It is Sunday early evening and we just returned home. The surgery went very well with no complications, but I had a couple set backs in the recovery process and needed an extra night at the hospital. The experience was much more difficult than I anticipated, and it is a lot to take in. I am deeply grateful for the close circle of friends and supporters who helped me get through this enormously challenging weekend.

I remained fairly calm before the surgery. When I became shaky, Cliff and my support team were there to give me Reiki, hold my hand and keep me grounded. The surgical team helped me feel calm and confident. Post surgery I slept for a couple hours in the recovery room and woke up very shaky and weak. Once in my room, I received more Reiki, and my close circle of women friends came and sang for me.

Cliff let me know that Dr. Kebria was very happy with how the surgery went. Of course for full results we have to wait for the pathology reports. But they did section and biopsy a small part of the uterus, and the doctor reported that he did not see the aggressive type of cancer in that area. Cliff said that Dr. Kebria seemed very optimistic. I am trying to keep my mind steady, knowing that further treatment is likely to be needed. But this news is still very positive.

Saturday I was able to take three short walks around the floor. My pain was never beyond about a 3 out of 10, and was more like a 2 most of the time. The catheter came out at about 11:00 am, and they said I needed to be able to urinate within 7 hours in order to be released. At 6:30 pm I was able to go, but I did not produce enough urine, so the catheter went back in and that determined that we would spend another night. I think it was for the best, since I still felt depleted and in need of professional care.

I anticipated waking up Sunday morning, taking a walk, getting the catheter out, peeing and going home. But that was not the story. From about 6:30 – 9:30 am I was severely nauseous. I think it was a combination of anesthesia, pain medication and very little food. The first anti-nausea drug did not work, so they tried some other options. Once those drugs kicked in and I had eaten some oatmeal and miso soup, I felt better by about 10:00 am. It was a rough three hours – very uncomfortable and discouraging. The doctors also felt I needed more IV fluids, so I felt as if I was going backwards. Even so, I was able to take two walks, and definitely was moving a little more easily.

At around 1:00 pm, the catheter was removed again, and they filled my bladder with saline solution to see if I could retain the fluid for an hour and then void. At 2:00 pm – success! That was the main pre-requisite for coming home. Still the saline content of my blood is off, so they want me to drink less plain water, and more drinks containing electrolytes. I’ll be using Emergen-C, not Gatorade!

I have seldom been in a hospital in my life, and I was truly amazed at the miracle of modern medicine. Our room was lovely and I received excellent, compassionate care. I now have Cliff and my dear friend Barbara nursing me and waiting on me at home. I look forward to a nice week! I will be enjoying delicious meals prepared by fabulous friends, watching movies, reading, playing piano, and walking.

Even at the low points, I felt completely enveloped and protected by the love of friends, family, and the Universal Divine Spirit. In this crisis, I have been deeply touched by the love I have received. Of course it makes us feel good to know that we are loved. But this experience has also helped me see more clearly how compassionate and loving people truly are, and that my situation has given them a chance to express that fundamental nature. The Dalai Lama has expressed many times that our basic human nature is kind, compassionate, loving and caring. I have never been surer of that than I am today.

With love,


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25 Responses to Home

  1. Rick Chasin says:

    So glad you are home. What amazing friends and family you have – all the compassion and love you emanate comes full circle when it’s needed most. Rest up and feel better very soon. We send you our love.

    Rick and Mary

  2. Jan Nelson says:

    I saw Char on Saturday, and she reassured me that all went well. My thoughts were with you on Friday as they are now. I’m sure that you are whole and well.

  3. JoAnna Lamparelli says:

    I am so happy your home. I have been waiting for your blog.
    Be waited on and feel better soon.
    Love JoAnna

  4. janet scheid says:

    I was waiting for your post, all the while knowing the news would be positive. That catheter/peeing thing post surgery is so common!!! I’m glad you have your loving caretaker team with you in the comfort of your own bedroom now. That will help you relax and start healing very quickly. My thoughts are with you, wishing you well very soon!

  5. Karen HC says:

    I’m very glad you’re home, Karen! As someone else also mentioned (on Facebook), it truly is amazing that you can be home a couple days after major surgery. It sounds like your support team at the hospital did a marvelous job helping you along the way, and that you’re continuing to receive excellent loving care at home.

