What an embarrassing morning it’s been. I had a follow-up appointment with the surgeon that performed my hysterectomy in September. In the waiting room a very pregnant woman walked in and I immediately got very sad. She looked so happy! I’ve heard people say before that women have a glow when they’re pregnant, and now I know it is true. This woman looked absolutely radiant. I can’t even put my finger on what made her look like this, but she was just glowing.
I sat there for a while, fighting back tears and thinking about how I could never glow like that. Thinking about how I’m “barren” and could never carry a child if I wanted one. I had never given having kids a serious thought before, I never wanted a child. Other people’s children even make me nervous. But this woman looked so fulfilled and with such purpose in life that I found myself feeling very sad and jealous of her. Obviously I know nothing of her life, but I have always wanted that fulfillment and “glow”.
I suppose no one is happy 24/7 but there are a lot of people in the world that seem fulfilled and truly seem to enjoy life. Things that devastate us “sensitive” folks seem to just roll right of their backs like it’s nothing. Are children truly the way to a fulfilled life?
I feel like if I did want a child, I wouldn’t want to adopt. It would be like the people in my life that try to take the place of my mother. It’s really not the same. And if I did adopt a child or get a surrogate, I would never have that “glow” that I saw today.
When I got in the room to see the doctor I kept looking at the pictures on the walls of pregnant women. I told myself I wasn’t going to cry and smashed all those feelings down. I had a very brave face on until the nurse came in to take my vitals and asked me how I was doing. I told her how I’m having trouble sitting for long periods and walking any distance. Her response was, “still”? I don’t think people realize how strong of a word that is. I’m harder on myself than anyone else could ever be, so when you say, “still” it reminds me of my own feelings of disappointment and not doing good enough. I “still” feel like I’m not doing well enough. I “still” don’t feel physically capable of working. I realize other people have an abdominal hysterectomy and go back to work right away. I guess I’m not those people.
The doctor came in and asked me how I was doing and why I was there to see her. Much to my chagrin I started crying. Then she looked very confused and kept saying she didn’t understand what the tears were for. I told her I thought I should be better by now. She said everyone is different, some people are better in a few weeks and others take longer. She said maybe it is scar tissue causing the pain, or I’m developing another cyst on my ovaries. She said if it gets worse there are things they can do. I just kept trying not to cry. She reassured me that it was a big surgery and it would take time, but I “still” feel sad that I’m not better yet. I “still” feel worried and nervous at the response I will get when I go back to work. I “still” feel barren and somehow broken because I had a hysterectomy. I “still” am in pain and exhausted and am “still” really hard on myself about that. I “still” search for that glow and fulfillment that I saw on that woman’s face today.
My pep talk to myself: