Friday, October 12, 2012

Medevac

Soon after we got back to Brazil from R&R, I began having medical problems. I won't go into detail, because, you know, it's gross and whatnot, but I did see some doctors in Brasilia.  They had all kinds of opinions, ranging from "nothing is wrong with you" to "this is what's wrong with you, even though NONE of the symptoms match the diagnosis" (side note: hospital emergency room floors in Brasilia are cleaned by dumping a dirty bucket of water on the floor and squeegeeing the waste out the front entrance of the hospital).  Before long, I was in enough pain that I really didn't leave my bed for several weeks and it was decided by my team (which consists of Mitch, the embassy health unit, the state department, and myself) that I would fly home to the US for some of their fancy 'merican doctorin'. 

The problem with a medevac is that you lose your medical clearance and may not return to post until it's reinstated, so I had to plan to be gone a long time from my family.  This is another one of those instances where this lifestyle really just sucks. However, I knew I couldn't spend the rest of my life in bed, because there aren't enough reruns of 90210 in portuguese for that. So, I got to work in the kitchen, making three weeks worth of freezer meals for my people to eat in my absence.  I chose to fly home to Spokane, rather than the medevac point of Miami, and am so glad I did.  My amazing family has been taking good care of me. Also, it's pumpkin latte season here in America, so double win. I just hope I'm not still around for eggnog latte season.

At my first appointment, the doc knew right away what the problem was (and no, it wasn't what the Brazilian doctors thought), and by some amazing stroke of luck, he had a surgical cancellation for the next day.  I will confess that I laid my sob story on pretty thick so I could get home quickly--four hungry children, overworked husband, terrorists at the door, etc.  But hey, whatever works, no?  So, I had a complete hysterectomy this week at the tender young age of 29 (my story, my fabrications, so shut it).   Everything went well, and the doc's diagnosis was spot on.  Now it's just a waiting game while I recover and can go back to Brazil and my babies.  To reward myself for partnering with my crappy uterus for so long, I got a fab new purse.  Kind of like a fine leather replacement uterus which accessorizes better than the old one.

My narcotic-influenced sense of humor is typically horrible.  Every time a new doctor or nurse explains things to me since the hysterectomy, I adopt a solemn expression, lower my voice, and say, "but I'll still be able to have children, right?"  The look on their faces makes me laugh and laugh. Which hurts.

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7 comments:

Martha Terry said...

Kate, you kill me! Wishing you a speedy recovery, so you can get back to Mitch and those four hungry children.

Sadie said...

You poor thing! Glad you're in good hands and a good place for this recovery. Friends who have done this say once you're over the initial surgery recovery, it feels like a brand new life! And I laughed oh so hard at your question for new doctors :-). Get well soon!

Nomads By Nature said...

You crack me up!! Hope the Drs fully appreciated your wit! - Drink up on those lattes and fall and the smell of fresh, new leather purses (btw - that uterus worked on four kids, should be four new purses...just sayin'), and spoiling family love and get strong and recovered so you can get back to your peeps in the Big B. I know they miss you terribly, beside being starved and exhausted from beating back the bad guys in your absence. :) you really do crack me up!

Lynda said...

Yowza Kate! Hope you are healing up by the minute and getting spoiled rotten. Buy all the new stuff you can before you go back to being the crackerjack Chief of staff for that darling family of yours.

Donna said...

For something so un-hilarious, this is hilarious. Feel better soon, and keep laughing - if it doesn't split those stitches.

Bfiles said...

oh my goodness I haven't been here in a while! So sorry you have been suffering...but glad you have good care and are on the road to recovery now (I thought Brazil had pretty good medical care?). Hope you can get back to your family soon.

Dani said...

oh wow, wishing you a speedy, speedy recovery and I have to say, I don't think I've laughed as hard as I did at your question for the doctors in a long, long time. Take care, get well, travel safe!