One year ago today was the big day, the surgery, the proctocolectomy. The day I kissed that diseased, poor excuse for a lower GI tract, good-bye. That stupid colon, it couldn’t even call itself a colon! More like a forest, a forest of giant mushrooms. Or so I have been told. I never got to see it.
In some aspects, I can’t believe it has already been an entire year! It seems like it was not that long ago I was staring intently at the ceiling of my hospital room, just wishing it all to be over with already.
Then on the other hand, it seems like that surgery must have happened in another lifetime. I look at how far I have come. I went from barely being able to walk 200 feet to doing 5.5 mi hikes in the woods with no problem.
A lot of you ask, “How are you?” Well, the short answer . . . “Good!” I’m sure you are looking for more then a one-syllable answer though. I am just living my life. I am trying hard to be as normal as I can. And I’m trying very hard not to pay too much attention to all the statistics out there about life with FAP (which is easier said then done). In the end, I just remind myself to take it one day at a time.
Also I know some of are curious to what is on deck for me. Well besides enjoying the remaining last half of summer (Where the hell did the first half go, by the way?! It was only in the 60s last week!) I have two medical appointments coming up.
1. In Mid September I have an appointment with my colorectal surgeon. Just the 1-year anniversary scoping of the j-pouch. He’ll give the j-pouch a little look-see, make sure all looks good and check for the start of any polyp growths. Technically, we shouldn’t see the start of any polyp growth in the pouch for another 4 years. However, the 2 cm area connecting the pouch to the anus is still made up of colon tissue, and that area could grow polyps anytime and needs regular monitoring.
2. I also have another upcoming visit to The Mayo Clinic. This visit will be much like the past visits, except during the Mayo visit we had removed all the polyps and we’re hoping when he looks in there this time it will still be as clean as a whistle. If it is still clean (meaning no new polyp growth) then I will not have to come back to Mayo for a few YEARS! YES YEARS! But if he does see some baby fuckers, oops I mean polyps, starting to grow he will obliterate them with his laser gun (sounds like I’m joking, right? But I’m not. Really.) That would just mean that this is a bit more aggressive then we had originally thought (um, hoped?) and we will be visiting Minnesota more often then we had planned.
Again, I invite anyone, even (gasp!) anonymous readers, to ask questions. I plan to put them aside and when I have compiled a few of them doing a FAQ post again. You can send in the question via comments or via email (new feature, see the thing below that looks like an envelope? Send your FAQ directly to me!) Try me, ask anything. I dare you. No wait, I double-dog-dare you.