the what-ifs that follow answers

January 2017

Last week, we visited a specialist for the first time, and he diagnosed me with endometriosis. Now, from my understanding, the only way to 100% diagnose endometriosis is through laparoscopic surgery, in which they send a tiny video camera into me to find and remove the endometriosis. But this specialist said that there is one specific spot inside of me where a sensation of pain can indicate the presence of endometriosis. He did a vaginal ultrasound (kind of strange – basically, they put a something like a condom on the ultrasound wand and put it inside of you), and while he put some pressure on different parts of me and it didn’t hurt, he put pressure on that one spot and my first reaction was WHATEVER YOU ARE DOING IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE TOUCHING THAT PART OF ME. Pain isn’t quite the right word for it, but it was uncomfortable and I wanted to kick that wand out of his hand.

Endometriosis has not come up seriously in conversations before because I don’t have obvious symptoms – in fact, it seems pretty challenging to diagnose in general, since not everyone affected with it shows any symptoms. I have bad cramps when I start my cycle, but most people have cramps to some extent, right? Mine can be paralyzing, and I am not a wimp when it comes to pain, so I knew that mine had to be worse than normal, but some of the other symptoms of endometriosis are pain with intercourse, lower back pain,  pain with urination or bowel movements, and irregular cycles. I have none of those.

The next step is the laparoscopic surgery. After they remove the endometriosis, there is a six month window where we will have increased fertility chances, so that’s exciting.

I am grateful to have direction, to have possible answers, to have next steps. Also, I’m grateful to have something to blame when I am on the couch with a heating pad complaining about how it feels like there is a knife slicing through my insides.

I am scared because what if this still doesn’t work? What if we still can’t get pregnant, and there’s something else? OR what if we do get pregnant? It’s been so long since we consciously made the decision to go off birth control and start trying to conceive. Doubt has slowly crept in – What if you don’t actually want to be a mom? What if it’s not all that you have built it up to be in your mind? What if you miscarry? 

The what-ifs will kill me if I’m not careful.

I still want to recognize God’s sovereignty in all of this. If they clear out the endometriosis with the surgery, whether or not we get pregnant is still in God’s hands. The timing is in his control. The safety and health of any future babies is held by him. I still want to live surrendered to his plan… and the anticipation of what might be ahead is pushing me into a deeper dependence on him.