Heddy’s Ready – Bring it on

Welcome to my head.  No, that’s not why it’s called, “Heddy”.  That’s me; Hedd, or Heddy, to those who know me well. But that’s a story for later… maybe.

There are a lot of things you should know about me, most you will learn later.  For now, I’ll just jump right in…

I’m 36 years old and I’ve just started the last period I will ever have.  Ever. In. My. Life. Let’s rewind to the beginning…

When you are 28 years old you think about a lot of things.  You think about your career, your future children, what you will eat for dinner, or even if your marriage will survive.  I’ll tell you something you don’t think about; Life insurance. Why would a healthy 28 year old, childless woman think about mortality to the point of contemplating life insurance?  Well when I look back, this is one of my only regrets.  You don’t know what you don’t know, and what I didn’t know is that I’d learn something about myself in the months following my marriage, that would change the course of my life.  Today, I start the first day of my last period. Period.

Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow – Helen Keller

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Follow your Arrow

Spoiler alert, this particular blog is about a week old and I have since stopped “embracing my stillness”.  I guess stillness just isn’t my thing, but that blog comes later… until then, go ahead and read this one about the full week I embraced my stillness (it was pretty painful).  And now I have to go to the gym…

I’ve found myself listening to a lot of music lately. More than I usually do because I find myself walking a lot… like a lot, because I can’t do any other damn thing.  I feel like everyone has that one thing that always puts a smile on your face, no matter what you are in the middle of.  For me, it’s always been music.

Music has this way of transporting you to a different time.  Either back to somewhere you have already been that you would like to revisit (Norah Jones and Sublime have done that a lot for me lately), transports you to somewhere you would like to be, or keeps you right where you are.  No matter what, music evokes something within, and anyone who argues that, I’d say you just aren’t listening close enough.

I have vivid memories of driving in the orange 1965 Mustang listening to a mix tape with Rancid, Sublime, Stray Cats and The Offspring, my girls riding with me headed to the beach.  The smell of sunscreen and tar comes flooding back to me, along with the conversations of “rigging it” (which meant making out) with boys and where the bonfire was at that night.  Whose house were we going to sleep over at (usually Alia’s) and who were were going to meet up with became the most important weekend topics.  The days when the only thing that mattered was your tan, whether or not you were grounded, and how you would get beer that night.

Simpler times.  And I can get back there simply by putting on my headphones.  Then rushes in the smell of sunscreen and tar with the sounds of teenage giggles infiltrating my brain.  Would I go back?  Not a chance.  But I do love to visit.  The thing is, I’m happier now.  I’m confident in me and I feel the earth under my feet.  I’ve embraced my imperfections, fixed what I wanted and am not afraid to be who I am.  I’m honest to a fault because I’m not scared of who looks back at me in the mirror.  Everyone has an arrow and it’s up to you to follow it or ignore it.  I have chosen to follow mine, no matter where it points.  I’m goin to disappoint people sometimes (which I absolutely hate) but I know that as long as I continue to follow my arrow, I’ll land on my feet.  My arrow has always brought me joy, laughter, success, and love.  I’m reminded of something my sister once said to her daughter when she asked her mom the meaning of life.  Her answer?  “Well my little one, the meaning of life, is love.”  Sister, I could not agree more.

Now if there is only one thing you take away from reading this, please let it be this; follow your arrow!  Listen to music that speaks to you, let it make you smile, laugh, cry, hurt, see, feel uncomfortable, and let yourself feel it all. Every bit of it. The good, the bad, the pain, the love, the deceit, the graciousness… feel it all and don’t apologize for how it makes you feel. “Say what you feel, love who you love, ‘cuse you just get so many trips ’round the sun, yeah, you only life once.” Thanks Kacey Musgraves.  For a small town girl you sure know a lot of shit.




You can’t see everything coming

I couldn’t sleep. My world had been spun into chaos the day before my surgery. Sometimes things happen differently than you would have wanted, but in the end it becomes the path that leads to your next adventure. So there it is, change. Not the way I had intended, but I’ll embrace it.

