This past Tuesday I finally met with the gynecological oncologist that I was referred to to treat my endometriosis. I had to travel over 100 miles away to see him. And…to my dismay, he didn’t have any particular recommendation as to how to treat this. He just told me what my options are and said I don’t have to decide anything yet. He kept saying that my gynecologist may be right and everything might need to come out, but with surgery comes its own risks and I could wind up in more pain from more scar tissue forming. He did want to send me for genetic testing to see if I have the mutation that causes breast and ovarian cancer, because that could change his recommendation, but as of right now he wouldn’t recommend any one treatment over the other. Which is incredibly frustrating, as I thought I was being sent to him specifically to have surgery, and he didn’t seem overly concerned with removing anything.
My sister went to my appointment with me, so I asked her what she would do if she were in my shoes, and she said she would try treating it with birth control. So, foolishly I said that was what I would do, despite knowing that I can’t tolerate birth control. As soon as we left my appointment, I felt unsettled by my decision. So many people have been drilling into my head not to have surgery unless he said it’s absolutely necessary that I feel like I made my decision based on what THEY want, not what I want. If nothing else, I want to have my fallopian tubes taken out so I don’t have to worry about ectopic pregnancies. But of course by the time I thought to speak up about it, we were already on our way home.
Once I was home, I decided to look up the Pill the specialist prescribed, and again to my dismay I discovered that it’s not even something I can take, as I have two pre-existing conditions that it can’t be taken with (severe migraines and circulation problems.) I’m a bit ticked off that I was prescribed this particular medication despite the fact the doctor was aware I have these conditions. It’s also risky to take this medication if you’re overweight, as it can cause you to have a heart attack. Not to mention the typical risk of blood clots and stroke. These are things I’m just not willing to risk, so I’m not even going to bother getting the prescription filled.
I’m still a little iffy on whether I want to have a hysterectomy or not, but I plan to schedule another appointment with this doctor about a month from now to tell him I changed my mind on how I want to proceed. I can’t live in fear of an ectopic pregnancy, and as he said, having blocked tubes is like driving without a seat belt as far as risk factors go. I know now that I don’t ever want to get pregnant. For the last two months I have been grieving “what could have been,” even though “what could have been” isn’t what I even wanted. I have come to terms with the fact that I will never have biological children, and as of now I am okay with that. And I would be completely fine not having a uterus; my main concern is the surgery itself and the recovery afterwards, as well as the risks that go along with it.
I wish I could go back and speak to the specialist ASAP, but unfortunately I’m scheduled to have a femoral hernia repair surgery this coming Thursday, so I will be down recovering from that for a bit. But as soon as I get the “all clear” from my surgeon to travel, I’m going to see the gynecological oncologist and tell him my decision. He did say that I could always change my mind, and that if I needed to see him before my follow up in 6 months to give him a call.
Anyway, that’s where things currently stand. Hopefully he’ll be able to schedule me for surgery sometime in the near future so I can get this issue taken care of once and for all and put it behind me so I can start healing. I am tired of being in pain, and I am tired of being afraid.