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My Brother Still Guides Me


The last two memories I've shared have been frightening and negative. I thought I would skip ahead about fifteen years and share something that fundamentally changed me. Literally saved my life. It is very positive. Prepare to have warm and fuzzies.

My husband and I have two children. When I had my youngest my husband and I decided no more children and he chose to have a vasectomy.

At the time they were eight and ten. My youngest had entered second grade and my oldest, fourth. I was missing my babies and felt an almost compulsive need to have another child. There were a couple of obstacles. First was my husband's vasectomy. However, I was confident that I could talk him into a reversal. I'd noticed he was missing having a baby/toddler around as much as I did.

Second was more complex. You see I had never had regular cycles. I could (and did) get pregnant easily. I was on the pill when I got pregnant for my second (NO I DID NOT MISS) and we were using condoms and spermicidal gel with my first. Somehow I managed to get preggers.

However, at that point, I hadn't had a cycle in about three years. The longest I'd ever not had one. I'd been for my annuals and had no obvious problems, no hormonal deficits or issues, I simply did not slough and bleed. I declined the drugs they wanted to give me. I'd been through every recommended treatment at least three times. Provera made me bleed for MONTHS the last time I took it. BCP made me morning sick and I would randomly start gushing. I have contact dermatitis - anything stays on my skin too long and I get open bleeding sores. I have absolutely no desire to try to imbed something INSIDE me.

I went to the doctor to talk to him about what I needed to do to ensure I was still fertile. During the exam, he found large cysts on my ovaries. They hadn't been there seven months previous. He was also concerned with other physical symptoms I was having. He actually recommended a hysterectomy.

I lost my composure a bit. I was there to ensure I could safely carry a baby, not hear they wanted to make me sterile surgically. I got a second, then third opinion. It didn't strike me as strange at the time, but looking back, it should have been impossible for me to get in to see ONE specialist in a week, but two? I spoke to my kids and husband over the weekend about what the specialists had said. They were supportive and caring, but really it was my decision.

Anyway, I was still clinging to hope. I wanted another baby, I did not want to be spayed. I took two weeks off from work and tried to make a decision. I'd been home four days - it was a Thursday - when I finally made my decision. I had been reading about the surgery and the life changes involved and I just... I got so frustrated and angry. I wanted my baby. I did not want to be cut open and have parts of me removed.

I took a bubble bath and tried to calm down. I read the brochure one more time, then threw it in the trash, still pissed and determined. I was having a baby, I was NOT going to go under the knife. I was fine, I wasn't sick, it was just growing things, not even cancer, just softball sized sacks of water. I'd deal with them.

Decision made, I was at peace. I got out of the bath, dried off, slid into my robe and went to sit on the couch. I was sipping some water when a movement near the bathroom caught my eye. I looked up and saw my older brother Cliff standing there. Please remember I have four brothers, of whom only three are living. My brother Cliff died about three years before this happened.

I was not frightened, upset or in the least bothered. It never occurred to me that Cliff was dead, that he'd died before I bought my home, and that he should not be there. He just looked at me calmly, and then turned and walked down the hall.

I followed of course. He was my brother and I hadn't seen him in so long. He went into my bedroom and I was only a few steps behind, but when I got there he was gone, although his scent lingered in the air. No he didn't stink - everybody has a distinctive scent. I recognized his scent is all.

I didn't see him, but laying on my pillow was the brochure I'd throw away in the bathroom. Remember, I had not been in my bedroom. I slid on my robe and went to the front room. I didn't really need another hint did I?

I picked up the phone and called the surgical center. She answered on the first ring and when I gave her my name and why I was calling she laughed and said, "Wow you have great timing. The lady scheduled for tomorrow just called and cancelled. If you can be here at six in the morning we can fit you right in."

I'm not a fool. I don't believe in that much coincidence, so I took the offered time, called my boss to let her know I'd be out for six week, then called my hubby and told him what was happening. He came home early and we got everything ready.

