Saturday, August 8, 2009

Happy Birthday to ME!!

My birthday was yesterday.

I turned 33.

I spent the majority of the day in the hospital recovering from surgery to remove my female organs that had become riddled with pre-cancerous tissue, causing me immense pain and worry. I've been asking for the surgery since doctors discovered the problem 2 years ago...but the doctors felt that surgery was not an option for me.


Oh...there were several reasons. For a while, it was because I am overweight. Then it was because I am so young for such a permanent solution (never mind that I have 5 beautiful, healthy children and my hubby had a vasectomy 4 years we were CLEARLY done having children). Either way - they wouldn't operate, and I was miserable.

Then I had a regular appointment to check on things "down there", and during the ultrasound, they discovered that the growths had...well...GROWN. Uncommonly fast. was mandatory. They wanted to do it RIGHT THEN.

But see, now, I had other plans. I was leaving on a very long vacation...and I wasn't going to postpone it. The doctors hemmed and hawed, begged and pleaded, but I very firmly stated that I had been asking for said surgery for 2 years, and three more weeks wasn't going to make much of a difference.

So there.

About the same time, we received a court summons from Broward County informing us that our landlord was going through foreclosure, and although we'd faithfully paid rent every month, they hadn't paid their mortgage since January 2009. We hurried and drafted a response, along with copies of all the cleared checks we'd written them for TWO YEARS, and dropped it off at the courthouse and bank.

Then we went on vacation.

Our landlord tried to collect rent in July, and we told her she was crazy and that we weren't going to pay her until she proved she wasn't losing the house.

We came home from vacation, and I instantly had to get ready for surgery...having countless labs, ultrasounds, pre-op appointments with various doctors, surgeons, and anesthesiologists, and a couple very uncomfortable biopsies.

Then, on August 6, I checked in to the hospital and went under the knife.

I've never had surgery before...but I have given birth to 5 children...two without any medication, so I figured I could handle it.

I woke up and cried. I cried all night long...not because of the surgery, but because of the stupid catheter that they REFUSED to remove. It REALLY hurt. I finally got them to remove it at 5:30 am...8 hours after I woke up...when they saw that I wouldn't stop crying. ( took 8 hours of my non-stop crying for them to believe that I actually WAS in pain).

After that...I felt much better. I got up and took a shower, watched some TV, and slept A LOT. My kids came to visit, oogled the holes in my stomach, and sang a sweet, soft "Happy Birthday" song. Around dinner, the nurse said I could go I called Jason, got dressed, and walked out without any help.

Modern medicine is amazing, isn't it?

I remember when my mom had a hysterectomy (for the same reason I did...darn those genetics)...she was in the hospital for DAYS with a slice through her belly from hip to hip. And it was days at home before she was fully up and around.

I'll admit to being loaded on Tylenol 3...but other than that...I'm fine. I have three small holes in my belly, and I spent just over 24 hours in the hospital. Pretty cool, huh?

I got home to find that my landlord...pissed that we won't pay her rent when she's foreclosing on her house... has filed eviction papers against us...ordering us out of the home in 5 days. That's great...cause I'm not supposed to lift more then 10 pounds for 4 can I pack? Not only that...but we have no where to go. And every lawyer we've called is out of town...except one...who told us we had no rights and owed them rent, AND had to matter what. (and for those of you wondering about that new law that just passed that says that if your landlord goes into foreclosure and doesn't tell you, they can't evict's primarily for Section 8 housing and apparantly doesn't apply to us. Of course.)

How can that be right? It feels like WE'RE being punished for doing the right we're paying money just to kicked out of our home...either by our unscrupulous landlord or eventually by the bank who will take over the house.

I have to say that it's really tempting to say: "Screw it", order a U-Haul, and just up and leave Florida. Especially after visiting the West last month and being reminded of all that we miss. But isn't the time for Jason to up and quit a good matter how unhappy we are.

I mean...I know I talk about how amazing the Jungle is...but the truth remains that we didn't want to live here more than a year, and there are many, many things that make living here very difficult...such as the cost of living, crummy housing, sub-par schools, and the fact that I have to stipulate everywhere I go that I speak only English...even at the hospital. Every nurse, doctor, surgeon, orderly...greeted me in Spanish. Some could not continue communicating with me once I informed them that I "No habla..." I'll admit that it made me a little worried about whether they knew what surgery I was having, or whether I was receiving the right medication, or whatever. Maybe that's why it took so long to remove that stupid catheter.

On the kids bought me two VERY BEAUTIFUL costume jewelry rings that I am VERY excited about, and my husband bought me a BRAND NEW CAMERA!!!!!! YEAH!!!!!

So as soon as I get it installed on the computer and figured out, I will post pictures. As you can see - I accomplished the I just need to master taking pictures with it!!)

In the meantime...thank you for your birthday and get well wishes. Please keep us in your prayers as we struggle to not be homeless. And keep smilin'!!!

Love, Shannan


Dave said...

Hang in there! I am sure that it is hard to be proactive for 2 years and then they finally want to move things along when you are busy! Catheters suck, no 2 ways about it. I almost backed out of my last surgery when I found out that I had to have one! Needless to say that they let some male nurse in training take it out and things have not been the same since! Hang in there and we hope that you get out of FL soon!

Marlowe Mania said...

What a trooper!!! I'm so glad that the surgery is over and it sounds like you are back on your feet...I miss you and wish we could drop in and check on you and your monkeys at the Johnson Jungle. I missed your birthday...sorry! It sounds like a memorable day. I love your updates... Thanks, my Amiga!!!
Love ya,