• October 24, 2014

Going under the knife so we can be parents

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Posted: Friday, January 31, 2014 4:30 am

You spend your entire carefree youth trying not to see two lines on a take-home pregnancy test, but the minute you want them to appear, they are nowhere to be found.

At my last check-up with my new civilian doctor, he nonchalantly mentioned putting me under and cutting me open to see what’s going on, to hopefully increase our chances at becoming parents.

I’m pretty sure he said other poignant things during that appointment, but after I heard the word “surgery” my brain stopped functioning and the word echoed in my head.

I don’t even remember how I got home that day — that’s how much of a daze I was in.

The last time I had surgery, which happened to be my first, was back in 2010 when I was living in Hawaii. My husband was on a mission in Thailand and I had no direct way to contact him. I had no friends and my family was an ocean and an entire continent away. So I drove myself to the emergency room pretty much lying down — low-rider style.

After I had been examined, the doctor said my appendix was on the verge of rupturing and it was “go time.”

I had no time to think. It was going to happen whether I liked it or not.

I was about to undergo my first surgery, alone and in a foreign military hospital that I had heard nothing but horror stories about.

I was a hot mess.  

The only way to communicate with my husband was via email. By the time the doctors drugged me, I still hadn’t been able to reach him. I was living in a nightmare. When I woke up from surgery, alive and well, the nurses informed me both my husband and my mother were en route. An hour after he arrived, I was discharged and we drove to the airport to pick up my mom and her travel companion, my 90-year-old grandmother. She’s a tank, I tell ya. I hope to be as lucky as her one day.

Fast forward a bit. When my current doctor dropped the surgery bomb on me two weeks ago, that’s the only thing I have been able to think about lately. The first time, I had no choice. This time, it’s weighing on me.

I had kind of pushed the procedure to the back of my mind when the hospital called to get some information from me. They asked me the routine things: My name, age, date of birth and Social Security number. But what really made my heart skip a beat was when the nurse asked me if I wanted a priest present and if I had a living will.

Hold the phone. I thought this was routine and no big deal, but now you are throwing around words like “wills” and “priests.” Whoa.

With any surgery, there are risks and you never know when you will become that statistic of who doesn’t wake up.

I have been uneasy about hospitals, doctors and surgeries since my aunt was murdered. Some people call it medical malpractice, but I call it murder. She went in for a routine surgery and her doctor allowed a medical student to perform the procedure.

Well, he flubbed, cut her large intestine, leaving her unable to eat food for the rest of her life, along with several other life-altering doozies. As a result of that hand slip, she died a few years later in 1997.

Ever since that fateful day, I have developed a mistrust of both doctors and the justice system and whenever I go into a hospital, chills shoot down my spine.

It’s not a do-or-die type of surgery, but it’s designed to increase our odds of conceiving. A necessary evil, if you will.

This future kid of ours had better appreciate what I am enduring to bring him or her into this world.

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