There were some complications after the surgery and I ended up back in the hospital because of internal bleeding and infection, but I pulled through okay. About three weeks later we got a call from my GYN. The pathologist had contacted him. They wanted me to sign something to release one of the samples - I'd specified all my stuff needed to be disposed of properly. I didn't want little bits of me hanging out somewhere in some freezer.

On examination of my uterus, I had a rare myometrial growth, the very beginnings of leiomyosarcoma. The cells of my myometrium had just started to mutate. Pre-cancerous, and although I was tested every few months for years, nothing like that developed elsewhere. It was very - extremely - rare and they wanted to use it for study to help women with this form of cancer. TODAY Leiomyosarcoma has a 63% survivability rate and endometrial cancer has a 99% survivability rate. Back then it was significantly lower, as to be non-existent.

Had I gone ahead with my plan to try for another child, I likely would not have conceived, and I would have developed what was back then a death sentence.

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of my brother and thank him for helping guide me.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, MaggieMay_Not, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Jubeele (26 stories) (897 posts)
6 years ago (2017-12-04)
<psst> Maggie, do you think you can wrangle a trip to Sydney to visit us? Just tell work you've got to do a 'service check' on my new Dell laptop?

As a side note, I'm not a huge fan of rap either, but one of my favourite Japanese anime series has a rap-style intro that's quite catchy:
Melda (10 stories) (1363 posts)
6 years ago (2017-12-03)
Maggie - Just had a look at your "rap sheet". I'm the curious type, always look at people's profile pages. I thought I'd just let you know - rap isn't music, well obviously 😆 Horrible stuff, I agree!

Regards, Melda
MaggieMay_Not (15 stories) (106 posts)
6 years ago (2017-12-03)
Jubeele I am - sort of. For some odd reason I never seem to be UN-busy. Work work work... It's not even like I have a particularly in demand job. I do warranty repair work on digital hardware (computers, laptops, servers, printers, TV's, scanners and the like). Dell IBM Lexmark Lenovo Sony Sanyo HP - Warranty hardware only though. LOL This was a part time job that somehow evolved into full time with travel to places like salt lake and LA...
Jubeele (26 stories) (897 posts)
6 years ago (2017-11-30)
Hi Maggie, hope you're well rested and ready for the holiday season! 😊
MaggieMay_Not (15 stories) (106 posts)
6 years ago (2017-11-30)
Hello Jubeele, Melda, Notjustme, Gayatrishiva --- I am very sorry I didn't respond to your comments. I was sent to salt lake city for week for work, and then had to go off to LA. Needless to say I was so busy I didn't check in on this. 16 hour days and constant travel does not give much time for other things.

Jubeele - I still ache for the child that wasn't meant to be, but I've moved on. Yes I firmly believe my brother saved me. Thank you for your kind comment.

Melda - I actually DO agree with you. It took me years, but I was able to see that. I tend to be a planner, but I've found that sometimes plans just don't work out. Or they work out in a way that changes the results. Thank you!

Notjustme - I am glad you enjoyed my memory. Yes I trust my brothers, all of them, and a little thing like death will never change that. Thank you so much for your kind comment. I am very sorry to read of your troubles.
Melda (10 stories) (1363 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-18)
Gayatrishiva - I'm really sorry to hear that you have had such a difficult time, baby-wise and health-wise. It doesn't help to ask "why me?" because unfortunately the answer to that will evade you.

I wish you well and am pleased to hear that you are coping.

Regards, Melda
Gayatrishiva (3 stories) (121 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-16)
Hi Mel da I like your prospective of thinking... I will go with it... Likewise I always wanted a kid and was crying my eyes out oh God why only me who couldn't conceive. But when I had tried if and everything on hand but something within me has always said or I felt kid isn't for you dear... I don't know why I had that feeling it was like it wasn't my feeling at all... Because by my whole heart I wanted to be pregyy... But somehow down the lane I learned my ex wasn't really interested in having a baby and may that's why God didn't want me to have one or whatever reasons... Suddenly I found iam divorced and married the love of my life... It was like I never expected to get divorced and getting remarried again. Then it downed on me if I had a kid my would be he'll with the divorce going on...

