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I’m Bringing Sexy Back. Clearly. — twenty(or)something: the archives

I’m Bringing Sexy Back. Clearly.

by Susan Pogorzelski on November 3, 2011 · 15 comments

Last Thursday, I went in for gallbladder surgery. Nine hours later,  after a tough time in recovery, I went home to my parents’ house where I’ve spent the past week taking naps, watching movies, and acting as an architect for Sims 3, thanks to the awesome generosity of one of my brothers.

On Friday, the day after the operation, my mom asked me how I was feeling. I kind of paused and evaluated myself — then, for the first time in two and a half months, I genuinely smiled. I felt great. The only pain I was feeling was from the surgery; the pain and the fog that had persisted, that had drained me of any semblance of myself, was gone.

My mom began to cry with relief; all I could do was hug her, knowing everything my family had gone through with me…

Today, I received a call from the surgeon’s office. When the gallbladder was removed, the surgeon had said that everything looked fine on the outside, so he sent it to pathology to have a look inside. It turns out it had been inflamed; despite scans, x-rays, ultra-sounds, and every other GI test available indicating otherwise,  I ended up having what’s called Chronic Cholecystitis.

This was my relief; this was my turn to cry.

Every doctor insisted that there was nothing wrong with me, but still I persisted, knowing my body, knowing me. I was in constant pain, I had to take time off from work and eventually go on short-term disability; I had no social life, I could barely function. There was no way that this was nothing; there was no way I could accept that this was my life from now on — one without smiles, one without teasing and laughter. That’s not a life.

That’s not my life.

So I did my own research — research that ironically kept pointing to this same gallbladder disease — and went to three doctors, including a specialist; I spent long days and nights in four separate ERs five different times before someone finally suggested the tests could be inaccurate or just not showing a possible non-functioning organ, before my family doctor really sat down to go through my records and consult with another doctor, before they concluded that despite the tests, all signs indicated that something was happening with the gallbladder.

Before they pointed me in the direction of a surgeon.

Before that surgery was finally scheduled.

I can’t believe what a difference it has made. I can’t believe that I’m smiling and laughing and joking around with family and friends again. I can’t believe that I can have my life back again.

I’m just…I have no words.

And since I’ve been trying to find the words for a proper written update for a week but have failed miserably, I  made a video:

 

Ok, so maybe the video is also to counter this picture that my dad so kindly took when I was in pre-op.

Sexy, right?

Oh, yeah. Rockin' the hair net...

Told you.

 

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris Olson November 3, 2011

I am so glad you are finally feeling better! I hope your recovery continues to progress so well. If you need movie or TV suggestions, I can give you plenty!

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Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Thanks so, so much, Chris! And yes, I’ll gladly take those movie/TV recs! I feel like I’ve watched everything there is to see on Netflix, and surely that can’t be the case! 😉

Reply

Suburban Sweetheart November 3, 2011

I am so, so happy for you – not because you’re loopy & sleepy & in pain, but because they FIGURED OUT WHAT WAS WRONG (because you made them), & because hopefully this means IT WON’T HAPPEN AGAIN (because you don’t have a gallbladder & all). I’m thrilled for you & really hope this is the beginning of a re-started, pain-free life for you.

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Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Kate, thanks so much! I can’t even begin to express the relief I felt — that there really was something when I was beginning to think I was going crazy. I’ve always believed in listening to your own body and trusting yourself, but I was beginning to wonder if I wasn’t wrong. And then knowing people were on my side, listening to me and helping me? That feeling of being able to place that trust in others is another relief in itself.

Thanks for always being here…and yes! A new start and the beginning of a pain-free life! I’ll take it! 🙂

Lots of love…

Reply

Miriam Salpeter, Keppie Careers November 3, 2011

Susan – You’re looking wonderful, and I’m so thrilled you are doing so well and are in store for a full and complete recovery from what’s been ailing you. What a wonderful relief…I hope a bright future of feeling better helps you overcome the frustration of all the incorrect information doctors have given you all these years. I am sure many more people than you realize DO need you…Absolutely try to “let it go” and do the best you can to take good care of yourself as you travel this next road. I’ll look forward to keeping in touch.

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Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Miriam, thank you so much for all of your well wishes! It feels good to be closing the book on this frustrating part, even though it did teach me much more than I can express. Your comment is beautiful and sums up everything I hope for in this next chapter on my life.

Many hugs and well wishes to you as well!

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Tom November 3, 2011

Susan, I’m very glad to hear you’re feeling better. It must feel wonderful to finally put a name to this and to hopefully be out of the woods.

I think that also shines through in your video. You do look beautiful in that video, if I may be so bold. 😛

Keep us apprised of your recovery and, if I may make a suggestion, take up vlogging!

Reply

Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Aw, Tom! You’re making me blush 🙂 Really, you are, but thank you…I have this whole problem with insecure modesty, so I appreciate your words 😉

All I ever really wanted was to have a name to this enemy that seemed to take over my life, so the fact that there’s that *and* that this was all it took to fix it is incredible to me. I’ll definitely keep you posted on recovery — it’s funny how I have no patience for it now, though it does take time.

I’m so grateful for you, Tom, thanks 🙂 <3

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Positively Present November 4, 2011

Great video! Thanks for being so open and sharing yourself with us! And I’m so so happy to hear you’re feeling better. YAY!

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Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Thanks so much, Dani! And thanks for being one of the friends I’d alluded to in the video — I don’t know where I would be without your friendship and support. Much love and well wishes to you, too!

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Audrey1119 November 4, 2011

I am so happy for you! It’s really obvious just how much better you feel, and in the video you are simply glowing 🙂

Good luck and all the best with everything that’s ahead of you!

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Susan Pogorzelski November 7, 2011

Thanks, Ana! It’s been a long, long road, but I’m so glad to be finding an end to it. Thanks for being here and for all your positive thoughts! <3

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Grace Boyle November 15, 2011

I’m so happy to hear things are moving forward and you found clarity (and are doing well!) Sending you lots of healing energy xo

Reply

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