“you must be so happy to be home!!”

I got home a couple of hours ago, and it’s hard to explain.  I’m very glad that I’m home, and not in the hospital anymore, but I’m just not HAPPY, you know? 

I think mostly it’s the pain.  Maybe having surgeries on two main body areas at the same time wasn’t so smart.  It’s hard to find a comfortable position, and then of course once I get there something happens and I have to move again… a trip to the bathroom, a bad coughing spell, time to take medicine, dropping my book right on top of my stitches…

The pathology report on the hysterectomy and ovaries part of my surgery came back completely benign.  Yes, I’m glad that there was no cancer there, but it also makes me kind of sad that to save my life, we had to get rid of the totally normal parts of me that grew such wonderful babies, KWIM?   And have I ever told you how much I hate hot flashes??

 I guess it’s grief, too.  Loss.  Making a list of what we’ve lost this year would be a long process.  Coming home today from losing my other breast, losing my fertility… it’s hard. 

Pain, body image issues, grief, loss, fear, stress…  yes, I’m glad to be home, but I’m not happy right this minute.  I’m sad, and I’m hurting inside and out.  So please don’t stop praying for me quite yet, OK?  I still need you.

37 thoughts on ““you must be so happy to be home!!”

  1. Don’t be happy.Just be.
    We are here,praying. On the other side of the world ,in Norway,I have been cleaning my windows today and thinking about you,praying that you too will be cleaning windows again one day soon and just BE.
    Love ,Emma

  2. Elizabeth, I do not know you, I found you by accident and your story has touched my sole. I pray for you and check you site everyday.
    The body parts that are gone do not make you the person you are. I know you realize that, just had to say it. Look into your children’s eyes and you will see the person you are. Your blog shows the person you are. You will heal soon and your life will be better.

  3. Very much holding you in prayers here too; England is a long way away, but our heavenly Father has you in his hands.

  4. I agree with Emma — just BE. My mom had Hodgkins disease when she was in her late 30’s. I wouldn’t say she was “happy” during that time. But, I think one of the things I learned from her experience is to just “be” during these times. Don’t really expect anything in particular out of yourself. I hope that one day, in the not-too-distant future, you will be better as she eventually was — and still is, at 75 years old.

  5. Rest assured, prayers for you will absulutely continue. I’m so thankful to hear that the pathology report was negative for cancer. I completely agree that you need to just “be” right now. You WILL come out on the other side of this. Sending a warm hug and a “Welcome Home” to you.

  6. I had a hysterectomy a almost 2 years ago. It was a TAH, for a large(1600 gram) fibroid tumor.. lots of pulling and tugging and huge incision to get it out. The pain was the hard part once I got home. The pain meds made it hard to focus on reading or knitting, and made my eyes a bit blurry, and made me feel a bit fluttery inside.. so it was hard to be distracted by my favorite things. But the best thing I did do was take the meds according to schedule that first 10 days, so the pain never got “ahead” of me.

    And ice bags on the belly. At the end of the day, the swelly belly syndrome was something else those first months afterwards.. so a cool pack on my belly was great. Stool softener was important, and lots of fluids.

    The website hystersisters.com was very valuable for finding and sharing info with other women at the same point in their recovery process.

    And while my children were older, and I was not battling cancer, there was still a real sense of grief and loss that had to be worked through, even though I was quite glad to have the fibroid monster gone. I just let myself grieve and get through it. Putting the time into recovery now will pay off later, which is so hard to do when you have a busy family, but very important… so let the dust bunnies multiply as much as you can stand, and rest.

    Just thought I would share, and know I am praying for you from not far down the road in NC…

  7. Dear Elizabeth,
    I just want you to
    know that I am thinking of you and praying for you!!
    I do hope that it is some comfort for you to know that
    someone who doesn’t know you at all is thinking of you many,
    many times a day and rooting for you!! I wish so much that I could
    help you in some corporal works way, but, prayers must be sufficient.
    God bless you,
    Jennifer B.

  8. I agree with everyone above. Prayers for you and your family will not stop just because you are home from the hospital with two good pathology reports by the sounds of things. Just BE.

    In a couple of days your parents will BE there. In a couple of days something will BE better for you, then in a week things will BE even better etc. etc. The state of BEING will get you there one second, one minute, one hour, one day, one step at a time. You have to start this journey somewhere and you are home from the hospital so just BE okay with that for today. The other issues will resolve themselves eventually.

    Just BE alive and know you are surrounded by love, prayers, thoughts, family, friends you know and many you don’t, and we will BE HAPPY that you are home. That’s easy!

    I’m thinking that you had two surgeries for the price of one set of pain killers. When you recover, you won’t have another surgery waiting – I can BE thankful for that too.

    Prayers, peace and patience to you.