I woke up at 3am, jaw tight dreaming about work. I take a shower as instructed (dial from head to toe) rinced with mouthwash and took of my jewelry that has become a part of me. I went back to the bed and kissed my husband who whispered “make sure to come back to us”, grabbed my bags and waited in the dark driveway for my sister.

Pulling in it didn’t yet seem real. Even walking in, “checking in?” he said to me, like I was about to walk into a ritz. I’m most definitely not at the Ritz. As I waited with my sister we chatted about older times, our children and life. Then it was time, “all patients please come with me” the nurse said as I was ushered off to pre-opp. Another young woman stood beside me and she asked “are you having surgery too?” And to that I said “yep… what are you in for?” I couldn’t help myself. She answers “a hysterectomy”. I honestly Have no control because the next thing I remember doing was giving her a high five and saying “yeah, my hysta-sista!” We chatted for a bit and wished each other luck.

Eventually my room was filled with family and even a stuffed unicorn. Leave it to my daddy. It was time. I was pulled away in my bed and whisked down the hallway. That’s when I started to see stars. Mouth got dry. Hands started to shake. Breath got heavy. They pushed me through double doors into a large sterile room with 3 other people, lots of impressive tools and the operating table with a large stirrup I knew would be for me. My last words to my Dr. were, “if I wake up without ovaries I will find you.” We shared one last laugh. So surreal to have to slide yourself onto the table knowing when you wake up parts of you will be missing. Lights go out. Time passes. Pieces of me are lost.

Apparently for some redheads (the nurse said) painkillers don’t work. Well mother trucker! They tried everything and maxed me out! Turns out plain old Motrin works best for me. I didn’t know my ass from my thumb and only recall half of my conversations. I waited for a hospital bed for 10 hours! Thank god my other sister drove down to keep me company (and had plenty of junk food). And thanks to Shea who happened to be working at the hospital that day. The smoothie was on point. I had one of the coolest conversations with my sister, and I felt pretty damn lucky. My life is filled with great shit. The best shit. And even the bad shit can help you get to your next level of awesome.

Finally to a room! I thought I’d finally get some peace and rest, but the hospital was at full capacity which meant I’d have a shared room! Panic was on my face wondering what old farting hip-replacement bunky I would get. Would she hack all night long and smell of cabbage? Then I heard her voice… it was my haysta-sista! We shared stories and bonded as the women we still were. Both strong and taking life by the balls. I hope you read this hysta-sista. You are now a part of my story.

Another sleepless night filled with family, new friends, and laughter… and yes, it hurts to laugh. But I have relief. A weight has been lifted and now I start a new journey that wound up being different than the one I had planned. But just because you went in with your eyes wide open doesn’t mean you can see everything coming. And that is ok.

Men have bigger vaginas

As the day approaches I have started feeling a bit more anxious about it.  Before I was calm about it, almost too calm.  Now I’m starting to realize that I’m a little scared.  I’m not scared the way most would think.  I’m scared because its really playing with my biggest fear – being debilitated.  If I cannot run, lift, yoga, surf, spin… I will just absolutely burst!  I have so much energy that sometimes it’s hard for me to figure out what the fuck to do with it.  It’s honestly one of my favorite things about myself, but it can really get in the way sometimes.  When I’m grumpy my husband will say “why don’t you go run or something?” and I’m sure you can all imagine how well that plays out… until I get back from my run and thank him for being a twat.

I was telling my husband about my anxiousness in the kitchen this afternoon and we started talking about the recovery.  His answer to me was “yeah, well when I got my balls snipped..” Ummm, what the fuck, you are telling me what now? Now I must preface all of this by saying that he was joking (he is not suicidal).  My husband knows he suffers from having a mangina, and I like to remind him of that any time he sneezes and thinks he is dying. Now all of you men out there who want to complain about your outpatient surgery where you have to ice your nuts for a day (I know at least two of you who will read this… you know who you are) I just have one thing to say to you… stop your bitching!  It’s the least you could do for your woman after the many years of her taking the pill, getting an IUD (OUCH!), taking the morning after pill, bleeding once a month for 7 days (and not dying) for most of her life.  Oh, and for having your babies.  Our bodies will never be the same.  But yea, a little snip and a day of ice is an awful lot to ask of you.  I’ll say it from all of us women – Sorry, not sorry.

