Soooo my doctor learned that I'd never been to the gynecologist, so he made me an appointment. I was seriously freaked out. I mean, I don't like having things in there at the best of times. And I insisted on it being a woman. Illixim went to a man, and he was so super creepy perky. Totally unsettling.
So I get there, and it's a very tall, very mannish woman who could easily have been trans (even my grandma thought she was a lesbian, but I'll get to that). And she's totally cool with Illixim being there, and she gets that we're a couple and includes her in the discussion and asks what I'm there for. I tell her about the evil period of doom and how what I really want is for it to go away. And she's all "Have you considered a hysterectomy?"
[pause for rant. I really hate the word hysterectomy. You're not removing my hysteria. Which, c'mon, totally loaded word. It's fucking infuriating. Anyway.]
And I'm all, "Derrr...will it MAKE IT STOPPP?!!!!"
So, upshot. Yes. It will make it stop, and there are no non-surgical complications, and I got to have this whole discussion in a backless hospital gown tucked under one of those stupid sheets, which is always a great way to make Grown-up Decisions TM, but nothing got stuck inside me and I went away with hope.
[note: I tried the whole 'take birth control to minimize period' thing. I started taking it in the middle of my period. My period stopped, and then started again. Immediately. Everyone was all 'Oh, yuss, just take it for a few months and it'll settle down and maybe you won't get it." FUCK THAT NOISE! I would rather get my period every six months or so and yes, have a week of utter miserable hell, than have it settle down for a few months. Noooooo.]
So I went home with my handful of brochures and went to several semi-ridiculous sites. Ok. I get that for some women having their uterus removed is really traumatic, because they have cancer, or they want children, or whatever. But making a website where you can't use 'child related' things in your username so it won't offend anyone? Wow.
I had several people ask me about the whole having (or more to the point, not) children. And I did have a little unhappy Darwin dance in my head, I will admit, and some evolutionary guilt over opting out of the gene pool. But technically, I could still have children. They could still be my eggs, they would just need to grow somewhere else. But I would still be contributing as much to the continuation of the species as say, a man: I would be donating my genetic material in germ form. Also, I really don't want children. I hate the little fuckers. Sure, I'll hang out with them from time to time, and babies are amusing for about an hour. But I hate people. And I sure as hell hate what amount to even more ignorant people. So, no. And besides, I shouldn't have children. I would be an insanely shitty parent. I am -way- too involved in myself, my life, and my happiness to bring some attention-stealing parasite into my world. But at least I can admit it. And who would want to bring a kid into this shit world, while I'm on the subject?
At some point during this period I watched Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, and I just loved the line "I barely survived my own childhood, I don't want to be responsible for someone else's" or however it goes. Totally sums up my philosophy. So, yeah, that was a total non-issue. Again, see above re: involved in myself. I was only worried about the consequences directly involving me.
But they sounded pretty minimal. So I made another appointment and went in to say yes, I want the surgery.
[At this point, I should probably mention something else about myself. I have a medical fetish. Like, a really big one. Since I was at least five. But I've never had any major medical things, especially not voluntary ones. When I was little I had a Sesame Street book about Grover going to the hospital to get his tonsils out, and I loved it. It was like preschool porn for me. But did I ever get surgery? Nooo. Did this influence my decision...maybe. A little. Yeah. Totally.]
And then I waited. And finally, on November 16th, Louis Riel's execution day, my surgery date was set for December 22nd, the day after Winter Solstice. Very significant seeming.
So, I set my affairs in order, got a will kit, joined my grandfather's memorial society (weird, very weird. But then, I have a morbid family. I come by it honestly). Just in case. And I waited. Then the surgery got postponed to January 4th, because some woman had the gaul (is that the right kind of gaul? gall? I think it's gall. But the other one is funnier and makes me think of Asterix) to have cancer. I know, right? (No, seriously, the woman who called to let me know was super apologetic. No matter how many times I said, you know, it's alright, cancer completely trumps my elective surgery, she just kept apologizing.)
[another rant: I hate when that happens. It really angers and depresses me. Like, how many people did the poor receptionist have to talk to who honestly thought that their shit was more important than saving someone's life? Those situations, when someone is apologizing for something a) reasonable and/or b) out of their control...Fuck, I hate people.]
So I got to have Christmas not as a cripple. Yay. Then it was just more waiting until...
The hospital! Illixim was going to work, because there was no point in her freaking out rattling around the hospital (as it turns out there was, because she was just freaking out rattling around work. Oh well.) So I got a ride from a friend, but he didn't stay, so I was all alone and a little anxious. I forgot my coat in reception and had to go back down and get it. But everyone was super nice and made everything really easy.
[I just thought of another of my Weird Deciding Factors. You should read that in John Candy's voice, like from Little Shop of Horrors. He was my favorite actor as a child, mostly if not entirely because of his last name. Anyway. Illixim, being a responsible pet owner, believes that pets should be spayed or neutered. And I'm a pet. So...]
