Last time we talked, I was one week away from my hysterectomy procedure and threatening to cancel! Well folks, I’m reporting from the other side to tell you that my hysterectomy was amazingly successful.
Getting REALLY ready …
So, a couple days before my surgery my sweet friends threw me a Uterus Eviction Party! Y’all, it was the sweetest thing. It also helped me further normalize and be comfortable with my upcoming decision.
We shared stories of our first periods! We discussed what sex could be like without impending pregnancy and what it should feel like with amazing freedom & reconnection to our bodies. We joked about life in general. My friend who is a nurse gave me some great tips about pain management. Also, the homies prayed for me – that was special!
Also, what helped me get REALLY ready was my brother helping me clean up the house. I’m not gonna lie, I was procrastinating like crazy due to my anxiety. My brother came through and got me together! We reorganized my drawers so I’d have easy access to needed clothing and body care supplies. We disinfected all the surfaces just to be sure that I’d have a smooth recovery with no problems. He assured me that my room was healing ready.
Trust me, get someone you love to help you clean up before your hysterectomy. You will be thankful. ❤️
Let’s go to the hospital …
I’m not gonna front … I slept about two hours the night before the surgery. My nerves were shot and I was still finishing some client work for Glance Digital. Around 2am I closed my eyes. By 5:30am we (my brother and I) were on the way to the hospital. It was time.
The staff at Centennial Women’s Hospital was amazing! I was checked in rather quickly, my doctor greeted me to give me the preliminary details, then the nurses got me ready.
It’s been 5 years since my last major surgery, a Fibroid Removal, and some things have changed. First, they give you an amazing cocktail of pills to calm you and preemptively address pain. Listen, within a couple hours I was floating!
They started my surgery at 9am and I was in recovery by 12:30p. I was in recovery for about 4 hours. By 5:30p I was home in bed. What surprised me most – I felt good. I felt much better than I thought I’d feel after having a organ removed.
Healing at home
When I say I felt better than I thought I’d feel, please don’t assume I was painfree. There’s a major reason why my body responded the way it did: I had a laparoscopic hysterectomy surgery. Laparoscopic surgeries are less invasive allowing for less pain and less incidence of infection. I have 4 small incisions in my lower abdomen.
My hysterectomy sisters who’ve had a traditional surgery (where you may be cut you similar to a c-section or vertically like a stomach surgery) report having a lot more pain and longer recovery time. So, if you’re reading this, it is my sincere prayer that you are eligible for a laparoscopic hysterectomy. The healing journey is so much easier.
Back at home my brother was an amazing nurse. He’d wake me up to take my meds: painkillers, stool softeners, gas relief pills, and my multi-Vitamins. My appetite was pretty light for the first week. I was drinking my fave juices (y’all know I’m a green juice addict) and my bro was cooking healthy meals that kept my ‘situation moving’.
Gas management team … lol!
While we are on the topic of food intake, believe me when I say that eating a diet that keeps your plumbing clear is gonna be the best thing for you. I’d advise you to START TWO WEEKS BEFORE your surgery. Get that plumbing moving because you want your first poo to be smooth. 💩
What’s most annoying (and sometime super painful) during the healing process is the GAS. If you get a laparoscopic procedure they fill your abdomen full of gas in order for the surgical tools to remove and repair your organs. So, when you’re healing that gas has to leave your body. Some people report feeling gas pains all the way in their shoulders. For me, I was just traditionally gassy. Laying down helped that gas escape. Healing from this surgery ain’t that cute. Lol!
One last note about pain …
The ABDOMINAL pain after a laparoscopic hysterectomy felt like doing 5000 crunches in one hour. You know that feeling. The ‘inside’ feeling is kinda achy – like, your body knows something is missing and it’s trying to sort some things out. It’s an interesting feeling and (at week 3) I still need painkillers at the beginning of the day.
What helps me when I’m feeling achy is laying flat on my back. Let my body lengthen, gas release, it helps me ground myself during my most painful moments.
Listen, whatever the doctor tells you to do … DO IT. Now your body may not respond respectfully to the narcotic drugs (hydrocodone) but if you can take ibuprofen and/or acetaminophen- take it and take it ON TIME.
So that’s what’s been happening since I had my surgery. Officially I’m home bound until May 1 (it’s April 10 as I write this post). Tomorrow, I gently get back to office work and answering emails. I also start ‘working out’ – walking 15-20 minutes a day to get my stamina back.