Tuesday, November 09, 2021

My Cervix

****candid- real talk about exams****

 It is that time of year again...check under the hood and see how things are.

Like years prior I tried to make all the appointments in a week, so I could get them all done and then be done for a year...but that circles thing is still haunting me. I had my general checkup/in and to say that my primary wasn't happy with my answer to her : Are you happy? question is kind of an understatement. What did she really expect...I mean I think all of us have been run the fuck over these last two years. My response of "mediocre" was not received well and she offered no other options other than noting that she wanted me to take care of myself?! WTF

I was cleared and told that my cervix was too closed to do a proper pap and that I needed to have ANOTHER one done by the GYN department....as well as a stack of other orders for mammos and ultrasounds and follow-up bloodwork.

Meanwhile the gastro doctor needed me to REPEAT all the samples I had done two months ago because the lab didn't culture them all.

I went for my pap redo yesterday and aside from a single extremely pregnant woman in the waiting room, the other ladies in waiting all seemed unfazed and not pregnant.

I decided to have the NP that did my endo biopsy do this retry and she tried...and then asked for more things to try and do it. I was laying there flayed open with a speculum in place for longer that most of us would like, she proclaimed that more things were needed and rang for another woman in the office to fetch other devices to try and open my cervix enough to get cervical cells....after what felt like an entire construction site worth of devices she said she was not able to open the cervix enough.

She prescribed an estrogen suppository for me to take for a couple months in hope that would soften my cervix enough to take a proper pap. So she wants to try again in February. 

I felt defeated, and disappointed and after I got dressed, it also felt like I had been punched in my vagina. I have had some mild cramping too...but I am guessing that was from the clamp they put on my cervix while trying to get a cervical dilatator into me.

Today was my pelvic ultrasound...it was obvious when the ultrasound tech started to place the probe that there was a tissue tear in my vaginal wall from yesterday and then she said she could see where the NP tried to get into my cervix...in fact she said to expect spotting in the next couple of days as things looked poked. She told me that my ovaries are starting to get smaller too. I was thankful for the heads up and the repeated checking-in on me to see if I was alright and not uncomfortable. 

I left the appointment and sat in my car for a little cry, my vulva throbbing and aching.

It was a lot of things to process.

I am cooking tonight, feeling like I need to control something today...anything for that matter.

I was suppose to do a family photo shoot, but the family postponed and I am kind of grateful. It means I have some time to work through some feelings about this whole couple of days. I think I am going to soak in a tub tonight too, ideally it will help start some healing.

I know that a lot of my feelings are surfacing from my IF days, when I had most of the people from my county in my vagina, looking around and giving opinions. I can put on a mask, swallow pain, discomfort and make little jokes to deflect real feelings...but I am not so okay with doing that anymore. I am tired. I am tired of feeling like I am broken or unwell. This entrance into menopause is like taking a dive into a dark deep pool and no one tells you what the water temp is, what is in the pool or if you will sink or swim....because each of us sees that pool differently and so why tell you anything.

It has been a rough start to the week, I still have a breast ultrasound, and a follow-up with the gastro doc (who will be wondering why I am not sicker)

I am not wanting to complain, but really wonder if this is what to expect from here on out. Does anyone else have this experience? closed cervix with the onset of menopause, having to do paps over and over? How are you handling the beginnings of menopause, or perimenopause? 

Any advice or tips would be of great enlightenment.


Mali said...

Oh, what a horrible couple of days. I'm not surprised you're feeling a bit overwhelmed. I hope a long soak in the bath helped.

Menopause and peri-menopause and generally being a woman suck! I don't have any experience of this particular issue, but I can commiserate about feeling out of control. Sending hugs.

areyoukiddingme said...

Good Lord, I didn't even know that was a possibility! I am...not entirely satisfied with my OB/GYN's approach to menopause/perimenopause, but I suspect it's mostly my own fault. Whenever he has raised the subject, I mention my night sweats, and say they aren't a big deal. I don't know of any other issues I might be experiencing that might be related, which is why I'm not satisfied. For example, I have SVT (heart palpitations), which I think might be hormonally triggered. But when I raised that possibility to the cardiologists, they just kind of shrugged. I'll hit up my OB/GYN with it next time I see him. I think many of us don't know what we don't know!

OTOH, I did discuss with my doctor, and a High School classmate who is an OB/GYN mentioned, that annual pap smears for women with no unusual results and no different sexual partners might be a bit of overkill. So, if you fit in those parameters...maybe you can check under the hood every few years. Especially if it's going to be traumatic.

loribeth said...

Ow, ow, ow!! I hope that long soak in the tub helped.