  9. elizabeth, i am so thankful for the good reports! that news literally made me cry with joy and thankfulness for god’s mercy.

    offer your pain up, it seems to me that is a very good use of your time and energy right now. for whatever reason, god has chosen to unite you to his son’s suffering in a very personal way, and although you would of course wish this cup had passed you by, the noble way you drink from it is a true confession of faith and is a light to the world.

    praying for you all the time. love, rowena___.

  10. Elizabeth, “Amen” to all of the above. You will be prayed for, rest assured.
    Now rest up and remember to read lightweight books if you’re going to drop them!
    Love and peace and good nights’ sleep to you.

  11. You need not be happy just now, dear Elizabeth–you have so much to sort out in your mind and heart. But do allow others to be happy for you! Happiness will return, and it will come to you through those you love and those who love you.

    We are thanking God for a good outcome to your surgery.

  12. I’m happy to hear the pathology news, but my heart is heavy that you have so much pain and loss to deal with. Take the time to heal your body. It is also right to take the time to grieve. I hope the love from so many people, all over the world, helps you through these dark times and provides some small comfort. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  13. more of the same from this area …. lots of prayers headed your way! I agree about lightweight books 🙂 That is a great idea!
    Much Love and many peaceful thoughts. Hope you have a good rest this weekend!

  14. Been praying for you a lot. The picture of your hand with the Rosary is awesome. I hope you know that you are showing your children how to deal wtih adversity and keep thier faith in God.

  15. Still praying and offering up here, Elizabeth! I am so sorry you are in pain, that is so draining. One minute at a time….


  16. Dear Elizabeth ~

    I”m sorry you are sad. Your sadness is so understandable and is a normal and expected part of the grieving process. But, knowing that does not make it any easier. The sad zone is a hard and scary place to spend time and feels so lonely. Your world has shifted and will never be the same. But, that doesn’t mean your life won’t be good again, because it will; just different. It doesn’t mean you won’t be happy again, because you will. Life will go on, but in a new way that will make you and your family richer for the experience. What you have lost isn’t what defines you as the woman you are. What you have lost has nothing to do with what kind of mother you are. What you have lost does not speak to the loving wife you are to Dixon. I know you know these things. But you are caught between the knowing and believing. Give yourself time and be patient and gentle with yourself. You are the same as you have always been – one incredible wife and mother with an abundance of love, intelligence, courage, humor, steadfastness, talent, integrity, and tenacity.

    So, dear Elizabeth, hold fast to your sense of humor. Try to laugh at least once a day; more, if you can. Throw you worries, sadness, and uncertainty high and away. Just BE in the moment.

    Love and prayers ~

  17. Dear Elizabeth,

    I don’t know what I could possibly add to what others have written. But, oh my gosh, did you think for a second that we would stop praying for you? Never! We may be praying now for different things, but we will still be praying.

    Be gentle with yourself. Acknowledge yur pain; you can’t with it away. Let yourself grieve your losses and hang on tightly to your blessings: your husband, your children, your mom and dad, Jane, A.J, David and Nicholas, and the many,many friends you have.

    Love, Nancy

  18. Rest assured you are in our thoughts and prayers are constantly going up!

    What wonderful and wise friends you have, just take it one day at a time, read all these words of comfort and KNOW we love you.

    I am so thankful that you’ve gotten good news on your tests, soon the pain will ease and you can enjoy those beautiful kids of yours, but for now, as everyone has said…just be.

    Lots of love and prayers!

  19. Oh, my dear, sweat Elizabeth, of course we will continue to pray. We never stopped. You have been on my heart and in my mind almost constantly this week as I’ve gone about my daily tasks and during this wicked bad flu bug that hit my family. One day as I was struggling more then usual I stopped to offer it up for you. While in prayer I felt prompted to ask St. Raphael for his intercession. I’m sorry to say that I didn’t know anything about St. Raphael other then he is an Archangel. Well, after praying I had to know more about this saint that God had just prompted me to ask for help from so I googled him. I thought maybe he was a patron for cancer patients, but no that wasn’t it. He is patron of singles, travelers, nurses and doctors. But here is the fantastic part, his name I found out means “God Heals”!! So, long story short I now know who to ask for intercessory prayers from. God is good!

    Rest, be at peace and know that God is with you.

  20. Oh thank God about the benign pathology result.

    I am praying for you. I cant imagine how difficult this time must be for you. May God be with you.



  21. I am very glad to read that you are home. I can’t imagine all you are processing right now. Rest assured that you are being held and embraced by all the lovely prayers to help you heal. I am thinking of you, praying with and for you…

  22. Will keep up the prayers. Cannot begin to imagine the difficulties you are facing, hope the pain issues are eventually under control, coping with post op pain is very draining. May God the father continue to shelter you under his wing.

