I’d like to apologise to everyone who messaged and asked when the next blog post will be up.. I could say that I’m a serious writer type and needed to wait for inspiration to strike, but that would be a complete lie :p
In actual fact, I let recent events completely consume me and stopped living… Just existing. Couldn’t bring myself to go out, meet anyone, speak to anyone or have any sort of human interaction. I’m truly blessed to have such great friends who didn’t give up on me in disgust and still treat me better than I deserve.
This post might be longer than the others..
We had a fantastic time in Turkey! Alhamdulillah. I loved every minute. I’d booked a hotel close to all the main places we wanted to see so there wasn’t much walking to do.. Or so I thought. Oh my goodness… My legs would be aching at the end of each day! Felt like they were going to drop off!
And the food… It was utterly delicious. God. I miss it. Simple, well-cooked food that tasted amazing. I feel like we’ve been cheated here in the UK. I never buy donner because it seems so disgusting, all those fats… But in Istanbul, we discovered real donner, made from meat. And boy was it good! And Turkish coffee…. Mmmm. Ok as you can probably tell.. I love food lol. Sadly, we’ve now given away or eaten all of the Turkish delight we brought back. It was something else. Nothing like the overly sweet, artificial tasting, jelly squares that are sold here.
We visited some incredible places but Topkapi Palace was my favourite. The Museum of Islamic Science and Technology was great too as I love all things science! But it’s still a work in progress and tucked away on the side.
Thankfully, my bag behaved really well. No hassle at the airports, I wasn’t asked what it was, I had no problem taking my supplies in my hand luggage.
I’m not sure why I was so worried, this flight was a LOT easier than the one I took during an active flare of UC.
There’s no problem finding clean loos in Istanbul.. Just make sure you keep a stash of 1 lira coins on your person! I was caught short once and had to run back to the hotel.. Luckily we weren’t too far away at the time.
One thing I still can’t get my head round is that I had my picture taken far too many times! Standing in the courtyard of Topkapi Palace, walking along the street, reading Quran or raising my hands in prayer at Suleymani Masjid, sitting on a swing… Snap, snap, snap!! I just don’t get it. Of course, I was never asked for permission. Is a niqab-wearing woman really such a rare sight? :p I can assure you we’re all perfectly normal!
So we got back on Tuesday 7th October, in time for my operation (the big one!) on Thursday 9th October. I spent Wednesday with family and prepared myself mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically for surgery. This was it. InshaAllah (God willing) the UC would finally be gone for good. I would be rectumless the next day!
Out of habit, I checked my online hospital record around midnight on Wednesday and received a huge shock. The date for surgery was listed some three weeks away, on the 27th! To top it off, I couldn’t even find the original letter. Luckily, I’d taken a picture of it to send to a friend and it was sent back to me so I knew I wasn’t going bonkers. It definitely said that my surgery was on the 9th. I called the hospital without much hope as it was so late. They couldn’t tell me anything.
I was feeling quite numb at this point and still not daring to believe that the date had been changed.
I woke up at 6AM, made sure everything was ready and my bag was packed then went for a shower. Finally, at 7AM I called the Admissions Unit only to be told that my name wasn’t on the surgery list for that day and my letter ‘might still be in the post’. I quickly hung up before I broke down. It was a horrible feeling. Everything had been leading up to this point for the past few months. Surgery was supposed to make me feel BETTER… And now that was taken from me.
I mumbled something to my brother about not needing to go to the hospital anymore then fled to my room and dissolved into tears. Such gut-wrenching pain.. I can’t expect anyone to understand the disappointment, hurt and anguish I felt. I felt completely cut up and broken. I somehow managed to message a few close friends to tell them what had happened as I knew how worried they were. I could hear more messages coming in but I was in no shape to even look at my phone.
Looking back, there’s a very important lesson to be learnt here. I know where I went wrong. I relied too much on the operation being a means of cure rather than focusing on the One who cures us when we are ill. Nothing happens without His Will and I need to remember that. Everything happens for a reason and although I’m still trying to accept what happened, I know that Allah is the most Merciful and does what’s best for us, though we may not realise it at the time.
I phoned my surgeon’s secretary a few hours later because I wanted to know what was going on. How could they be so careless?! They don’t realise the emotional and psychological trauma this causes. It may be a case of simply switching dates for them, but it’s a lot more than that for us.
Seems my operation was cancelled and they DID send a letter… Only I didn’t receive it. She was very apologetic and I know that mistakes can be made. But seriously… How hard is it to PHONE? They’ve got my mobile number, home number, dad’s number and email address!
Lo and behold… The postman dropped a letter through the postbox later that day. Perfect timing, huh?! Your operation on the 9th of October has been cancelled but through some astoundingly impressive work by both the hospital and Royal Mail, we’ll make sure the letter reaches you later that day!
It was dated 29th September. 29th!! We still hadn’t left for Turkey on the 29th! It made me so angry because we could have had another week away if only they’d thought to phone me. (Yes, I’m still annoyed about that) if they’re going to cancel a major operation which is less than two weeks away, what on earth made them think that it’s ok to trust the postal system?!
I sound pretty angry and I am.. I keep telling myself that it’s for the best but it hit me pretty hard. If it wasn’t for some fantastic friends who made plans to see me at the weekend and made sure they u were there to hear me moan about all this, I’m not sure how I could have coped. And special thanks to an awesome friend who came to see me on Sunday.. I had the best time and really enjoyed myself! ❤
I switched off again after the weekend, retreated into my cocoon and found it hard to leave the room. Didn’t feel like speaking to anyone. So when I received a phone call from an unknown number, I decided not to answer then sent a text asking who it was. Turns out it was my surgeon… They’re giving me a new date for surgery THIS Thursday 23rd October inshaAllah! Unfortunately my surgeon won’t be the one performing it…. It’ll be a robot 😮 controlled by 2 surgeons, of course. I hadn’t heard of this sort of thing before but I’ve been reassured. It seems just as safe, and much more stable than human hands operating. Yes, I’ve heard every robot-centred joke from my brothers, complete with sound effects and evil laughs.
So I need to go for a another pre-op assessment tomorrow (Monday) and then surgery will be on Thursday. It finally feels like things are looking up.. InshaAllah this time next week I’ll be without a rectum.
Onwards and upwards!