shrug. Enjoy the warm water on my head and body. Get out of the shower and recoil in horror at the smell of the clothes I have been wearing. Throw them all in the laundry and try to find something soft and comfortable to wear. Select pajama bottoms with a wide elastic waistband, tank top and sweatshirt. Skip makeup and jewelry.

Meaning12:00 Decide the shower initiative was utterly exhausting. Set Pandora to play relaxing spa-like music. Take an oxycodone and crawl into bed. Read a few pages from our book group’s current selection, The Meaning of Human Existence by Edward O. Wilson. Ponder the paradox of how our existence is accidental and therefore meaningless but incorporates a consciousness and self-awareness and is therefore deeply meaningful. Make some kind of momentary connection between the Big Bang and Buddhism. Realize that thoughts are spinning in a narcotic-inspired way. Set the book down and try to nap. Unable to sleep, float around in a restful space without stress or emotional complexities. Wonder if oxycodone is a cure for depression. Ask self, how bad can addiction really be? Remember Jesse and his girlfriend from Breaking Bad and tell self: Really bad.

1:45pm Hear husband and puppies return from their seven-mile walk. Note that all three of them seem to have worked off some of their youthful restlessness. Note also that I seem to have worked off my own youthful restlessness some twenty years ago. Shrug. Appreciate the drug-induced it-doesn’t-matter mood I am in.

2:30pm Move back to the living room recliner. Eat some broccoli and a leftover slice of pizza. Continue my task of cleaning out old emails. Reread some of the email exchanges I had with my closest friend from 2006 and 2007. Become nostalgic for a time when we communicated more regularly. Decide to write her an excruciatingly detailed email simply because I have the time to do it, and because she can handle hearing about The Meaning of Human Existence and my twitchy vagina (or bladder) in the same email.

Almost 5pm. Make myself a cup of tea. Shake my head in astonishment at all I have accomplished today. Suggest to husband that we take a walk around the park. Walk extremely slowly. Return home and slide back into the recliner. Ask dear husband to make me a spinach, mango and grape smoothie. Drink the smoothie. Listen to the news on NPR. Decide to use my email to close friend as the starting point for this blog post. Send expansive, Big Bang-Buddha-like, we-are-all-connected loving thoughts out to all my blogging friends.

 

* Photo is not me but rather an image obtained online. Incisions are fairly similar to mine.

13 thoughts on “A Day In The Life Of A Woman Newly Without Uterus

  1. My belly looked amazingly similar to the one in the photo along with 2 more incisions on my upper belly. Even my worst incision has healed pretty flat. Not that it matters. With all of the extra skin I’m gonna end up with, they’ll need to invent a Spanx swimsuit for me.

    I have been wondering about how you are doing. I’m happy to see that you are resting and eating some good food and walking slowly.

    Take care of yourself. Sending you good thoughts

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    • Hi Patty – My incision (one of five) that is healing the fastest certainly appears to be leaving a strange indentation in my skin. We’ll see if that changes over time. But you are right, it doesn’t matter (and I write that today, no longer under the influence of oxycodone). I fretted about the scars ahead of time but, as usual, medical situations restore clarity about priorities. I care about being healthy, physically and mentally. I don’t care that I don’t have the same body I had when I was 20. So I will put my efforts towards the physical and mental health.

      Thanks for the good thoughts. You know I send my own good wishes back to you.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I was thinking yesterday how much easier it is to have a sense of humor when I am not stressed out at work. Even though of course there is some stress involved in pain and feeling tired, it’s not much compared to my job. I have the great privilege of not having to do anything now but recover. On top of my leave last year, it’s making me question the wisdom of staying in that job.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s wonderful that you have some space and time to recover. And I agree that mental / social / emotional stressors seem somehow much harder to deal with than physical ones. Weird. I hope your recovery continues well, dear Q.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Agreed! Lovely to hear from you (I have been wondering, and the details are most welcome), and to hear that you are, per usual, so wisely taking this time away from work to rest and figure out more ways to support yourself with your busy job. I see your self-care and self-love growing in leaps and bounds. It is encouraging to me on my path, too.

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  3. Hi Rachel, you know, in terms of self-care and self-love, I’ve made a lot of progress over the past year. I have plenty of ups and downs still (well-documented on this blog), but a few principles are solidly in place now: 1) it’s possible to heal from trauma; 2) I deserve to be healthy and whole, and 3) I’m committed to helping myself heal. That’s kind of amazing, you know?

    I texted something like that to E. recently, and she texted back some unreadable emoji and “that’s me doing a happy dance!”

    I know you are on this same path, and it makes me happy to see it in your posts. xxoo

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  4. I’m glad to hear you are healing so well from surgery! I’m always impressed that you use your time off to find ways to improve your self care. It’s really amazing, and says so much about your perseverance. It’s really good to see a post from you. Xx💜

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  5. what a way you have with words. i lolled at some of this, especially the bits about big bang and buddha, and the drug induced thoughts, and the breaking bad line! so glad your recoverys going well though. XX

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  6. wow. that is a lot to accomplish in a day. thanks for keeping us all informed (and I really mean that!). Hope your recovery continues smoothly and glad you are taking the time you need to heal.

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