birds

Friday, October 26, 2012

I Ruined My Body

My guilt factor is sky high lately.  What if I hadn't had that surgery, what if I'd had another doctor do the such-and-such surgery, what if I'd had no surgeries at all?  What if I'd factored in my health first?

It's just overwhelming to live in constant pain, pain that's a direct result of (in)fertility treatments.  (Side note:  I feel like an imposter saying "fertility" treatments because I really only went through one medicated treatment cycle). 

When we were TTC, any guilty feelings were centered around what I wasn't doing:  not eating/drinking the correct things, exercising too much or too little.  I shouldn't have eaten that goat cheese! I probably killed my embryo!  Etc.  Or feeling wishing I had started treatments earlier.

I can't stop thinking lately about all the infertility-related choices I've made in the past few years.  I chose the crappy RE to do my initial IF workup.  Since the crappy doc suggested a laparoscopy to see how "messed up" I was inside (his words) and I didn't trust him to do it, I chose an outside endometriosis-specialized physician to do the surgery.  During the lap, the endo guy also did a hysteroscopy and said my septum wasn't large enough to be a fertility issue, and he didn't see any other problems.

Enter the good RE, who eventually found scar tissue in my ute and thought my septum was an issue after all.  Two surgeries later, my life was turned completely upside down by chronic pain.  I don't blame her surgical skills—I blame the damn balloon—but my life changed dramatically on 3/9/12.

I'm trying to forgive myself for everything.  For not seeing the good RE first, for not doing more research before I started having surgeries.  For trusting that any type of hysteroscopic surgery was minor.  After all, I'd had laparoscopic surgery already.  Why would I flinch at something less major than that?  It's like doing injectable IUIs after Clomid ones; eh, not that big a leap.

Now that my TTC chapter is closed, I can look at it as a whole and see the flaws and horror more clearly.  I'm not wrapped up in next steps and cycle days, which is AWESOME, don't get me wrong.  But reflecting on that period of time is rough, and I guess the TTC chapter is being drawn out in a way because I'm still physically feeling the effects of my treatments.

I feel like I've ruined my body.  I mentioned on my last post that I used to run half marathons.  Running was a huge part of my life throughout my 20's.  I ran 5Ks, 10Ks, and half marathons.  Before that, in high school and earlier, I was as dancer.  In my 30's, I took up yoga and practice almost daily.

That's where I was, physically speaking, on 3/9/12:  lean and mean from many hours of yoga.  I felt great when I practiced and was strong enough to do some pretty tough poses.  I was flexible for the first time in my life.

I can't even take a walk now.  I risked my body's wrath today by walking for about 20 min at lunchtime and I'll probably suffer the consequences this weekend.  I feel completely defective and it's embarassing to talk about; how do you tell your coworkers that you can't walk because your pelvic floor muscles are fucked up?  Who wants to say "pelvic" anywhere in the vicinity of work?

My body is mushy now and 5 pounds heavier.  My pants are getting tighter and tighter.  Surprising fact:  if you don't move around at all and keep eating as if you do, you gain weight.  I want to move.  I crave exercise.  I want to stretch and be flexible again and not feel my hamstring clamp up when I put up my leg while shaving.  I've tried stretching; I really have.  It turns out that your pelvic floor muscles are connected to EVERYTHING and hence EVERYTHING hurts to stretch.  Want to stretch out my pinkie finger?  Can't.  Connected to the pelvic floor.  My PT tells me to do what I comfortably can but not to do anything painful at this point, so I'm left with nothing to do except a couple of measly exercises she gave me.

So, to summarize:  my lady parts are fucked up because we tried too hard to get pregnant (see what I mean?  Impossible to talk about without getting into areas all sexual-like).  I hate my body and hate that I ignored the warning signs.  I already had pelvic pain before all the IF shenanigans started.  Why did I screw things up more down there?  Blah.

*****
Hmm, that was all over the place and not at all what I set out to write.  Funny how that works.

I'm tired of the headaches.  TENS helps with them so we're going steady again.  The headaches almost make me feel cross-eyed at moments, like I can't focus for a second because of the intensity.  It's really weird, but I can tell that the headaches are part of the neuropathic pain, and my doc concurred.  It's like the pain comes up from my pelvis (hate that word and must find a new one), through my core and spreads out in my head.  Caffeine and painkillers don't touch it.  Lyrica is pretty much the only thing that works, that and TENS.  I'm going through 9V batteries like a fiend.  It turns out that rechargeable 9Vs aren't as readily available or as high a quality as you might think.

