Every now and then I have these moments where I think ‘I can’t believe this is my life’.
I had this very thought when my parents ruthlessly ripped me out of school, packed us up, moved us to a new house and announced we were home. I was mortified that they had been so mean, stripped me of my friends, my whole life, my weekends spent at the Seymour’s house watching mighty ducks, gone. All gone! How could they!
I had this very thought when sitting across from Marcus the Front Desk Manager of the 5 star hotel as he announced that I had been given the job and would be swapping dirty hotel toilets for my new role as switch bitch – I almost broke down in tears and praised the lord!
I had this very thought when I got into college, graduated, brought my first suit, got my first promotion, my first pay rise, my first bonus, my first step into Project Management.
And don’t even get me started on my ‘I can’t believe this is my life’ elation when I met each of my sister’s beautiful babies, at the end of my first date with the hubby, the day he proposed, our wedding day – so many amazing moments where I smiled and thought ‘I just can’t believe this is my life’!
I didn’t think any of these events could be surpassed… So imagine my complete and total shock when I walked out of a surgeons office 9 weeks ago and found myself starring out the car window thinking I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS MY MOTHER FUCKING LIFE!
How? How did I go from a normal (mostly), completing functioning (only with coffee), totally whole human being to this. A chronically ill, barely functioning, soon to be partial person!
I woke up on a normal Thursday morning and by lunchtime I had completed paperwork and was being scheduled to have a significant chunk of my junk removed. That’s right, REMOVED! What-the-ever-loving-fuck!
Thank god I can tick that off the bucket list – go to Paris, travel to exotic places, see an elephant in the wild, have part of my digestive tract removed.
How did this become my life? How. No really. How.
I walked into that office prepared for the words to be utter. I knew it was coming. My pain levels had been on a steady increase for months. My side throbbed so bad some nights you could feel the pulsations through the mattress. This was not unexpected shocking news. But all of a sudden, it was.
My surgeon was factual and kind. His desk was immaculately clean. Too clean. Axe Murderer clean. But he had come highly recommended and as my shrink pointed out, if anyone was going to fiddle with your internal organs, you want a guy with a clean and tidy desk on the job. Despite being completely prepared for the news I forgot to ask all the important questions – Cue Hubby! He started with the most important one, the when? ‘Oh, in two Wednesday’s time’.
Oh I am sorry – you must have me confused with someone else, but you see in two Wednesday’s time I am getting my nails done and researching hair styles for the wedding I’m attending that weekend. I am totally flat out, soz, no can do amigo!
So needless to say, two Wednesday’s later, my ‘desk is so clean I could be a secret axe murder’ surgeon met me at the doors of my very own sterile theatre where I was sent to dream-town while he proceeded to remove part of my guts.
10cms of large intestine, 30cms of small intestine and an appendix later I woke up to discover I had a tube up my Nancy Drew nether-regions and a new found love for morphine! Not once did I consider when they told me I would be doped up and immobile for 24-48 hours, how I would wee. Never crossed my mind. Question, answered.
Over the last 9 weeks I have become quiet an expert on all thing ‘when you have organs removed’.
I love morphine, until I don’t. Then I love that they take it away because the vomiting stops.
Then I love Endone, until I don’t. Endone makes you constipated. Ever been constipated when you have just had some of your poop-shoot removed? Oh I have (I don’t mean to brag, but I will anyway). It’s an amazing sensation, trying to engage your abs to do anything (sit, stand, walk, poo) which is EXACTLY what you want to do after a surgery like this. You will find yourself screaming, sweating and praying for your misery to end, all whilst thinking ‘I can’t believe this is my life’.
Then there is the intense boredom. Honestly, how many videos can you watch before you can’t watch anymore? Three, that’s my limit. The inability to do anything coupled with the extreme boredom has you looking to create something to entertain yourself. Cue, Hubby arriving home. My ability to slip from adult to child-like-adult became easier than spending money at a shoe sale. Tantrums ensued, the bottom lip was stuck out and general bratiness hit level 100 in 0.10 seconds flat.
As always Hubs takes it in his stride. Confiscating sharp objects and food I can’t eat whilst managing my moods like the lion taming expert he is. Never once complaining, in actual fact, he spent the whole time telling me how amazing and strong I was and how proud I made him *blushes*. He was right, I was a total fucking super star! (back off bitches, he’s all mine)
Like all things, life continues. Despite the fact my world seemed to stay still, everyone elses continued and slowly but surely I started to feel less shit. Then blah. Then ‘Umm okay’. Then fine. Then kinda alright. Then pretty okay. Then I felt odd.
Each morning my eyes would open and things were gradually better, which was completely and utterly weird. I was now – Suspicious Sally. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. Eyes would open, I’d take stock and – nothing. No pain. No gurgles. Just nothing. And I couldn’t help but miss the noise.
Then I poo’d like a normal person for the first time in a year! After Michael Jackson moon walking out of the bathroom I couldn’t wait to scream ‘I can’t believe this is my life’! A normal poo! A normal looking, beautifully formed, pain-free poo!
Life was looking up!
Everything started coming up roses and every week got better and better. Four weeks after I said good bye to my internal troublemaker I faced the final challenge.
Saying goodbye to my surgeon.
I couldn’t believe how sad I felt when we shook hands and he said ‘I hope I never see you again’. As cruel as it sounds, I smiled and said the same back to him. If I am ever in his Axe murder prep palace (or office, if you like) then shit’s bad and as much as I like the guy, I’d prefer never to see his mug again!
Fast forward another 4 weeks and I am sitting here typing the words thinking I can’t believe what life has been like these past 8 weeks. Its surreal and mind blowing m. The excruciating pain I felt this time 9 Thursday’s ago is now a memory. The beautiful flowers I received have long since died. The cards stashed away. My last injection done and dusted. And life, the funny little tale it is has continued.
I have a kick-arse story to tell, one that I am positive isn’t over with, and plans to make. I don’t have a doctors appointment scheduled in the near future and my next colonoscopy will happen sometime in the next couple of months, but no set plan. My scars continue to fade and things have become very boring. Good, boring.
Our biggest life dilemma is what we will have for dinner, other than that (nightmare discussion, every fucking day) we are now just living a relatively normal life. Is my Crohn’s gone for good, I doubt it. I remain optimistic but the one-side stomach bloating and little niggles that have started over the last two weeks seem to suggest we aren’t done here, just yet. But that’s okay.
Such is life. And right now, mine’s pretty bloody good!