久しぶり! Time for some TMI updates!
On December 26th, I was just about to take the plunge and fill out my JET renewal paperwork. After months of tortuous hemming and hawing and a lovely pro-con list, I’d decided not to renew, and to head back to America in August 2017. But the same day I made that fateful decision, I also had a doctor’s appointment: an ultrasound on a possible uterine myoma. My kind supervisor, who was there to translate, told me, “It’s bigger than they thought.”
More appointments and an MRI later, and it turns out my tumor is 12cm across (think grapefruit). I’ll need abdominal surgery to get it removed, with a month recovery time and periodic follow-ups every few months to make sure all is well. I acquired these new details just as Congress began discussing the fate of the Affordable Care Act. Long story short, after a deadline extension and EVEN MORE pondering, I renewed my contract. Looks like Japan hasn’t seen the last of us! I am exhausted of political talk tonight, but I will say I feel blessed to have found this while living in a country with government-mandated universal health care. The doctor quoted me around $1,000 for the cost of surgery, including my 10-day hospital stay.
This has all been an strange ride, and it’s given me an interesting peek into the world of Japanese gynecology. Check out this video I made about my experience and some of the fun ways that going to the gyno is different in Japan! (Two words: robot chair. )