I woke up in the recovery room feeling really groggy and like someone was sitting on top of me. I remember feeling thirsty and the nurse asking me if I wanted some ice chips. She asked me how I was doing and I told her it felt like someone was sitting on me. She smiled and said, "Yes, you will feel that way for a couple of hours." I must have fallen back to sleep because when I opened my eyes again, Dr. K was there. She told me that they were able to remove Shrek laprascopically and that Shrek was benign. I asked if my ovaries were intact and she said that they had to take the one that Shrek had pretty much swallowed whole. They tried to carve it out, but it was no use. Shrek devoured my little ovary. She reminded me that I all I need is one good functioning ovary to conceive. While I am happy to have one, I couldn't help but feel a little bad about losing one of my girls. I distinctly remember thinking of Lance Armstrong. How he must have felt.
Once I was a little more conscious, they wheeled me back to my little short stay room and there was my knight in shining armour waiting for me. A lot of what happened for the next few hours is a bit foggy. I slept a lot. I do know that I was given some prescriptions for pain medication and I didn't bring my insurance card with me, so Ale went back home to get the cards for me. Then he went to the pharmacy and paid for my prescriptions. I replay the things he did for me in my mind and I appreciate him so much more everytime. The nurse brought me some crackers and told me to eat them and drink some water. They wanted to make sure I could keep food down and that I could go to the restroom on my own before letting me go home.
It must have been 3 pm when I finally got to go home. My post-op orders were to eat things that are easy to digest, such as Jell-o and apple sauce and to get up and walk the length of my apartment every couple of hours. I asked Ale to stop at Fred Meyer to buy the things I needed. While he was in the store, I decided I would call BJ (from the job) to let her know that my surgery was a success and I would only need 2 weeks at most to recover. She told me that they decided to hire someone else. Wow, I was pretty bummed because she said that they were going to get a temp. Oh well, things don't always work the way we want them to. So it was back to square one for my job search. Ale was in Freddie's for a long time, but I figured the poor guy had no idea what he was looking for so I waited patiently. Dr. Feelgood really gave me some strong stuff. I honestly started to feel really good while I waited in the car. I mean, I didn't feel much pain. In fact, the next morning I woke up at 4am in so much pain and I felt an incision that I didn't even realize I had the day before. The strange thing is, a lot of my pain was in my arm and shoulder. Weird. I think they must have had my arm stretched out on one of those little boards because the nurse had asked me if I had any issues with my arms before my surgery. I told her I have a recurring shoulder injury on my left side from tennis. The pain was on the right. I had no choice but to take the pain meds they gave me. I really don't like to, but I was in so much pain I was almost in tears.
Over the next couple of days Ale cooked for me and helped me get up to walk around. He asked me (Italianism #1) how I could possibly eat that toxic waste called Jell-o. I told him Jell-o was something that my Mom would give me as a kid when my stomache was upset and I liked it. I remember him saying something like his nonna would have a heart attack if she ever saw him eating something like that. My knight in shining armour is the food police, seriously! There are so many Italian rules for eating. What to pair with what, etc.....At that point, it wasn't the first thing on my mind, but I know he only tells me those things because he cares about my health.
The Thursday after my surgery, I was up and walking around when my cell phone rang. It was Dr. K with the Shrek pathology report. She told me that not only was Shrek a dermoid cyst, but it was also an immature teratoma, in other words, a cancerous tumor. She advised me to make an appointment with Dr. McC as soon as possible to see what she thinks we should do. She was regretful for having to tell me over the phone but she wanted me to know as soon as possible. I seriously felt my heart sink to the very pit of my ruebenesque belly. I felt my whole world crashing down on me. As soon as I hung up I started crying. Ale held me and told me it was all going to be ok. I think I cried more for my Mom than for me. I didn't tell my Mom about any of this. I figured it was going to be simple but with Ale going back to Italy in a week and the possibilty of me having to have surgery again, I would have to tell her because I would need her to come up to Portland to help me post-surgery. Everything seemed to be happening all at once. Ale was leaving soon, I lost the job I had worked so hard to get, I just found out I had cancer.....it was all just too much. So now maybe you can understand why I appreciate Ale so much. He was here for me through all of this. He made my days happier, when they might have otherwise been grim. I knew I had to be strong because I was going to have to face the music all by myself because my appointment with the Oncologist would be 2 days after Ale left.
Dr. K told me that they sent Shrek up to Washington for a second opinion from a Dr. that is an expert on these things. So my appointment with Dr. McC is going to be based on he results of that second opinion.