At our school board meeting a few weeks back, the president of our local hospital joined to share the medical community's perspective on COVID's impact in our community. We live in a county that has the highest COVID positive testing rate is the state. We've been making national news for our significant spikes...1/3 test came back positive just yesterday. As the board was making decisions about what method of school to be in, this doctor shared that our local hospitals are full. Surgeries are being cancelled because they don’t have the beds. He said some people are going to get calls tonight saying, sorry but your surgery tomorrow is cancelled. It’s not heart surgeries or emergency appendectomies, but rather cancer patients and elective surgeries.
There are a lot of opinions about school and the data he shared and COVID. And I think sometimes these facts and figures don’t seem real unless you have a person connection to help you understand this. So I am here to share that this is me. I have been one of those people. What was supposed to be my final BRCA related surgery process started in February and was supposed to be finished in by August. It’s October and I am still waiting. I’m slotted for December 3rd. I don’t currently have a surgery time on the books yet which makes me worried that I am going to be the first one bumped if Wisconsin doesn't get their shit together.
I don't mean to sound whiney or really even to complain. I feel very thankful that I was even able to get my phase 1 surgery done in February as the first few cases hit Wisconsin. I was able to have a support person with me in the hospital still leading up to surgery and actually didn’t have anyone stay with me during the stay, so the visitor restrictions that were out in place wouldn’t have changed much for me. But women who had the same surgery just a few weeks later had very different experiences.
I was able to go attend a check up in person two weeks later to get my drains pulled but all other checks were cancelled or done through tele-med. I wasn’t able to get an in person appointment until July to even talk about what needed to be done during the phase 2 surgery. By the time that finally happened, their August surgery schedule was already filled with people who had to delay their surgeries during the months of March, April, May, or June.
I will absolutely survive if this phase two surgery gets bumped again. But it is still frustrational the ability for a women's body to be put back together as whole is deemed to be "elective" in the first place. The plan during phase one left the incisions in a way that we know doesn't look good; the focus was just to get the tissue to survive. Phase two is when those incisions will be closed up and the shape of everything will be smoothed out. To the outside world, I look fine, normal, some might even say better than before. But I know what it looks like underneath it all. I'm also finally removing my ovaries. I am ready to be done. It will also cost me another deductible if it has to be moved to the next calendar year. Let's go Wisconsin! Wear the mask! Wash your hands! Stay home whenever you can!