What’s Done, Can Never Be Undone

So maybe I underestimated my need to write.

My appointment with my OBGYN served its purpose; I got the options and advice I came for. I left the office feeling worse than when I went in. I haven’t seen anyone in my OBGYN’s office since I had my IUD placed, 6 weeks after I had Ava, so they have no clue what’s gone on for the last 4 years. The doctor I saw is one that I saw often during my pregnancy, so I was moderately comfortable talking to him and giving him a little back story to explain the concerns that brought me in. Nice guy, personable, knowledgeable, and yet, completely clueless. I kind of felt bad for him because I’m sure he was not prepared for what he got. Here’s what happened:

I explain that I’m looking for a permanent form of birth control and want to discuss the options and get his opinion. He casually says, “You guys are done already?” …yeah…we’re done already, and not by choice. I was vague and said that I have an Autoimmune Disorder and was advised (my multiple sources) that having another baby wasn’t really an option. He asks which disorder, I tell him, and he gives me a blank look like, “What the fuck is that?”. He asked if I was recently diagnosed and Dan tells him that shortly after I had Ava, my body went haywire and that it’s gone downhill from there. Now he’s a bit more curious and asks if “it” is like Lupus. …And we’re off… Now I have to give a brief MCTD lesson. I say my schpeel [three diseases in one package, yada, yada] and mention that I’ve been on chemotherapy for, Jesus, almost two years now and I’ll be on it indefinitely. As expected, he gives me this, “Oh, c’mon” look as he throws his hands behind his head and leans back in his office chair. Takes a few seconds of awkward silence before we jump right into the different birth control options.

First option: Vasectomy…nope, next. Dan says that that’s what he wants, and I shush him and ask what other options there are. I really did not want to get into the reasons why, I just wanted a change of subject. Nope. The men start talking now. Doc says that he had it done, and his wife is on XYZ birth control, gives a brief overview of the surgery and recovery. Blah, blah, shut up already. Done? K, good. No, still not an option. Then, doc asks why I’m so against it. Here we fucking go. I was already uncomfortable and agitated, and now this. I said that I didn’t want Dan to have surgery and push for information the next option. He got the hint and we moved on from vasectomies.

Second option: Tubal ligation (getting your “tubes tied”). He talks about the methods they could use, (putting clips on the fallopian tubes, removing the tubes, or ablation) and we go over the risks, success rate, blah blah. I was like, “Let’s go ahead and get this bitch wrapped up”. I mentioned that I had talked with my Urologist about the topic [and this option] and she wasn’t thrilled about me going under anesthesia again. I have no issue with it, I express that I have no issue with it, and then he agrees that he wouldn’t recommend I ‘go under’. Fucking great. Dan, being the dumbass that he is at times, says to me, “Why do you want to go through another surgery and another recovery? It’s like you’re addicted to surgery.” If looks could kill, his brain would have been all over the window. I didn’t say anything and looked at the doctor in a way, that must have signaled my desire to move on.

Third option: Replace my IUD with another [when mine is due to come out next year]. He said that considering my health, this would be the safest option. I had a feeling that’s what he would advise. I told him that while I’ve had nothing but great experiences with Mirena, I wanted to close the shop and get on with it. He explains that if we did anything other than an IUD, I would get my period again. Um…no thank you? I haven’t had one since 2014 and prior to that, I had an IUD in for, I believe, four years. That’s a long fucking time that I’ve been period free, and it wasn’t something I really wanted to give up. Dan agrees that it’ll be safest and easiest method, I gripe about how painful the insertion and removal process are. And for real, the ONLY time I’ve ever come close to passing out at a doctor’s office, was when I’ve my IUD inserted or removed. Doc says “Yea, but it hurts for like, a minute and that’s it.” Bruh, let me insert something way up in your business, and then we can talk about pain, ok? Ok.

This is where it all falls apart. He’s counting in his head (and fingers which was kinda cute) and tells me, “You’ll only need, five or six of these in your lifetime and then you won’t need any birth control.” Why I said this, I honestly don’t know. I looked at him, “I won’t be around that long”. Dumbass. Doc says, “What? You mean like, you won’t live that long? C’mon.” Dan stepped up to bat and confirmed that what I said, was what I meant, and tells him that he doesn’t understand the gravity of the issue. I felt bad for the doctor, he got completely side swiped and you could tell he was uncomfortable. In that moment, he apologized for my health being what it was, I do my usual, “It’s fine, it’s life.” I avoided eye contact because I knew, in his eyes, I was a fucking ASPCA puppy. Sarah Mc-Fucking-Lachlan music and all. I know I use that reference often, but seriously, that’s the image that always comes to mind. The appointment ended quickly after that, with the agreement that another IUD is the plan. I walked to the car just repeating how I didn’t like being there, and I didn’t see the point in getting another [IUD placed] but I’ll go with it.

I know I’ve made this statement before regarding other medical issues, but I would rather have surgery and get something ‘fixed’, as opposed to putting a fucking Sesame Street Band-Aid on it. I’m not afraid of surgery. The risks don’t bother me. I’m mentally prepared for a painful recovery. Been there, done that. What I am afraid of, is always having a Band-Aid on. Always a reminder of what can’t be ‘fixed’. Scars may represent the same for some, I choose to ignore mine. They’ll always be there. They’re visible. They’re tangible. I’m ok with that. I can cover them. Band-Aids, on the other hand, need constant changing. The wound needs to be exposed. Cleansed. Sloppily covered by a flimsy material printed with images that are meant to soothe you. They don’t soothe me. Nothing does, because nothing can be done with a wound that can’t close. There is no surgery. No recovery. No scar to cover. Only management. Pain management. Symptom management. Just management.

I genuinely can’t find the exact words to describe what it feels like to have your body betray you. You almost feel violated. Like, you’re supposed to be able to rely on your body to work properly, so when it doesn’t, it angers you. You’re disappointment. You feel inadequate. Little moments are more special. Trivial issues aren’t worth the hassle. Your past decisions haunt you. And you’re either grateful or anger when the sun rises in the morning.

I need to get lab work and have my levels (CRP, Sed rate, CBC, BMP, and a Hepatic Panel) checked at the end of the month for my December Rheumatology appointment (sadly, still with my OG). This is my first appointment since my Cellcept dosage was increased a few months ago. I’m nervous. I don’t trust my body to be an accurate indication of how things are operating [inside]. I’ve felt awful and had my labs com back normal, and vice versa. Right now, I feel good and I’m fairly confident that the tests come back normal and I don’t need another dosage increase. An increase wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world, given that I’m not on the typical ‘therapeutic’ dosage, but I don’t need another pill to choke down. It’s going to be a long month.

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