Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The pain…it returns

I’ve had 2.5 years nearly entirely free from pain caused by the endometriosis that has taken up residence in the left side of my pelvis around my ovary.

But the good times seem to be at an end unfortunately.

The pain has returned, in full, long lasting force.

At least I assume it is long lasting because it started 5 days ago & is still here. Oh sure, I’ve had the occasional uncomfortable twinge, a brief bout of discomfort that rarely lasts an hour or so. You know, cramps, but not really. The ghosts of cramps past or the specter of cramps to come.

You know what I am talking about ladies.

But this is different. This is a continual discomfort, interrupted by moments of sharp pain whenever I do something silly, like stand up or sit down or….wear pants & underwear.

The sort of pain that makes wearing anything the slightest bit constricting (like underwear) uncomfortable.

The sort of pain that is accompanied by bloating & swelling guaranteeing that your loose pajama bottoms and your fat jeans are suddenly constricting.

The sort of pain that makes you wonder if somehow, without your knowledge & or any visible wound, you bumped into a steak knife & the blade slipped in to your pelvis & the skin closed up behind it.

That sort of pain.

A sort of pain I was long familiar with for 14 days a month every month for 3 or more years.

A pain that for a year blessedly went away for 3 months at a time with a Nuva Ring until my insurance said “Oh hell no we’re not paying for this non standard birth control usage anymore”.

A pain that vanished, really and truly vanished with the use of an IUD, about which my insurance said “Oh hell no, you don’t need no stinking IUD” three times before finally saying “Well, sure you can have IUD, why would you think we wouldn’t pay for it?”

This would be the same insurance that a year ago left me a voice mail telling me off for not having had a mammogram but also telling me that this message in no way implies that they will pay for it. (though they did pay for it)

The same insurance that in no way shape or form would pay for laparoscopy & surgical treatment for the ‘possible’ endo 3 years ago.

I resent this pain for reappearing. 2.5 years! I thought it was good. I thought it was taken care of. I thought the big issue would be in another 2.5 years when it came time for it to be removed and we had to have the Perimenopause Talk & possible battle #2 with the insurance about giving a 45 year old woman an IUD.

I’d forgotten how tiring dealing with chronic pain can be. I’d forgotten wincing every time i change position in a chair, I’d forgotten being awakened by stabbing pains in the night because I rolled over on my stomach. I’ve forgotten guarding my abs & pelvis from rambunctious boys who greet me with a body slam that hits right around my navel. I’d forgotten how frightening it is to know things are growing in you where they have no business growing & no real proof, except the pain going away with hormones, that it' is endo and not some cancerous tumor. Because it is always in my mind that it’s some cancerous tumor.

My OB can’t see me for 3 weeks & that is just as well for her because she wants to see how long this pain lasts, if it is different than before or a repeat pattern of pain until ovulation occurs. Its not so well for me because Tylenol & Motrin do little for it & it’s not bad enough to warrant a prescription due to the side effects. I’d rather deal with the pain than have my brain shut off from pain killers

If it is the same thing as before, then I’m looking at the possibility of having things…removed…the endo, possibly an ovary or even all of… you know... ALL of it. But that would be months away because the insurance will want proof I’m not just indulging my whims for needless laparoscopy.  I don’t think they were entirely convinced I needed my appendix and gall bladder removed either but only approved it because the normal refuser guy was on vacation each time.

So now I get to wait & count the days it lasts. Then do the same thing next month, if it happens next month. Probably with my luck it will be that erratic, hard to check, sort of thing that will drag this out until 2012, when I have to get the IUD removed anyway.

Meantime I am indulging in wine & chocolate, which is just as effective & more enjoyable than Tylenol

PS… if you have been reading out in the wider blogosphere the recent but ongoing debate about being ‘real’ versus censoring yourself or shielding off parts of your life so as to not bother readers or turn off potential advertisers and you have been wondering which side of the argument I come down on – now you know. But if you have been reading me since February, then you have long known my opinion on raw honest blogging.


Mel said...

Oh hun, sending lots of sympathy your way - I do hope the experts figure it out for you and that the insurance company gives the refuser guy a long vacation at the right moment xx

SciFi Dad said...

OK, so I cannot even understand what you're going through, but the way you describe it reminds me of my mother, who is chronically ill, and that makes me sad.

(Also: I'm not aware of this latest real/private debate. Now I have to look for it.)

Sugar Mama said...

Well, I'm happy to hear that you at least found a little bit of relief in wine & chocolate ;o) But sad to hear that it's bothering you so much.... I have that pain just right before periods a few times a year. So I get what you mean about the standing, sitting, etc. I'd recommend a great wine for you to enjoy, but I'm more of a beer drinker (I'm trashy like that). ;o)

Rinda1961 said...

Stacy, one off the things I've always loved about your blog is your very real, honest (and often laugh out loud funny) writing. Your story of pain is definitely not funny (even if the line about chocolate and wine made me smirk a bit), and I hope you fund a solution. Sending you lots of good thoughts. I'd send hugs but don't want to press on anything painful!

Mom said...

Ugh. I'm sorry you're in pain. And I hate the insurance nonsense, as though they're experts on anything!

Bottoms up on the wine, and send the hubs out for more chocolate!


LEleanaJohnson said...

I'm sorry for the pain you are experiencing. You certainly have a way with words, I actually enjoyed reading your story. Wish I could join you for the wine and chocolate.

Scrapdreams said...

Stacy - I'm so sorry hun. That kind of pain (the kind drs. can't readily verify with some test) really sucks. And the insurance companies all need a huge lesson in human compassion. So I'm sending huge non-constricting {{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}} and lots of positive vibes your way. Hope you get some relief soon!

LizzieMade said...

Oh Stacey, I'm sorry to hear you've got such a problem. Chronic pain is no joke and when you're a mum, life still has to go on regardless.
So much for medical insurance being there to help... I'm sure your Dr. will get you checked out to make sure it really is the same problem, but I do hope that you can get the tests and checks you need. Your dr. should back you up!!
Sympathy and *hugs* from across the sea!

Carrie said...

Sorry to hear that. Hope you are able to get some relief soon. Hugs.

The Damsel in Dis Dress said...

Oh, so sorry to hear about this. How difficult that must be! Prayers your way.

Andrea Chamberlain said...

Ugh Stacey - I'm so sorry. That is a total suckfest. I hope you find some relief SOON.

And yep - I'm with you on the real & raw blogging. Otherwise, why bother, right?