Womb Warrior

My gynecologist wants my uterus. So do I. Let's see who wins.

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I could DIE!?!

Yesterday I had the pleasure of talking to an Ob/Gyn I met via Twitter. She was initially supportive and encouraged my trusting my gut about not getting a hysterectomy. Then I told her the largest fibroid’s dimensions. 

Apparently, there’s a risk of death for people carrying large fibroids. I’m very roughly paraphrasing, but she said that if something that size began to degenerate, it could become infected, and I’d get sepsis and possibly die. She made it clear that if her own sister had the tumors I did, she’d advise hysterectomy for her, too, as the remaining uterus wouldn’t be recognizable or functional. The only reason to fight for your womb, she said, was if you were planning on using it to have a child. 

I don’t know what I’m going to do. My gut feeling, honestly, is that there’s nothing right about having a hysterectomy to get rid of my fibroids. Because I live in a small town, the procedures available to me are limited. The local hospital doesn’t do UFE or laparoscopic myomectomy, so my only option here is hysterectomy. When I discussed going to a larger city for either of the aforementioned procedures, my gynecologist said that I wasn’t a candidate for them because the uterus would be damaged by the cutting of the largest fibroid. 

I’m not being hard-headed for no reason. I’m a single mother. A single mother who grew up in the foster care system and has no close relatives who could come be with my son while I was in surgery or recovering. I’ve met some very kind people in my lifetime, but I would be alone during this and after. My son’s former babysitter, when I nearly died from staph infection over a year ago, said she’d be happy to keep him if I had to be admitted to a hospital long-term. She lives 4 hours away now. I was unofficially adopted by a family who I was sure would love me for life, but when I called them the morning my water broke 7 weeks early, they told me never to call them before 8 am again. I don’t have anyone that I would dare ask to help me with my son, because given what I go through now alone, I’m certain I don’t have anyone who actually would help. So no, I don’t have the luxury of spending a few days in the hospital or coming home and comfortably recovering. 

I did some research about sepsis from fibroids, and the one thing I’m choosing to agree with was a comment from a woman who said that our bodies self-correct fibroids via calcification. That they degenerate to bone so our bodies don’t reject them, or something like that. If I’ve survived all I have - and believe me, fibroid tumors are a cakewalk compared to what I’ve dealt with in my life - only to succumb to a tumor, then so be it. 

This blog is now closed. 

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Side Effects

I’ll be posting things that are out of the normal range for me and labeling those posts “side effects”, even though they may be unrelated to the iodine. 

I feel very blah today, and it may not be just because I found out that the largest fibroid was “peripherally calcified.” That’s scary, though. Tumors turning to stone in my uterus? *shudder*

It’s cloudy where I am, and I haven’t had any sunlight for days, but I still feel like I’m uncharacteristically blue right now. Almost PMS-y, but no inexplicable tears. 

Additionally, I had a handful of cherries a little while ago, then I violently vomited them up. That’s happened before, though. I wonder why a person would be unable to digest fruit? Someone must know. But I’m really hungry, and I’m craving dough. Raw dough. 

I’m definitely not mentally clear today. Not even close. My head feels very full and inaccessible. That makes sense probably to no one but me, but it’s all I got. My apologies for these recent posts being rambling and/or incoherent, but I need to leave proof. 

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June 13, 2011

I picked up the disk and report of my ultrasound, which was done on 4/27/11. Up until now, I relied on what my gynecologist said it reported, (I was seen by her on 5/10/11). 

As I previously wrote, she told me that the largest fibroid was one foot long, spanning from my cervix to my chest. Admittedly, I don’t really know how to read the images that are on the disk, but the report, which I pasted in full as its own post, included nothing that was close to 30 cm, which would be 12 inches. The radiologist did comment about not being able to get one of them all the way on the screen while I was on the table, but the report doesn’t say that there are any that he couldn’t measure. So I’m going to assume the report is correct in saying that my uterus measures 17.9 x 10.7 x 8.4 cm, and the largest tumor “measures 10.7 cm in greatest dimension and is peripherally calcified.” I’m not sure that a calcified tumor can shrink, but I’ll try to find out.

I’m also not sure how I feel about my gynecologist right now. I guess it’s possible she knows something that isn’t on the report, but I feel like she was trying to alarm me into agreeing to surgery. I’ll let that go, though. 

I feel a bit overwhelmed right now. I think it was the words “peripherally calcified” that did it. It immediately made me think “who do you think you are?” Like, I feel like I’ve stepped far, far out of my lane, and have more confidence than I deserve. The “who do you think you are” question is what keeps me from trying most things that I want to do. I’ve been able to get past it in many cases by learning to shrink into others’ expectations of how I should behave, then taking little stabs at my goals when they aren’t looking. Not sure if that relates to how I’m approaching self-healing, but sabotaging myself with bad food is one of the ways I shrink. 

