Friday, August 21, 2009

Life altering decision.

The time has come where I have admitted that I will never have a child of my own. I’ve had three failed pregnancies, several heartbreaks while testing over the years, and a disease that has crippled my reproductive system. I could try IVF or IUI but I don’t want to do that for numerous reasons, so I am officially throwing my hat into the ring.

LW doesn’t want anymore children and I knew this by the second date. I never wanted to change his mind; I just needed to understand what I wanted. It took me 15 months of dating him to understand what I wanted.

It’s not that I don’t love children, because I do. It’s not that I think I need to live my life by what LW wants. I just need to do what is right for me…my health is more important.

I’m tired. My left ovary is shot. I pop mild pain medicine on an almost daily basis. As I sit here and type this, my left side is in pain. Not excruciating bone crushing pain, but enough pain to make me tired. I don’t think people understand how debilitating endometriosis can be. My oldest sister and my mother both had hysterectomies in their early 30’s. I’m now in my mid/late 30’s wondering why I have waited so long to find comfort.

In the past my doctor has suggested a partial hysterectomy. At the time I put it off because I was single AND I was unsure if I wanted any children. I always thought I wanted children. I went through some treatments to try and get pregnant, none of which have obviously worked. Then I got divorced and had to re-evaluate my situation. Do I adopt? Do I go to a sperm bank? Do I find a man good enough (and willing) to be my child’s father? And then I fell in love. I fell head over heels in love with a man who has two beautiful daughters, who never, not once led me on; who told me he doesn’t want anymore children. I respect his honesty. So I spent the next 15 months figuring out if I really wanted children or did I just like the idea of children? I come from a long line of women on my dad’s side of the family who are childless.

So my decision is to schedule an appointment to have my left ovary removed. The doctor said I can still get pregnant with one ovary, although MY chances are greatly decreased. So I also plan on talking to her about tying my tubes to prevent any ‘accidents’ (like that would ever happen!). LW told me he would bite the bullet and get the big “V” done, but like I told him….”If she’s going to be in there removing an ovary, she might as well tie the rest of me up.”

It was a hard realization and I’m sure as the date ticks closer I will lose some sleep over it and I will be a soggy, emotional mess. But I want to do it. No one is forcing me. In fact up until yesterday I had never discussed this with LW. I honestly just want to feel good again. I want to feel healthy. I want to stop crumbling over in pain. I want to stop the birth control pill. I want to live and not say I can’t do something because I don’t feel well. Most days it takes everything I have to commit to exercise. To commit to NOT laying on the couch because my side hurts so badly I could throw up. I’m tired of having laparoscopy’s to’ clean out’ the endio. I am thoroughly and utterly exhausted.

My hope is to process this all over the weekend and to make the call on Monday. I’m praying for the strength to do this. I NEED to do this…for ME.

13 comments:

Sue said...

Danica, my thoughts and prayers are with you as I know what a difficult decision this must be for you.

My personal opinion is this is the right decision for you and I think in the long run improving your health will make you a much happier person. Perhaps happy enough to help balance the pain the decision itself.

Tooj said...

:) You will find exactly what you need to say and do for Monday. Children are a blessing, certainly, I can't discount the two I have. But it's funny how we wonder what we want or think we KNOW what we want...when in reality...what we NEED is exactly what we're living.

The best part of having childrn in your life is what you can provide them based on the experiences you've had. And you've been blessed to be part of two girls' lives in a unique way. And maybe what you have to offer them is completely unknown to you at this moment in time....but once you find it, it'll feel as you always imagined the joys of having a child in your life SHOULD feel.

I know I cannot say I understand how it feels to NOT have my own children because I do. Two beautiful boys. But after having had them...I CAN say this - I've learned so much more about WHAT I have to offer kids, and it has NOTHING at all to do with my own children. Find that part in YOU. You'll be glad you did. Helping a child along their path, no matter who they come from, is what some of us were meant to do. :) Happy Friday Danica.

A Stitch In Thyme said...

Coming from someone who had stage 4/5 endometriosis, I feel your pain to a degree. I did in fact have two children but I put my life at risk doing so. My second pregnancy forced an emergency partial hysterectomy. It was determined to be an act of God as I had pre-cervical cancer. Talk about not knowing God's intent!!! I do not begin to understand what it must be like not to have children but I can certainly relate to having endo. I had 8 laproscopic procedures to "clean out" what could be cleaned. I was in horrific pain for much of my second preg but I was determined to not have my daughter be an only child. Funny how things work out, that's another story.

I feel you are making the right decision. I left my ovaries only to have an emergency surgery once again, two years ago. I had a tumor in my left ovary the size of a softball. I kept telling my doctor I felt like I was pregnant peeing all the time. THe tumor was pressing in on my bladder. Recently I had another scare but it turned out to be a bad lymph node. I have one ovary left and two boobs! So far, so good. I haven't been able to have children for 23 years and I bawled when they took my L ovary. Can you imagine... bawled. Now, I'm good. I just take in rescue animals. I wanted 6 kids, sex was not of importance. I am one of 11 surviving children. I was prepared for a big family. It was not meant to be and now I understand why. I have a different calling. Lupus and animals. It's good.

Be at peace with your decision before, again, before you actually go through it. Don't be shocked if you cry during or after. It's perfectly normal. It's just a coming to terms if you will. Best of luck to you and blessings. Tammy

Erica said...

Have you seen an endo specialist? The ERC is in Atlanta, and there are a handful of specialist in the country. My friend had surgery w/ Dr. Cook in California, and she's doing incredibly well. I too am tired of the laps to scrape out the enemy, so I'm going to see him, someone who only does endo laps. Do what you feel you need to do, but don't hesitate to get a second or even third opinion. A lot of gynos don't know all there is to know about endo, and a lot are misinformed. I wish you the best. -Erica

Julie said...

Peace.

That's what I wish for you with this decision.

Andrea said...

((HUGS))

I can't even begin to imagine what you go through daily or how difficult this decision was for you.

I will send you all my thoughts as you go through this point in your life.

Emily said...

*hugs*

What a difficult decision - I'm so sorry that you're in this position to begin with.

I'm here for you, girlie!

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

The others said it best...especially Tooj. You are a mommy already. You will spend the rest of your life with LW and as a result, those girls will be just as much yours as his. When they are with you both, you are in fact, a mommy...their mommy. Although, they may say otherwise, you are caring for them with every ounce of a mother's love.

I can only imagine what you will feel as you make that call but if you are at peace with it, then you won't look back.

I'm proud of you for making such a tough decision.

Mandy said...

Sending lots of hugs and prayers your way. I hope whatever you decide to do, it will put an end to both the physical and emotional pain you've had to deal with.

Mike Golch said...

My wife had the same problem.The doctor removed both her overies,and she is doing better.Not having children is tought.We lang ago decided that it was not in our best interests to have children from my wife's health aspect.

Crystal said...

You know I trust you to make the best decision for you. I know how hard that probably was for you to type out, but you know I'm always here for you.

I love you, my sweet friend! :-)

I'll bring you Rita's while you're recovering!

crrv said...

I can't imagine the pain (physically and emotionally) you have gone through to arrive at this decision. Good luck to you!
Cassie

Julie said...

I can only imagine how difficult that decision must have been. I wish you all the very best with your procedure!