AGAIN I HAD THE URGE to get pregnant with the love of my life. And there broke out the bad news that iam having 4th stage of chronic kidney disease and just 18 percent of kidney.

Only one of my kidney is working and other kidney is fully shrunken and infected ie ii have phylonephrotic syndrome. My whole world crashing but it downed on me although I had the disease previously (when my brother passed away I was vry ill and my bp was sky rocking and when I went to dr he has in fact has written in my report iam having ckd but no need of medical Internet ion but need to have vegetarian diet and no salt) and believe me iam having the result with me until date.

And I have gone to so many drs but no one mentioned to me about ckd... It was like it was kept away from me. I guess it was because my ex was not a person who could look after me and he will surely dump me if he heard iam ckd patient.

Might be it's God's way of saving me back then. But now my hubby is very supportive and looks aftrnoon me.

So honestly believe everything happens for a reason and God knows better what we want and when we want.

I have adopted a cute pomeranian who also loves me a lot and has helped me recover from my illness and give mental support along with my hubby. So I guess God has done everything good for me... As he has sent a loving soul who could take care of me when iam ill.

My drs told me an year ego I will be on dialysis within 6 months but still here iamjust hanging around withou dialysis and following strict diet, positive thinking, my yoga and mmeditation has helped. I might very well add that this site has also helped me to come above the physical realms and see positivity and believe and see beyond physical al as paranormal exist and so is miracle.

Sorry guys for writing such an long essay and thanks for reading.
Gayatrishiva (3 stories) (121 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-16)
Oh god gracious you made me cry and it reminded me of my brother and how he has showed me that he is safe after his passing away... Pls read my story too dear... Iam sorry you couldn't conceive but iam glad your brother was guiding you and that makes me feel happy that the death isn't really an end... Oh dear you made me cry... Love this story and I totally believe this story 200%. Sending lots of love and light and hug to you and your dear brother
notjustme (19 stories) (852 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-12)
Clap clap* I loved this story. I loved the fact that you were so settled on not having the surgery, but did it without thinking because of the love and trust for your brother. Vice versa for him to you. Glad to know you discovered it early. Sometimes we get what we want but in another form. You wanted a life, you got a new beginning ❤ or that is just how I see it. Sweet story.
Melda (10 stories) (1363 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-11)
MaggieMay_Not - You may not agree with my perspective but the baby you so badly wanted was just not meant to be, as insensitive as that may sound. I'm thinking of your husband's vasectomy and all the issues you had with irregular cycles, cysts, medication, etc as well as the recommended hysterectomy.

I also wanted only two children and I was horrified when I discovered that I was pregnant with a third. I had changed from the pill to a different method but like you, I also used to fall pregnant at the drop of a hat (or whatever). It took a lot of personal soul searching and encouragement from family and friends for me to accept my situation.

Yes I know that sounds selfish and it was. Well needless to say I gave birth to my beautiful daughter and I could never imagine life without her.

The difference between you and I is that she was meant to be. No matter what, that baby had to be born to me. This is my belief, I don't expect you or anybody else to agree with me.

What a blessing it was that your brother ensured that you changed your mind. He knew that baby would never be born. Also, it was definitely not a coincidence that there was a cancellation and you could go in for the op the next day.

This experience of yours has got me thinking of how we tend to plan our lives ahead and how often things simply don't fall into place the way we would like. Life lessons, I think.

Regards, Melda
Jubeele (26 stories) (897 posts)
7 years ago (2017-11-11)
Oh Maggie, you made me cry! I know that baby ache. I've had so many problems conceiving years ago, irregular cycles, poly-cystic ovaries, 30% of both ovaries removed and a surgical procedure on my womb. Then came the IVF attempt - and we lost the baby. It was a painful time.

Your brother was indeed looking out for you. That is such a beautiful, loving experience.

I'm sorry you didn't get to have another baby, but I'm really glad you're here to share this with us. Hugs to you. ❤

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