I literally can picture a group of women staring at me with disgust, their uteri in their hands, silently asking “who do you think you are?” They’ve terrorized me most of my life, and though the image is purely made-up, I’ve had them appear in the flesh many, many times. Maybe they’ve shape-shifted into “peripherally calcified” fibroids this time. Heifers. I’m done pretending to be un-fuckin’-fabulous because it might upset those who aren’t at peace with themselves. Hmm, am I really? Because if I were…. Well, let’s see. 

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Exam Report

Report Details

Patient Name:

{REDACTED}

Procedure Date:

4/27/2011

Patient ID:

{REDACTED} Patient Group: NY-CDI Date of Birth:

3/2———-

Procedure:

US PELVIC Procedure ID:

17868 Accession: 36677 Referring Physician:

{REDACTED} Facility: NY-CDI Date Transcribed:

4/27/2011 Reporting Physician:

{REDACTED}

Report Text


EXAMINATION: TRANSABDOMINAL AND TRANSVAGINAL PELVIC ULTRASOUND.

TECHNIQUE: Real-time imaging of the pelvis was carried out both transabdominally and transvaginally in a systematic fashion.




RESULTS: The uterus is markedly enlarged overall bowing to numerous uterine leiomyoma at least 4 in number. The overall uterine dimensions measure 17.9 x 10.7 x 8.4 CM. The largest of these myomata is subserosal in location arising from the uterine fundus and measures 10.7 cm in greatest dimension and is peripherally calcified. The largest intramural myoma arises within the lower uterine segment posterior wall and measures 5.2 CM in greatest dimension.

Endometrial thickness and architecture is normal. The endometrial thickness measures 0.7 CM.

Each ovary is of normal size configuration and architecture. The left ovary measures 2.5 x 3.3 x 2.3 CMS in its dimensions. The right ovary measures 3.1 x 2.7 x 2.6 CM in its dimensions.

There are no adnexal masses nor any abnormal fluid collections within the pelvis.




CONCLUSIONS: ENLARGED MYOMATOUS UTERUS

Signed by: {REDACTED}

Date Signed:

4/27/2011 11:37:18 AM

 

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Anonymous asked: I hope that you're able to heal your fibroids and save your womb holistically. I think Dr. Northrup is amazing and I've loaned that book out to several friends.

Wow, thanks so much. I hope I’m able to do it, too. 

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Back to Life

For the past few months, maybe longer, I’ve had terrible lower back pain. Some of my tumors rest against the nerves at the end of my spine (or thereabouts), and this has made movement difficult. A few days ago, I noticed a feeling of more access to my abs. Before, if I tried to do a tummy roll or isolation, I’d just feel a big obstacle. The other day, I was able to do a teeny roll, which means there’s more room in there. 

Today, the stiffest part of my back felt thatmuch looser, and right now, it doesn’t hurt at all. Same thing with my knee, which has been extremely tight. No pain there at all. I’ve lost a few pounds, but that could be because I’ve been in bed with the allergy/sinus headache/congestion stuff, and mostly ate popsicles. Today I wanted to exercise, which is a nice development. Who knows, maybe tomorrow I actually will. :P

I’ve decided that the sickness this week could be my body detoxing, though others have told me it’s a horrible allergy season for them, too. Whatever it is, I want it done. 

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Day 19

Dr. Christiane Northrup (Oprah’s gynecologist, and author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom), has an interesting take on fibroids. She said that they could represent creativity within us that we haven’t “given birth” to, and to examine the relationships or jobs that we were putting our energy into that didn’t deserve us. Further:

If you have fibroids, ask yourself the following questions: What are the creations within me that I want to put out in the world before I’m no longer here? If anything at all were possible, what would my life look like? If I had six months to live, what relationships would I release from my life immediately? What relationships would I give more of my time and attention to? What relationships truly feed and nourish me? Which ones drain my energy? Write your answers in a journal. Discuss them with supportive friends. Deep within you, you have all the answers you need. You just need to be open to hearing them. (source)

In addition to iodine, raw veganism, and (one day, I promise) coffee enemas, I’ve been taking Dr. Northrup’s advice. I see the world’s most amazing therapist, and am taking my creative aspirations seriously. As for dead relationships, I’ve done really well at excising abusive, draining, or otherwise unhealthy people and unions from my life, and can honestly say there isn’t anyone in my life that doesn’t deserve to be there. That’s not to say that there aren’t people who may take advantage of me or one day hurt me, but I’m secure in my ability to handle whatever may come. I don’t know that every woman with fibroids has repressed or suppressed dreams, or are in lifeless jobs or relationships, but I do know that being chronically dissatisfied or unhappy is not healthy. As above, so below. If my thoughts and gut feelings about my life, job, and relationships are ill, why would my body be healthy?

I’m not saying that every ailing person would get better if they smiled more, but that I’m not going to attempt to heal and nourish my reproductive center without also working to create a healthier me overall. If it happens to be what keeps fibroids from recurring, brilliant. 

Filed under fibroids