March 11 marked a year since I went into the hospital for a quickie day procedure (this, if you're really curious).
A year since I fell asleep chatting with a friendly nurse and woke up, hours later, in horrible pain and mumbling "I didn't think it would hurt this badly."
A year since I weakly joked that it felt like I'd been cut open and the nurse looked at me strangely and rushed to get the doctor.
He'd given me a hysterectomy, he explained in his usual brusque manner. I don't want to get graphic but stuff went down, I was cut open (a third C-section, essentially), Michael was called into a little room (where he waited, terrified) and the doctor made him decide if I should get a hysterectomy immediately or, like, be sewn back up, recover, and then repeat the whole she-bang once I gave my permission.
(He went for the former, obvi, because he knew I'd be vicious if I woke up and had been cut open for pretttttty much nothing.)
(It was totally the right decision, even if I did tease him about just doing it so he didn't have to go through with his planned vasectomy.)
A year since I was suddenly unable to work for a while. A year since I was trapped upstairs in my bedroom, giving up control over my kids and our day-to-day lives. A year since I wrote my Huffington Post piece about the whole experience.
A year since I slipped deeper and deeper into a bad place.
Since I learned things about myself.
Since I learned how to climb out of the cold water and onto the shore, with the help of a little orange pill.
A lot of good things have happened in the last year, too.
I'm almost finished writing a novel. I've been killing the work-at-home mom thing (except when I'm failing at it?). I'm throwing myself into the best DIY projects we've done yet -- as well as as "just for fun" projects that make me happy. I'm keeping up with the kids (not the Kardashians) as they continue to change and morph into these awesome little mini-people. Michael and I celebrated seven years of marriage and a zillion (15) years together.
Oh, and THIS HAPPENED ALSO ...
How amazing is this photo???
I have Roo to thank for it. She sent it to me while I was still recovering in the hospital because she knew I'd love MY OWN PERSONALIZED PHOTO of John and Sherry Petersik more than any greeting card slash flower delivery slash singing telegram in the entire WORLD.
(I didn't share the photo until today because, at the time, Young House Love was on a hiatus and John and Sherry weren't sure they were ever returning to the blogosphere. The internet was going crazy trying to post recent photos of them to determine what had happened + what they were doing and I didn't want my sweet get-well pic to end up on GOMI.)
It doesn't feel like a full year has gone by, and yet I can barely remember what it's like to buy tampons because haaaaaaaaaaa, no periods anymore! (I like to remind my friends of this, smugly, when they're complaining about cramps.)
If it wasn't for this totally-not-planned hysterectomy, I might never have reached the tipping point I needed to get medication for my depression and anxiety. I might never have been comfortable writing + sharing on social media about living with depression and anxiety. I might never have gotten tattoos or taken career risks or generally gotten much more honest with myself (and with others).
So here's to you, busted-up uterus and all your problems!
I guess I kind of owe you one.