9thNovember

Looking for direction

I really liked the doctor I saw yesterday.  Very “down to earth” and open.  Great sense of humor.  Posters of animal butts all over his office.  I’m glad I went for a second opinion.  He was very much against doing surgery and did not think it would help.  In fact, he told me it would most likely make matters worse.  So I’m glad I went.  I’ve been given a medicinal routine to follow for three weeks and then I have to go back.  I asked him why I’m having trouble and he said, “You have nerve damage.  Not sure why.  As we say in my line of work…Sh*t happens and sometimes we just don’t know why.”  (Hee hee!  Snort! fart(?))

At any rate, the medicinal route is not going to be easy.  I have to avoid drinking anything for two hours, take a couple of pills with a tiny sip of water and then not drink anything for another two hours.  Twice daily.  That’s eight hours a day that I can’t have anything to drink.  I woke up at 2:00 a.m. and took two pills last night.  Don’t know how I’m going to do it today.  Maybe nothing after lunch….????  Anyway, right now my coffee tastes great.

I’m feeling a lot better about things.  Going to try to break the sorry ass (pun intended) routine I’ve been following.  I think I deserve a reward today.  I’m going to be good about eating healthy and reward myself by visiting the new JC Penney’s outlet that just opened after work today.  I need clothes for the cruise.  We leave in ten days!

8thNovember

Bye, Bye, BD!

Today is a teacher training day.  Friday ended the trimester and tomorrow starts a new one with new classes and new students.  I have to say…there are a couple of kids I won’t miss.  I had a couple who required full-time babysitting last trimester at the expense of all the other students in the class.  I mean, I seriously could not take my eyes off them for 30 seconds that they weren’t instigating a fight or messing with another student.

I’m hoping to meet Barbara for lunch.  Barbara was our school librarian and she and I shared space because my classes meet in the library.  She retired October 29th and it hasn’t been quite the same.  I didn’t realize how much she was a part of my everyday routine until she was gone and I miss talking to her and sharing the day. 

After school, I have to see a new doctor for a second opinion on my butt.  (”Yeah, I agree with Dr. G.  It’s ugly and saggy.”)  How exciting is that??? I fully intend to grill this guy and ask every single question I can think of.

And finally, if everything goes right, I’ll be heading over to Sistah Pam’s for dinner around 5:00.  Pam makes a pretty good pie crust and has tackled the job of teaching the rest of the Sistahs how to make a decent pie.  (Can she make a cherry pie, Billy Boy, Billy Boy?  Can she make a cherry pie, Darling Billy?)  None of us are able to make a cherry pie, Billy.  Or any other kind of pie unless we have Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts on hand. 

And so…Jana, Pam, Elsie, LeeAnn and I will all be making pies for our monthly dinner tonight.  Jana is doing Pizza Pie appetizers, I’m doing a chicken pot pie for the main course and the rest are doing dessert pies.  Not exactly a healthy dinner but we should all finish the evening with the possibility of catching Billy Boy at some future date.

6thNovember

Pretty Serious Stuff

“Hey, Sistah Pat!  Long time, no see!  What’s been going on?”

Lots of bad stuff.  Stuff I don’t want to think about, much less deal with.  Remember that butt issue I mentioned a couple years ago?  The occasional bowel incontinence?  The “condition” resulting from the common practice of doing an episiotomy on just about every woman who had a baby in the 70s. Yeah?  Well, it doesn’t go away.  It just gets worse.  TMI?  Too bad.  If you don’t want to know about it, better turn around and leave.

It doesn’t get better.  The occasional minor(?) (as if any loss of control could be called minor) bowel incontinence just gets worse.  More frequent.  Less controllable.  This last year, it’s gotten to where it’s making a significant impact on my life.  I wear a pad all the time.  Have you noticed that I don’t get in the hot tub anymore?  Not that I have accidents all that often.  It’s just that I never know when I’ll have one and can’t feel them when I do.  So I have to be careful.  I’ve become familiar with medical procedures like anal manometrys, proctographys and proctosigmoidoscopys.  Not the kind of procedures you want to talk about. 

And now…it’s just become too contolling.  It determines whether or not I’ll go places with friends.  It interferes with my job.  It keeps me from exercising.  It keeps me from eating fruits, salads, and vegetables.  It’s gotten to the point where I stay pretty close to home and don’t do much of anything.  High fiber diet?  I don’t think so.  The consequences are not pretty.

So I finally scheduled surgery for December 20th.  I figured I’d have two weeks to recover.  My doctor said I would be in the hospital five days but she might let me go home after four since it was Christmas.  She said I might want to take an additional week off work so I decided to do some online research to see what the normal recovery time is.  I mean, really, three weeks off work?  I just don’t do that.  I usually bounce back pretty fast and I thought five days in the hospital sounded ridiculous.  I searched “sphincteroplasty” and the stuff I discovered scares me to death.  I found out that the success rate is only about 49% and that the surgery often makes the problem a lot worse instead of better.  I discovered that the recovery time is three to four months and most people recommend being off work at least 6 weeks.  I read of cases where women had the surgery three and four times and it got worse each time and they finally wound up having a cholostomy.  And I didn’t find a single post or writeup from anyone who had a complete recovery and was glad they’d had the procedure. Most of them seemed happy that they wound up with just occasional leaks and flatulance and that’s where I am right now before having surgery.

My doctor told me this is a problem affecting about 10% of the women in my age group who had children.  Where the Hell are all these women?  I don’t know anyone who has this condition.  I don’t know anyone who’s had a sphincteroplasty.

I cancelled my surgery.  I made an appointment with another specialist this coming Monday.  I’m not interested in trying to diet or exercise right now.  If I eat a lot of fiber, fruit, and veggies, I’m setting myself up for problems.  If I exert myself with exercise, I have a leak to deal with.  And we’re not talking urine.  So I try to eat healthy.  What does that mean?  Without the massive amounts of fiber, fruits and veggies, I’m hungry all the time and I can’t even have a damn cigarette.

Okay, there you go.  Not the kind of upbeat, cheery post I’d like to do but, at least, I’ve laid it all out there and you know why I’m just not that into losing weight right now.  I think I’m doing okay to stay off the cigarettes and keep from going postal.

5thNovember

So much love…

You guys are so wonderful.  I’m sitting here at work, pulled up 3FC to get a recipe for a friend and see all these wonderful, supportive comments and a genuine outpouring of love and support.

Things have not been good.  I kept dieting and exercising and either maintaining or actually gaining weight.  It’s depressing.  I finally decided not to look at the scales so I haven’t.  But then, I tend to slack off the healthy living if I’m not checking my weight so I don’t know what to do. Then I broke my toe…again…and I’ve been hobbling around in a post surgical boot for a week eating pain pills and desperately wishing that I’d never quit smoking.  But I did.  And I’m still on that wagon even if I’m getting so fat I can’t fit my A between my F and my T.

Thank you for caring about me.  Forgive me for being selfish and not communicating as much as I should.  I’m struggling and it’s so much easier to just stick my fingers in my ears and sing “la, la, la” day after day after day than it is to get back on track.  It’s easier to work like a dog and drag my butt in the door at 6:00 p.m., turn on the TV, prop up my foot, and wait for DH to bring me a slice of pizza or a huge plate full of lasagna and bread so I can whine about how miserable I am.

I’ll be back tomorrow.  I promise.