Now there really is no question as to who is the tougher sex.  It’s been clear since the inception of man when Eve was the only one ballsy enough to eat the damn apple.  And the truth is, the human race would cease to exist if men were the ones who had to carry and deliver babies.  Dear lord, can you imagine a man on the rag?  I’m sure us women would have to take our tough men to the hospital every month as they claim something must be horribly wrong, and how this feeling can’t at all be normal.  But we would know better, as we always do.  And we would likely have the day marked off on the calendar, the car gassed up and a fucking flask already packed in preparation to mask our eye rolls with smiles and slurs.

So I guess the creator had it right from the start… women should carry the children, ovulate, not be a pussy when they are sick, and just overall know how to suck it up.  In my personal opinion, if there is any truth to this Adam and Eve story, the bible got the interpretation wrong.  Truth is, God put the apples on the tree as a test, but not in the way we think.  I bet God said “alright, I’m going to put this tree there and tell them it’s forbidden, and the one who is tough enough to question this is who I’m betting on for the future of this race”.  So thanks for the faith in us, God.  You done good.  As it was so eloquently put in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, “you chose wisely”.  Thanks for the vagina and being omniscient enough to know that Adams was bigger.


That feeling that makes the world go round

I’ve spent years contemplating this surgery.  Years going back and forth about whether or not to take everything, some, or nothing.  There were times I thought I’d take nothing out.  Leave life to chance… then I had kids.  There was a time I thought I’d remove everything putting myself into medically induced menopause.  Ugh, yuck.  All I associate menopause with is crazier women, dry skin, hot flashes and no sex drive.  Did I mention no sex drive?  Well, no thank you.  Not for me.  Nope.

I feel like much of what makes me, well, me, are my hormones.  They help me feel sexy, take control of situations, they give me power.  I like having desires, I like having power, and I sure as shit like to feel sexy.  I want to come home and feel like I cannot wait to… well… you know. I’m not ready to lose that part of me.  I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to lose that part of me.  There we have it.  The ovaries stay.  So ovaries, hear me out; please don’t kill me. Not even I would laugh at that.

My desires stay, my sexiness stays, my emotions stay, and yes, my bitchiness stays (sorry husband).  After all, I am a fairy and if I’m confined I get feisty, and if I am trapped I die. I can’t think of anything that would make me feel more confined or trapped then losing that part of me.  So I’ll take my chances and get to live the rest of my younger life full of sex.  Great sex.  Sex that I want to have because my desires tell me to, not because I’m going through the motions.

So here is to the ovaries – May you stay and keep me feeling that feeling that makes the world go round… horny.


Fairies and other mystical things

I’ve always identified myself as a fairy.  I know, you are probably thinking, WTF, this chick is out of her mind.  And to that I will answer, proudly.

See, fairies have this light inside of them.  This light is so bright and full of energy that people want to steal it.  They want to put it on their mantle as a keepsake, something to admire, a conquest to be proud of.  But if we (fairies) are contained, we will die, then our light will be there for no one to feel.

Fairies have never liked boxes; too confining, too ridged, too stuffy.  We typically don’t draw within the lines as they they threaten our imagination.  We love people, all kinds.  We want to fill the world with beauty, love, laughter, life, kindness and mystery.  But when someone tries to capture us, to put us in a jar, we become feisty.  We do not like threats to our natural state of being free and full of life.  We will gladly share all of our beauty, love, laughter, kindness, life and mystery, but you cannot have it. It does not belong to you.