    Another option for replenishing electrolytes is Vitalyte (used to be called Gookinaid, and I swore by it while out backpacking in hot, dry weather), which you might be able to find locally at REI. Maybe Whole Foods as well?

  6. Barbara Koles says:

    Glad that you are home, where true healing can take place. We are thinking of you with positive affirmations and love!

  7. Halle B says:

    Delighted to hear you are home and on the mend. Keeping you in my thoughts!

  8. Jessica Guerrieri says:

    “You do not know how good you are until you are called to rise.” – Emily Dickinson, seems a fitting quote for your dedicated and loving husband, family and friends. A prayer for strength and healing for you this evening.


  9. Donna Pointer says:

    Well, this all sounds very positive!

  10. I am so glad to hear that the surgery went well Karen! And so glad you have a lot of love surrounding you. Take care and keep the reports coming. -Aaron

  11. Julie Tamarkin says:

    Although I am sorry to learn that the recovery didn’t go as expected, I am so glad that you received good and compassionate care from all of your care givers and that you are now home. Today is Rosh Hashanah — the first day of the Jewish new year. It is a concentrated time where people around the world are praying for renewal and healing for the world and everyone inhabiting it. A guiding principle is the return to wholeness. In this auspicious season, may you return to vibrant health quickly and with ease!

  12. Leslie H. says:

    Thought of you constantly during the weekend, Karen. So good to know you are home where the care of your husband and friends can speed your healing. Will continue to keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

  13. Erica Steinweg says:

    So glad to hear that you are home and healing! Rest well and take good care of yourself. Thank you for the update. Lots of love.

  14. Julie Friedman says:

    Glad you are home and healing, Karen! I was thinking about you all this weekend.

  15. Miriam says:

    Hi Karen,

    So glad to hear that you are safe at home in your beautiful, peaceful and familiar surroundings. That alone will comfort you into a speedy and healthy recovery.

    Thank you so much for sharing this journey with me. It reminds me that people are so generous, caring and compassionate and that loves always finds its way through.

    Be well, eat well, and enjoy the companionship of Cliff and your friends. And, by all means, laugh your head off at those funny movies. I’m watching funny shows while I finish my taxes today–it always helps to make this drudgery less painful 🙂

    Lots of love and light.

  16. Sue Salaniuk says:

    So good to hear that all went well and you are on the road to recovery. I’ve been thinking of you so much. Blessings.

  17. Kathie Brown says:

    Welcome home, Karen. I have become more vigilant in my home yoga practice as an offering to you–and to myself. I can hear your gentle guidance as I practice (shoulder blades down, collarbones spread, lift your side chest!) I am so happy that you have a circle of loving caregivers to help you in your recovery. Thank you for sharing your experiences so eloquently. Blessings.

  18. Edie says:

    In the Big Scheme of Things, these were minor hiccups in your recovery.
    Now that you’re home, you will see and feel improvement every day. It will go fast from here.

  19. Linda Harston says:

    So happy and relieved your surgery went well. So sorry you had to deal with some complications and stress during recovery. Maybe your body is telling you toTAKE IT EASY! We all miss our wonderful yoga classes but the most important goal is for you to regain your strength and heal.
    I will continue to pray for you. Fondly, Linda

  20. Ellen says:

    Dearest Karen,
    I thought of you all weekend and am so glad you are home. Blessings to you and hope you are enjoying some sunshine and laughter today as you rest and heal. xoxo

  21. Cathy Henry says:

    So glad to hear you are home though with a few bumps along the way. It sounds like they were extra careful to make sure you were really ready to be home, which is good. You will have smooth sailing in the comfort of your own home with those you love to care for you and all the prayers and positive energy coming your way. Hopefully the pathology reports will be positive as well. Hugs, C

  22. Gina S says:

    Even at a trying time you remain a teacher of compassion! So much love and healing thoughts to you Karen.

  23. Bess Kaplan says:

    rain notwithstanding, it’s great to be home, isn’t it, karen?

  24. jyoti says:

    wish you the best of health and speedy recovery.

  25. Mary Finney says:

    Sending loving thoughts your way Karen. May this day bring you more healing and each day forward. Your body, mind, heart and spirit are beautiful beyond words. Hugs, Hugs and more Hugs!

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