Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Free speed

Heads up...this post gets a little graphic, so if you are squeamish, close this link now!

At 6am on Monday morning, I checked into UBC hospital for the first surgery of my life (wisdom teeth don't count!).  As someone who spends countless hours training and exercising to be in top form, the prospect of being operated on was pretty I was more than a little jittery when my sister dropped me off.  Mantra of the day:  be tough.

The issue?  A uterine fibroid, not so affectionately named Freddie, that had grown to about 8cm in diameter.  These kind of tumors are typically not malignant, but can cause issues if they grow too too big.  For a small and active person, toting around a tumor the size of an orange is pretty damned uncomfortable, never mind racing full distance triathlon.  Freddie was a real jerk and had to go.  
Freddie, the jerk.  Live and in person.  Buh-bye!
After a number of false starts and second opinions over the past few years, I was fortunate to find an incredible female surgeon, well-regarded in the field and extremely understanding.  In particular, she was open to trying minimally invasive laparoscopic procedures and she was appreciatively sympathetic to my preference to continue to have the option of having children.  Of course, in medicine there are no guarantees, but she promised to do her best.     

The nurses, residents and medical staff at UBC hospital were incredible.  I was made to feel at ease  right up to the point that they walked me into the OR, and for that I am so appreciative.  Needles, IVs and operating rooms = scary.    

When I woke up in recovery, I had several nurses fussing around me and there were tubes everywhere.  I asked the resident if everything went fine, and she told me there were complications that forced the surgeon to abandon the laparoscopic procedure and perform a laparotomy instead (aka abdominal surgery).  I was later told that I had lost nearly a litre of blood during the procedure (about 1/4 of my blood volume), which is needless to say a pretty good reason to get 'er done the old fashioned way.  The good news? Freddie is gone.  

So while the recovery will take a little longer than I expected, I am grateful to be back home and starting the process of getting strong.  Being healthy is truly a gift, and I am so very, very excited to spend my days going forward without that jerk Freddie hanging around.  He was never a very good running partner. 

So, in closing this chapter and starting the road to recovery, I thought this Freddie-related clip was so very appropriate.  To Freddie the bad-ass fibroid, I bid you adieu and eff you!

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