It was 4 weeks ago tomorrow that I had my big surgery…and I’m finally back!! Whoo Hoo!
Yes, for the past month The Dose of Reality has been held afloat 100% by Ashley! Did you enjoy a post on an interesting subject that really made you think? Ashley wrote it. Did you chuckle at a funny reply to a comment you made? Yep…all Ashley. Since early September, the Dose GIRLS have actually been the Dose GIRL… until now! We are plural again, baby! WOOT!
Here’s the brief rundown. I was having a lot of abdominal pain. They found a mass on my ovary. They were worried about it and had a gynecologic oncologist do my surgery just in case. The surgery turned out to be more involved and tricker than was anticipated, but the mass was benign. Yay!
And now I’m back! I’m not quite 100% yet, but I can now sit at a table and type (and more importantly spend time on Pinterest THANK GOD), so life is getting back to normal!
Until this experience, I’d never had a major surgery. I’ve learned a few things that I want to share with you! (And also, Ashley deserves to have the day off.) So without further ado:
1. Watching all the television you want…yay! In regular life, it can be tricky to get all your TV shows in while the dishes and laundry are piling up. Kids get huffy when you’re late to carpool because you had to see if Pharrell won that 4 chair turn on The Voice. Well, nobody gives you the side-eye for watching the sixth hour of a The Golden Girls marathon on the Hallmark Channel when you are post surgical! Heck, people are happy and proud of you for just staying awake! For a TV addict, it’s a dream situation!
2. People are so nice to you! I am blessed to have wonderful friends and family in my life, but MAN do people step up when you have surgery! Who knew?! My folks came to help take care of the children…for weeks. They didn’t even bat an eye! My kids were sweet and didn’t even fight at all (in front of me)! Friends called all the time just to check in and brought me things like books, flowers, plants, and casseroles! Love, free childcare, family harmony (in front of me), presents, and food? SCORE!
4. Showing off your hideous scars! Everyone pretends like they don’t want to see your wounds, but you know they do. THEY DO. When you peel back the clotted gauze to reveal your scars in all their bruised and crimson glory, people really tend to have a reaction…
As the mom of a teenage boy, I can tell you it’s *really* satisfying to be the one able to gross him out for a change! HA!
5. You are medically ordered not to exercise! You heard me. A doctor has FORBIDDEN me to exercise! I’m not allowed to do aerobic exercise until 12 weeks post op! Heck, for the next 4 weeks I’m still not even allowed to carry anything over 5 pounds! You guys are all supposed to exercise daily to improve and maintain your health, but not me! SUCKERS!
1. Watching all the television you want…ugh! Like people who smoke 10 packs of cigarettes back-to-back to break their habit, all that television is a double edged sword. Thanks to TBS, I have logged hundreds of hours of Seinfeld, Friends, and now have entire seasons of Frasier committed to memory (Remember when Niles and Daphne finally got together? I do. I saw it last week.) YIKES! It’s a LOT of TV time. The new seasons of all my fall shows have started, and now my eyes water and twitch every time a television comes into my direct field of vision. I even start to shake a little bit! I am going to have to DVR a lot of Dancing With The Stars and The Amazing Race until I can work my way back to normal.
2. Laughing is no laughing matter! Forget about sit ups! This experience has taught me to appreciate the amount of work my abs do on a daily basis just so I can enjoy a good laugh from time to time… and also the occasional cough…and not to be greedy…but a deep breath now and then. I completely understood this on a theoretical basis, but I now recognize what my abs bring to the table in a whole new way.
3. Surgery is expensive! I sure don’t have to worry about what we are doing with all of our disposable income for the foreseeable future.
4. Going to the bathroom is a two man job! Well, a one woman (me) and one man (my husband) job anyway. For the past four decades, I’ve pretty much considered going to the bathroom an independent thing (except when I needed someone to hold back my hair in college, of course). I knew I was going to need help with some things after surgery, but it didn’t dawn on me that something as basic as getting on and off the commode was going to be one of those things. I will never take self-toileting for granted again!
5. Pants…I’m not wearing them. Although I am feeling good enough now to get out a bit, I am not exactly presentable for the general public. You see, one of my incisions falls right on the waistband of every pair of pants (or skirt) I own. I really can’t stand to have fastened pants on my body for more than 10 or 15 minutes at a time. Obviously this includes shorts and jeans, but even my beloved yoga pants are dicey. You know it’s serious when yoga pants are uncomfortable. As a result, I’ve been writing this whole blog post pant-less. I hope you aren’t scandalized.
Have I missed any obvious pros and cons here? Do you think a leg or shoulder surgery is worse? Can you help me think of a way I can go to Starbucks pant-less and not end up in jail? Let me know in the comments!