Several months ago, Nancy Grace was on my TV telling us ladies to listen to our bodies and tell our GYN when we have something that just doesn't seem right - she did and it brought her a health scare, but the outcome was good. Now, usually I wouldn't listen to any advice from Nancy Grace, but I was about to go in to my GYN for my annual appointment and I had been feeling not right for quite a long time.
So I told my Gyn that I had been feeling not quite right, sex wasn't feeling quite right and there had been an awful lot of unusual spotting over the last month and a half. Unusual spotting has been a recurring theme in my life, so that wasn't terribly concerning until it was combined with other problems. She seemed convinced I might have a polyp and wanted further testing to find out for sure.
For two weeks I had to wait for the right time of my cycle to go in for, what can best be described as, a horrible test. The actual discomfort level is not the worst experience ever, I mean come on I've had a kid naturally, but it isn't pleasant. The fear factor was truly awful! You know there is a woman "looking" around your ovaries, uterus, cervix, etc. - searching for something nefarious. I knew my problem was on the right side, but I didn't know what that meant. I worried it was my ovary. It wasn't. She needed to take a better look with the assistance of a doctor. They had to put a balloon in my uterus (fun let me tell you) and then fill me up with dye to take a closer look. That's when the radiologist said, "There it is! Let's get a measurement." Scary words when you don't know what "it" is!
As soon as he left, the technician told me not to worry. It appeared to be a polyp. They are quite common, and usually benign. That helped. But "usually" isn't the greatest vote of confidence.
Two weeks later, on my husband and my anniversary no less, I was in my doctor's office. She encouraged me to schedule surgery with her, at my nearest convenience. She did what she could to reassure me, telling me it was likely a polyp, she was optimistic it wasn't cancer because I don't have the typical risk factors that would make this the likely outcome - but she stopped short of telling me not to worry. She also pointed out that it is very rare for somebody my age to develop a uterine polyp.
Halloween day, I went in for pre-op. It was scary, but I wore my big girl pants and got through it with ease. A week later I went in for a procedure where the doctor takes a scope and looks inside my lady parts - followed by a D&C to remove the polyp. Next came recovery and waiting anxiously praying NOT to hear from my doctor again over the course of the next five days (the amount of time she said it would take to get the pathology report back). Meanwhile, my husband was leaving town on a business trip. I was alone with the kids, dreading getting a call. Praying NOT to get a call. Going so far as to plan non-stop activities (despite the fact that I was still recovering from surgery and not feeling great) and keeping my cell phone off and far away, until convenient times where I felt brave enough to check without losing it in front of the kids if I got news I wasn't hoping for.
Thank god, nothing! Today was my 2 week post op visit. I was expecting to hear good news, but waiting patiently to actually get that good news. You don't know just how lucky you are, until you see the genuine pleasure your doctor has in sharing this good news with you. I have to say, she did a great job of selling how surprised she would be if it was bad news after seeing how genuinely thrilled she was with the pathology report.
I have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving! It was a crappy couple of stressful months, going through this process. But I am so happy I listened to Nancy Grace. Every day I feel a little bit better.
I guess the moral of the story is, listen to me and Nancy Grace: If something just doesn't seem right, even if the symptoms appear to have nothing to do with your lady parts, consider the fact that strange feelings inside, weird pain in your leg, an odd feeling that you just aren't hungry when you usually would be, weird pains in your lower abdominal area or lower back that aren't bad but occur with exercise, or for me - a feeling that I needed to drink water or it would just sort of not feel right when I had to urinate sometimes (almost like I had a UTI, but not anywhere near as painful and usually fine when I had a lot to drink that day) - talk to your doctor. On a scale of 1-10, my pain level was never more than a 3-5, but sometimes it wasn't there at all. The spotting was a dead give away, but now that I've been through this and seen how things I would never have expected related to my uterus, could 100% be related to a problem in my uterus, I see why it is so hard to diagnose cancers in the ovaries, uterus, etc. until things are more advanced.