Summary: If something doesn't seem right and it's impacting your daily activities, it's probably time to get checked.
This is part one of my umbilical hernia repair surgery.
I figure there are two ways a person figures out they have an umbilical hernia. Way number one is by noticing a protrusion. The other way is by the burning pain the hernia caused.
I figured mine out both ways. Eight years ago after losing my baby weight from my 8 lb 11 oz daughter, I noticed the bulge that made me look like I had an outie rather than an innie. I quickly figured out the bulge could be pushed back in, and that's how I handled it for eight years.
I handled a major medical issue by pushing it back in. In hindsight, that was such a foolish thing to do.
The bulge never went away, even after I joined crossfit and got pretty fit. Despite how many methods I found and tried on Pinterest detailing how to naturally cure my umbilical hernia, it remained. There was a joke in my crossfit class when I would scale some of the exercises that would make my bulge come out more (plank, ab wheel) that I would only fully do that exercise if the coach would be willing to "push my belly button back in."
One day, I had what I thought was a scratch on my belly button. There was no scratch, but it burned as if there was one. The burn got a little worse throughout the day. I would say it was a three or four on the pain scale. And my go-to pushing it back in wasn't working. It now seemed stuck. I knew that was enough that I needed to visit my doctor.
Many doubts ran through my mind about whether or not I was being a baby about the hernia, but I figured that a visit with my pcp couldn't hurt. I was wrong. It did. She pushed the hernia back in and that stung a lot. But she also immediately left the exam room to get the surgeon and told him I needed surgery asap.
I was moved down the hall to his exam room and he completely agreed that I needed surgery quickly. He also made me feel better about such a small thing hurting by telling me that often, the small ones hurt the most because of the amount of pressure being pushed onto them. The surgery was scheduled for the next day. I went home and did what anyone would do the day before a surgery – cleaned my entire house.
For my post on Surgery Day