    God bless

    Sandra, United kingdom xxxx

  23. Dear Elizabeth ~

    I was praying for you this morning and the Beatles song “Let it Be” popped into my head. When I listen to this song, I think of our Blessed Mother. When Lennon and McCartney wrote the lyrics, Mary was used in reference to one of their mothers – I can’t remember which one. But, no matter. One of the beauties of music is that we each hear our own song. Don’t worry, our prayers continue, night AND day, because you have friends all over the world.

    Love and prayers ~

    Let It Be
    When I find myself in times of trouble
    Mother Mary comes to me
    Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
    And in my hour of darkness
    She is standing right in front of me
    Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
    Let it be, let it be.
    Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

    And when the broken hearted people
    Living in the world agree,
    There will be an answer, let it be.
    For though they may be parted there is
    Still a chance that they will see
    There will be an answer, let it be.
    Let it be, let it be. Yeah
    There will be an answer, let it be.

    And when the night is cloudy,
    There is still a light that shines on me,
    Shine on until tomorrow, let it be.
    I wake up to the sound of music
    Mother Mary comes to me
    Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
    Let it be, let it be.
    There will be an answer, let it be.
    Let it be, let it be,
    Whisper words of wisdom, let it be

  24. Pain rots. Prayer helps.

    re dropping books —– did the noise blocker head phones ever find their way back home? If so, “AUDIOBOOKS!”

    I’m happy the path reports are back and benign. I’m happy you’re home. I’m happy you’re ALIVE!!

    I’m praying.

  25. So many moving, wise, insightful and humorous comments..I back them all. Hugs, smiles, and just being……..

  26. I am writing you from Minnesota. Such a tender spot in my heart, I hold for you. I offer up my prayers and sacrifices for your comfort and health and happiness.

    I have a funny Mary story to share. During a botched spinal tap in the OR, I was whisper the words “Mary, Mary, Mary” to myself. The nurse took pity on me and asked my family and friend in the waiting room what I might mean. So they offered to bring my best friend, Mary, into OR to comfort me. I didn’t understand totally but said I was okay. I continued praying, “Oh Mama, Mama Mary” and then they offered to bring in my mother from OR and then I got it, they didn’t understand that I was praying to my Mother, Mary. I told them to look at my scapular and said, that Mother Mary.

    That time was so difficult but miracles abounded that were better seen and appreciated when the darkest time lifted. I have been praying that our same and shared Mother Mary rocks you and comforts you and carries you through because surely Goodness and Mercy follow you all the days of your life. I am counting on it.

    Love from a Minneapolis Girl.

  27. Been following your “story” and praying for you. I will continue.

    Last summer I had a hysterectomy and pelvic reconstruction (from a badly prolapsed uterus). Even though I lost my fertility when my uterus prolapsed, it was still hard. And the pain much worse than I imagined. Try to focus on the positive (difficult, I know). And let others help. That’s a hard one for mamas — we’re the doers. But it is very important for your recovery and especially for your longer fight. If someone offers to help, it means they want to help — let them. Let your children do for you — even the littles can help in little ways. And then just tell them “aren’t they so great for helping.” You’re benefiting from the help and they are benefiting from being great helpers. It really is a good thing.

    I hope that you will use your blog to call for help — prayers sure, and anything else others can do for you (Complete strangers will help you, I promise! Even I can send Pizza Hut gift cards!).

  28. Dear Elizabeth,

    “Do not fear what may happen tomorrow !
    The same loving Father who cares for you today will care for you tomorrow…and every day.
    Either He will shield you from pain and suffering, or He will send you unfailing strength to bear it.
    So be at peace !
    Put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginings.”

    St. Francis de Sales.

    The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass will be offered for your intentions.

  29. Just letting you know that you continue to be in our many prayers. You do not need to be strong right now Elizabeth. God tells us that He is with us in our grief and He hears our cries. He is right beside you through all of this and will not leave you. It is times like this that teach us that God wants us to live one day at a time. I pray that you heal quickly and that feel God’s presence every step that you take.

  30. Your heart and your body have so much to process right now. Just rest in His arms like a babe. Praying for you and yours, for peace, for healing and for the return of happiness when the time is right. I’m so glad that you have been surrounded by love and prayers.

  31. My family and I continue to pray for you and yours. I have the kids on it! My mother in law always told me God hears the prayers of the children especially.

  32. Dear Elizabeth,

    You don’t know me, but I want you to know that I’m thinking of you and praying for you. From what I’ve read on your blog, you are a wonderful Catholic wife and Mommy – the kind of Mommy I hope and pray to be able to be someday (but I’m not sure if I can ever be a Mommy. I am almost forty three and have had two surgeries so far for endometriosis stage four.).

    My favorite devotion is the rosary. Praying it gives me such comfort and peace. I will remember you, your family, and all of your intentions in my daily rosary.

  33. Dear Elizabeth, I’m so very sorry for your grief. Please know that i am praying fervently for you. God bless you!

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