Trying to Stay Strong

June 1, 2017
So, I was trying to figure out what I would do this summer in this post. Basically, I have very little choice in the matter at this point and have to stay in Shanghai again. It's hard for me to find the words to express this, so I'll just be blunt about it. I need another surgery. I do not have health insurance in the States, so I have to stay here and have it done over the summer. I'm trying VERY, VERY hard to stay positive about this, but I'd be lying if I were saying this is going to be easy for me. I'm still trying to recover from PTSD from what happened to me last summer. Of course needing another surgery was very difficult news to swallow and the absolute last thing I wanted to hear. This will be a challenge for me to get through this mentally.

Let me explain a little bit more. This surgery has nothing to do with my back. It's on my uterus, actually and it's considered a "moderate" surgery. I just keep telling myself that if I could get through last year's surgery, then I can get through anything. I'm going to go ahead and write out some positives so that way I can feel better about this whole thing.

*This summer a few of my friends will be around for part of the summer, so I won't be completely alone here.

* Like I mentioned, compared to the huge ordeal my back surgery was, this surgery is going to be a lot less invasive.

* I am going to move to a bigger apartment here soon, so I'll be all set up in my new place for the summer. In my new place there is an elevator, unlike where I'm living now. I heard that it is hard to walk up stairs while recovering from the surgery I'm getting, so thank goodness I won't have to worry about that.

* At my new apartment, I can get food delivered directly to my door. I'll be restricted as to what I can carry, so now that I know I can order those groceries, I'm relieved.

* I'll have a really relaxing time since I won't be able to do a whole lot during my recovery. I always say I want more time to read, and now I'll have it.

* I can get this surgery done over the summer so I won't have to miss any days with my class and will be ready to teach next year. That's another huge relief. I didn't want to miss any days with my current students mainly because last year I had to miss two months with them.

* This surgery is something that I really need to have done, so once it's over with, I feel like my quality of life will be better.

* I can go to a private hospital this time. Last time, I was in a Chinese public hospital, so not that many people spoke English. At this private hospital, it's just a lot cleaner, I can communicate more easily, and I'm hoping the actual rooms will be better.

* If I have no complications, I only need to stay there for three days which is really nothing compared to the 55 days I spent in the hospital last summer.

* This surgery should be covered by my health insurance. I will have to pay about $8,000 (USD) up front, but I should eventually get it all back.

* One of my wonderful friends has already agreed to sign for me while I go under. I am relieved to know that this is taken care of because last year for my back surgery it posed a huge problem.

* My bosses were very understanding. I felt nervous to tell them that I had another health issue, but one of my bosses said, "You can't help these things. Let's face it together." I don't have to agonize about losing my job or anything like that, which is less for me to worry about.

Yes, I won't be able to go home and see my family for the second summer in a row, but I know they understand and I'll just have to find a way to make up for lost time later. Since I'm a teacher, I really do get a lot of vacation time, so I'll be able to go home next summer or possibly for Chinese New Year.

At this point, I'm just anticipating the surgery anxiously, and want to get it done already so that I can start with the recovery process, which is about two months. Again, that's no time at all compared to my back surgery which took a year and I still have restrictions.

Has there been a time in your life that really challenged you? How did you find the inspiration and strength to stay positive through something difficult?
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