Not that long ago I had big dreams of walking to the library with a baby strapped to me. Today I’m happy just to get up off of the couch without crying out in pain… things change.
A few days ago I had minor surgery. I was pretty hesitant to talk about it here because the nature of my surgery was kind of delicate. You see, I had some lingering issues from childbirth, and it’s my experience that people get kind of hush-hush about these types of things. But, I’ve already talked here about my boobs (and shared photos of them on many occassions, in fact) and our struggles with infertility and our decision to not have any more children. I’ve been pretty honest on here and I may as well keep chugging along.
I had a lot of anxiety leading up to my surgery for a lot of reasons, some of which are probably obvious, and some which are more private than even I am prepared to share with the entire internet.
But, the most significant thing for us was that my doctor wanted to put me under general anesthesia and I emphatically did NOT want that. I was not comfortable with that course of action, but when I asked if that was necessary, the doctor said, yes, it was, so… I went along with it.
Then, I wrote a desperate e-mail to my amazing, wonderful, incredible Doulas, and immediately got an e-mail back saying, “Call me! Now!”
Debbie, who you may remember as the hero from Margot’s birth story, encouraged me to be insistent with the doctor about my wishes just as I had been about my wishes during pregnancy and labor. She even spoke to the doctor on my behalf.
And, in the end, I got spinal anesthesia instead of being knocked out.
It was a huge relief and less risky for my health concerns and more comfortable for me overall.
I think we have been conditioned to believe that we should follow blindly with what professionals tell us is “the best course of action” but we forget that we often know our own bodies better than anyone else, and that we have rights as patients and as human beings. So, my message for the world today is… stand up for yourself.
I did, and it did not come naturally to me to do so.
The second message: Doulas are amazing.
I owe a lot to my Doulas, and it just so happens that May is International Doula Month.