2017 in recap

Its mid January already and I haven’t written my annual year in summary post. I guess its because it was another tough year. I struggled, had ups and down, challenges and successes…and all in all I SURVIVED.

2017 all began early in January with my PICC line infection. Then a Blood clot, from the new PICC line and as if that wasn’t sufficient in the first month I got a GIANT hematoma. Yes, GIANT. It covered my whole right chest; I looked a mess. It took months to heal, and was more painful than any surgery I have ever had. (WELL minus this damn bladder implant.)

I laid low for months. I couldn’t do much, I was in and out of the hospital, hurting badly, and it sucked. Life went on. I visited mom in Florida for a quick minute and had a really great time. It is gorgeous there.

When I got back I saw a new surgeon about the mesh in my abdomen it had been giving me major pain and inflammation ever since it was implanted inn 2014. It was literally making me sicker than I regularly was. Upon exam the surgeon said it was indeed problematic and we needed to take as much out as possible.

He wasn’t able to remove it all, when he got into my abdomen it was a bit of a mess and mesh was really intertwined into my own tissues. I healed quickly and without much pain. For the first time in a long time I didn’t have constant abdominal pain. I literally woke up from surgery with LESS pain in my abdomen than when I went in! It was wonderful…but, I couldn’t urinate or poo at all on my own anymore. AT ALL.

I had struggled with those problems since I had the mesh originally implanted but I would just self-cath a few times a week and would continue on with life. I had a strict bowel program and everything was pretty routine before surgery. AFTER though, it came to a complete halt. I had a bunch of testing done and it was found that the mesh had completely killed off my nerves to my bowel and bladder.

I had a temporary spinal stimulator placed to see if it would help at all and it did. It woke my bladder back up. Which is awesome because I had gotten MANY kidney infections and was really ILL for a long time because of having to constantly self-cath, I was tired.

Two weeks after the temporary implant was placed they put in a permanent one. I can officially say this was the WORST surgery I’ve ever had. Not that the surgery was complex or anything, it is that this damn actual implant in my right butt cheek going into and up my spine HURTS LIKE THE DAMN DEVIL. It gives me the WORST sciatica and nerve pain that shoots down my right leg. IT also makes my lower back just ACHE. It obnoxious, even months after the surgery, I am still suffering, but I can pee, and so it must remain. I really enjoy being able to piddle on my own, I can’t lie.

About a month after all that I had a bladder prolapse. If you’re wondering what that is, let me explain…my bladder fell out. Where did it fall from? My vaginal canal. It was like a balloon hanging out. YEP, I know, TMI but there are so many people that go through the same bullshit I do, I want them to know THEY ARE NOT ALONE and so I talk openly about all this stuff. My bladder was out, it hurt, and once again I had to cath. The worst part? My bowel program no longer worked and I was SICK. Really sick. Everything was stuck up in there except for my bladder…that was pulling everything else and kinking all my plumbing.

It was a rough 2 months waiting for surgery. My surgeon was retiring and so all of his patients wanted their needs met before he left, which meant…a full schedule. I sure as hell didn’t trust any other doctor to fix me so I waited…it hurt. I cried, a lot. Bless Joshua’s heart. I was so frustrated and upset and it hurt so bad that I would pass out from the pain itself. I was nauseated 100% of the day and I just wanted to cry.

When I got it fixed the doctor told me he would use my own ligaments to pull things back in place. He said it might be a complex surgery but that he could do it. When I woke up I was upset. He had to put new mesh in. YEP MORE MESH. He said it was a different kind and that he put in in loose, but omg, I HAVE MORE FUCKING MESH. I hate it. My stomach once again swells up and becomes inflamed, I go through pelvic pain and suffering but I have no choice. My own body was so damaged from the first mesh that there is no way for it to hold in my organs without assistance.

Even as I type this, 3 months later I am crying. At the beginning of 2017 I promised myself to be more positive and try to share less on social media about my health struggles, and I think I did ok…but it was a hell of a year.

I owe my life to my nurse who comes twice a week to my house to make sure I am alive and not dying…she has literally saved me TWICE in the last year. My Mother has been a huge support as well this year and been by my side ever since I visited her after the hematoma. Joshua has stepped his game up and has been working on understanding the emotional rollercoaster it is to live as sickly as I do…

AND I started a company. I have been homebound for years, I don’t leave the house much, I had been tutoring Spanish for a bit once a month but I am sick and tired of being so damn poor. I created SICK PRINTZ. I bought everything needed to print ANYTHING. I can print shirts, artwork, backpacks, signs, and phone cases, literally ANYTHING. My specialty is definitely T-shirts though because I use high quality vinyl and do all my own graphic design. It fun and gives me a purpose in life.

I am no where near profiting money doing it, I have quite the bill to pay off for all the machines, but I have steady business and it gives me something to think about and accomplish each day. I can work from my recliner, my bed and from my wheelchair, which means unless I literally am unable to sit up, I can work a little each day.

There have been many days though in which I’ve felt like complete trash and had to call in sick to my sick business. We laugh about it. If you’re reading this and can think of anything you want printed let me know, I have awesome prices ;)

So that was 2017. Mesh went out and came back in. Life’s a bitch. Cheers to 2018!

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