In the interest of ending on a high note, I had a major victory today.  <drumroll> ...I did not cry at a coworker's pregnancy announcement.  I cried at her last one but shrugged off this one like a champ.  It helped that my pregdar went off big-time when I saw her this morning...it wasn't her body, it was her smug pregginess.  And I'm sure I will love the upcoming meetings when she will turn work-related conversations into something about her baby. 

But anyway.  No tears!  Victory! :)

Have a great weekend!

23 comments:

  1. Infertility can take so much away from us. Sending you such a big hug. I am so sorry for all that you've gone through. Congrats on that victory today!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much--appreciate the hug!!

      Delete
  2. Oh dear. I am sorry that you're going through all that.. as silly and small as it sounds, that really blows. :(

    smug pregginess. Oh so familiar.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "It blows" doesn't sound silly at all. Most of the time all I can say about it is "this sucks." So yeah, it does. :\

      Delete
  3. I think at some point many of us regret or question our decisions. I know I question my decision to put us in so much debt over IF. I wonder why I didn't just find a way to live childless and be happy with my decision. You can't turn back time and have a do-over and the thought of not trying your best for something you really want is hard. We try our hardest in all other aspects of life (work, family, hobbies), why shouldn't we try to achieve our dreams in this area too? Don't be too hard on yourself. You had no idea this would be the outcome and just did what you thought was best at the time.
    I do understand though...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah. Usually I don't fret too much about my decisions, but recently I keep wanting to go back in time and redo some things. Not have that last surgery, ugh.

      Delete
  4. Hindsight sucks sometimes, and it's also not as clear as people make it out to be. You only know what you know when you first make decisions... how can you know what will transpire afterwards? Don't beat yourself up. I have lots of hope that you will be up learning to surf or traveling to Australia or something fun in the future. Hopefully, you will look back on this time as a dark time that is over... very soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. :) I'm still pushing for our surf vacation + lessons to be in Hawaii rather than nearby, though. We've gotta do it right!

      Delete
  5. Have you thought about doing the couch to 5k to strengthen yourself? Having fibromyalgia I know about those my pinkie finger hurts so I can't move my leg muscles. Hoping you have a better days soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I haven't been given the green light from my PT to do anything that strenuous. I'm still at the point where taking a walk can give me pelvic pain that lasts for days. :(

      Delete
  6. I hope you are having a better day with the pain soon and i want to say congrats on the not crying victory. Seriously, sometimes even being able to do something as "simple" as that should be applauded. We have all shed too many tears.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, we shouldn't overlook the little victories! Thanks. :)

      Delete
  7. So many things we cannot change or could never anticipate....fate did this to you,you did not do it to yourself. I've heard stories of a couple of people with pelvic pain, and its utter unrelenting hell. Most chronic pain syndromes are and they take over your life till you can't do much else. I lived with one once (carpal tunnel heading towards chronic regional pain syndrome) for a month once and it had taken over till it was all I could think about.

    I think the one thing you should focus on, and not give up on, is trying to fix this, because it CAN be fixed, you have to find the right doctors, or get your doctor to try something else for you. In this regard--- I can try to give you the email of one of the pelvic pain patients I know, if you are interested. She had a pretty awful time of it and her quality of life was ruined for years, I think, but today she is pain free. Let me know if you want it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Jay, thanks so much for your comment. I'll be emailing you!

      Delete
  8. All I can say is how sorry I am and how much I wish your pain (all kinds) would end.

    ReplyDelete
  9. It sucks when THAT is the big victory of the day (even though that is a victory). I wish that one day your pain will disappear and never return :(

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am so sorry that TTC has wreaked havoc on your body - on top of the whole despair of the whole infertility thing, chronic pain is just downright unfair. What is the solution to this? Is this a "time will heal" type thing, a "more surgeries required" type thing or a "must live with this forever" type thing?

    You're in my thoughts - you are not alone in any of this.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Regrets and "what ifs" are a sonofabitch and add so much pain to already crappy circumstances. As I feel like I've tried to tell myself and others a million times the past few years... you did the best you could with the information you had at the time. I know that doesn't help or change anything, but I hope that you continue to find healing for all of your pain, physical and mental, because you deserve none of it.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I nominated you for a liebster! You can check it out on my blog :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. oh I love this! Thank you so much for visiting my blog at.I think my readers will really infertility Australia appriciate all the hard work that when into this post.

    ReplyDelete