Thank you to those who allow me to fly free, this fairy loves you for it.  This fairy is still alive because I have never allowed myself to be put in a jar, though many have tried.  Thank you to my family, who even though they roll their eyes at me from time to time, they know I am a fairy.  And most days of the week, they love me for that.  The other days, well, they get out of my way.

Pre opp visit today, and I’m still damn Fairy.  Full of beauty, love, laughter, life, kindness and mystery.  14 days and counting…

Tell me; are you a fairy too? If you are, shine bright and share your light!  There are many out there who need you.




Prayers n’ other shit

I woke up the morning after sharing my blog feeling uncomfortable.  I was mentioning to my husband “I’m feeling like I should’t have shared the blog”.  My husbands immediate answer was, “I wouldn’t have”.  Now  if any of you know my husband that answer prompts a, “well no shit Sherlock”.  Captain fucking obvious over here.  Basically there are two people he would share something with, me and his mom.  Definitely not the internet.  Adorable, right? Right.

I was not uncomfortable because all of my shit was out in the open (oddly I’m OK with that).  My husband asked me why I was uncomfortable about it and my answer, “people are fucking praying for me”.   Now, first off I’d like to say, thank you for your prayers because I know they come from a place of caring and love, but I’d also like to say, don’t.  Don’t pray for me.  Prayers make me feel like I’m sick, and I’m far from sick.  My husbands response was, “well what did you want?”  Great question. So I got to thinking, what did I want?

Some of what I wanted I got.  I had several people come up to me and say the blog was funny.  I had many women tell me I was a bad ass, strong, brave… I want women to know their strength and to harness that powerful shit.  I had someone who knew me many years ago send me an email telling me that my passion for life and adventure have always been “intoxicating”.  This was such a compliment to me because that is who I am, and it felt nice to be seen.  I had one person joke with me the next day that he felt like he had to be nice to me now.  He was quite relieved when I told him I would hate nothing more than that, in which he proceeded to say “I can’t believe you are only 36” (he learned from my blog) and I politely responded by saying “fuck you”.  And just like that, the world was right again.  I guess I wanted what I always want;  People to laugh, feel less alone, think positive, and understand that it’s OK to be who you are, not what someone else want’s you to be.  F-bombs and all.

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Fucked. And not in the good way.

You know how when you get tested for something and you worry that they will ask you to come in for the results?  When you get asked to come in for the results you know you are fucked.  You. Are. Fucked.  And not in the good way.

They made me come in to hear the news.  It’s exactly how I imagined it would be.  Sheer panic on the way in.  Then you start telling yourself they mixed up your results with someone else’s.  I’m usually pretty good at telling myself stories (someday I’ll tell you the story of how I convinced myself I touched Shamu’s tongue) and I spun a lot of stories in my head on the way in. I mean some major denial is happening.  If I had just gotten a call, “Hey Heather?  Yeah, so you have Lynch Syndrome.  No big deal.  Totally won’t change your life.  K, bye!” Maybe it wouldn’t have felt so big.  But it was big.  But not big in the way I thought it would be.  The funny thing is, I think it changed my life for the better.  That feels strange to say, but I think it’s true.  The appreciation I have for life, for my body, for my family, for the things I enjoy in life… exponentially bigger now, and it was pretty big to begin with.

So life goes on.  Really, it’s not bad. And I smile all the way through because really, what else are you going to do? I had my first colonoscopy when I was 28, and I will tell you that whatever they give you during a colonoscopy is some good shit.  I call it fluffy unicorn dope. And it’s a great way to have the good old insurance company pay for your “cleansing”.  If I went to LA for that shit (pun intended) I’d have to drop some major cash, soooo #grateful! Through all of this it still didn’t dawn on me to get life insurance. Which again, is one of my biggest regrets.  Funny how they don’t want to give it to you when you have an 80% chance of cancer.

I knew the recommendation for Lynch women was to get a total hysterectomy, but that was so far away I didn’t really have to think about it.  I mean, I would still have to have children and finish breast feeding… I had so much time.  So much, wait, what?  Well, fuck.

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