So I read my book and waited for like three hours, until they had to take my book away and shuffle me down to the surgical waiting room, where I had the only magazine (it was also really cold, so me and the patient in the little booth directly across from me were both huddled under blankets. I had been cold since the first waiting room, where the only non-nice nurse had been all "Don't touch the bed if you don't have to, someone else has to use it!" but then I was cold so I grabbed the folded blanket and tucked myself in on the chair--which I moved to a better position. I also nabbed a chair with arms in the surgical waiting room. I always think, I am a human, and I adapt my environment to suit my needs! Anyway. And she kind of glared at me when she saw me with the blanket. Weird.
So, I had the only magazine, which was great. Unfortunately, it was from ICR. And worse, it was only like three pages long. So I didn't even have any length of religious wackery (I'm not one to bash religions, but some of it is just wackery, plain and simple. Like, when someone says "reason for the season" THE ONLY thing that comes into my head is Ned Flanders) to occupy me, but then people kept showing up to talk to me, like my gynecologist, who was also my surgeon, which was nice, and she patted me on the knee, which made me feel better. She also told me I would have to take a stool softener, and I'm not sure if she told me it would be a big red pill and I absorbed the information subconsciously, or if I just psychically knew, but it is indeed a big red pill. Then they put me in the operating room and started hooking me up and putting a railway tunnel...I mean IV...in and all that. They also gave me some funny-smelling gas and I started grinning like an idiot, and the last thing I remember thinking is, jeez, why am I grinning like an idiot, I should probably stop but I can't seem to...Luckily they didn't put me in the stirrups until I was out.
Then I woke up and two women were leaning over me, and I was pretty dopey and out of it. One of the first things I remember them asking was "Why did you decide not to have children?" Honestly. I shit you not. 'cause, wow, timing. Everyone joked later that I should have said, "What?! I can't have children?! What did you people do to me?!!!" But I just grinned blearily and gave them the Don't Be Afraid of the Dark party line.
Then they wheeled me into my room. A private room would have been $120/night, so I said no, but...I got a private room anyway, as it turned out. Yay!
And then I laid there for a bit and people ambled around and I really hated my catheter. Seriously. Nothing else hurt. Just the catheter. And eventually the IV. The holes in my abdomen? Nope. The stitches in my vagina? Nosir. That would make, you know, sense.
And then Illixim and my grandma (who was a huge hit with all the nurses) showed up, and I was so happy to see them! And I felt pretty good. Illixim had found a get well card in the hospital gift shop that had a picture of a cat that looked like one of ours, but it was a religious get well card. I'm not sure how that works. "Get well, or Jesus will kill this cat"?
Eventually my grandma left and we had some food and I was still feeling good (except for the damn catheter) so they decided I could get up and walk around. I walked to the bathroom and back and was sitting back on my bed when I really, really had to puke. I told the nurse as quickly as I could, and she brought me one of those stupid, tiny kidney bean shaped dish things. Like, yes, if a bee had to puke, it would be plenty. A human being? Not so much. Yeah. I felt pretty bad. So the catheter stayed in.
Then they gave me some Gravol, which made me really, really sleepy, and then Illixim had to go, so I read, but then I was awake, so I made them give me more--not because I was queasy, but because it had put me so wonderfully to sleep and I was feeling sorry for myself.
Of course, they kept taking my temperature/blood pressure/oxygen-finger-clampy thing all night, and it was bright, and there were crazy old ladies across the hall, so I didn't sleep -well-, but...the light string that attaches to the pillow is brilliant.
Of course, when I woke up in the morning, the catheter wasn't bothering me, and I had cream of wheat, which I've never had before, and now I know why. Because it's lumpy phlegm. But that's ok.
And then Illixim showed up again, and I was so happy. And then we signed my release and she wheeled me out and I found out about how our bank had fucked up, so my grandparents got my prescriptions, and then I went home.
And I've felt, overall, better than I do during my period. And now I won't get it. So, rad. Totally in favour. Everyone should go get one. I've been moving a little slow, but it's been rare for me to be in pain. Mostly it's just discomfort, which is totally worth it. And I can (I mean, have to) rest for six weeks. Which reminds me of Stupid Internface. So in the morning this guy shows up, literally two minutes after they took out my catheter, and the nurse is still standing there from having taken it out, and he goes, "Have you been up to pee yet?" Nurse: "We just took out the catheter." Internface: "Oh. Ok." Then he talked at me some more, told me I should just rest for two weeks, making me want to remove one of his organs and tell him that, and then asked if I had been up to pee yet. Nurse: "We JUST took out the catheter." And, you know, I've been laying here this whole time. In your view. Not peeing. Or walking. *facepalm*
Oh yes. I also wanted to email Adam Corolla and tell him I'm suing him for tearing the stitches in my vagina, because his book is freaking hilarious. Except that I hear it in the voice of Spanky Ham. Which doesn't seem to be entirely inaccurate.