Life in the Last Year

Hey guys! It's Kaitlyn. This blog post is written by one of Invisible Wave's amazing ambassadors, Sarah Sheppard. Thank you Sarah for this amazing post!

It’s been awhile. Hope you are all doing well and dealing with the crazy changes over the last two years. Currently, where I am in my health ‘journey’ is in limbo. Pretty much the same place I was the last time I wrote a piece. Hovering between two worlds; between chronic pain and actually having a life.

Before I talk about my present I want to tell you about something positive from the past. I had my hysterectomy last November 2020. It was an emotional decision but I had come to the end of the road and had no other choice. I’m unbelievably happy I did it though as I finally got the answers I was searching for so long. My uterus, fallopian tubes and cervix were removed. My right ovary was kept so, fortunately, I have not had to be on any hormone treatment. After my insides were examined, I had an appointment with my doctor who gave me the results. My uterus was riddled with endometriosis, but on a cellular level so it never showed up on scans; also I had severe cervicitis which would explain the pain during sex and the recurring urinary tract infections. I don’t think my words can explain the joy of validation after so many years of being ignored and abandoned by so many doctors. I have definitely had many moments of baby fever and realizing that one making a choice about having a baby is one thing, but having that choice taken away from you forever is very different. There has certainly been times where I have mourned that but my pelvic pain has been reduced by about 50-60% which is wonderful.On a personal note: when I was medically allowed to have sex again - I was terrified. But, for the first time in four years, I was able to make love to my husband and not be in agony. We cried together in happiness. It has been the best result of the surgery because, I believe, intimacy with our partner is so important to our happiness.

So my pelvic congestion syndrome has been quiet for a while but recently I started getting slight pain on the left side of my abdomen again. As that can be a sign on a blown out vein, I contacted my Interventional Radiologist who said I needed an MRI to check on my pelvic veins. Also needed an updated scan on my spine and neck so we thought we’d bang them out together! This is where I discovered UCLA’s new procedure for booking them. If, like me, one has medical implants like a stent or coils (I have both) then you need to be ‘approved’ before you can book an appointment. This seemed a bit silly considering I have had two MRI’s since my implants were placed, but, I’m all for safety.