I have named my fibroid Francis. I figure I spend a lot of time thinking about her, she should have a name.
Francis is 7 cm. She sits comfortably (for her) on the top of my uterus. My uterus that measures about 7.6 cm in length. She’s really made herself at home, even embedded herself within the lining. Her particular placement makes it so there is pressure on my bladder, so that’s fun to think you have to pee more frequently than you actually do. So not only is she constantly reminding me she’s there with that nonsense but once a month she makes what has been since I was 13 an unpleasant 4-5 days now an acutely painful 7-9 days.
Why yes, Francis’s presence makes my period worse- the cramps, the bleeding, all of it. Oh the bleeding! Day two requires high alert status, armed with a pack of super tampons and a pad, because Francis really amps it up once she gets her groove. So much so that I wake up in the middle of the night in a panic thanks to the heavy flow. Maxi pads come with a certain level of indignity.
On top of that, I keep thinking what’s the point of keeping my uterus when all it does is give me a monthly reminder that it can’t do the one thing it’s meant to do which is to grow a baby. I am planning on talking to my doctor about having a hysterectomy next year, at least the one that takes the uterus but leaves the ovaries. It was recommended by my gyno-oncologist during the cancer summer just to be extra precautious. Even though my paps have all come back negative with no signs of HPV since my last surgery, the monthly hassle of Frances makes me think “why not?”. Maybe it will help me close that chapter completely. No babies coming out of this body. The end.
That still makes me sad. I don’t know if I will ever not be sad about it. I will never not be surrounded by Facebook ultrasound photo announcements and baby bump Instagram pictures and images of adorable children who resemble their parents. My current coping mechanism is to hide those folks on my social media when it gets to be too much and to visit those sites less. Maybe someday that part won’t be so hard? That’s my hope. It gets a little better as time goes by but it’s still a sharp sting. I continue to worry that people will think I’m a bitch for having to hold my boundaries to protect myself but I’m less and less concerned about what they think. Taking care of me doesn’t mean I don’t care about them or am not happy about their baby.
I’ve been thinking about starting up a support network for couples experiencing this particular situation- those that can’t conceive for whatever reason and are grieving the loss. I don’t know of anyone would want to meet up and talk but I know it helped us to do so with another couple recently and it got me thinking. It’s a pretty overwhelming and lonely place to be. Maybe meeting more people like us would give us community and a sense of belonging?
Anyhow, hello from me and from Francis. (That bitch.)