I never thought I would have to face a decision like this at such a young age. “Young” is a fun word to use, really I’m 31. Nevertheless, in regards to something major like a hysterectomy… I am young! Though I have been faced with pain and challenges for awhile now, my heart and mind were at war. It felt as though I couldn’t get them both on the same page for the longest time.
I knew I had to make this decision (even though sometimes at doctor’s appointments I still look for my mom and wish she was there to answer for me!) but I was so nervous that I would make the wrong one and it wouldn’t be the right path for me and my family. Anyone else feel like this? Like all the time?
To understand my situation a little better, here is some background information: For the past 3 years, I have suffered from strong cramps and irregular periods with heavy bleeding, abnormal paps have become a norm for me and high HPV levels have forced me into other minor procedures. The fear of “this is the day I find out I have cervical cancer” every time a routine visit was scheduled became too much to emotionally deal with.
I knew my family was complete after the birth of my second daughter. You see, I am not a woman that enjoys being pregnant. Of course I know how blessed I am to have experienced it, and I’m grateful. I love the tiny baby flutters and feeling them press up against my belly. It was a very personal bond with this tiny human I was growing. Regardless of my heart and the joy of those tiny feet kicking me, pregnancy and my body did not agree.
Both of my girls were extremely trying and risky pregnancies. I was on bed rest for both, had high blood pressure AND with my second daughter, there was a tremendous amount of fluid loss. At that point, my pregnancy became high-risk which caused my doctor to induce a month early. Thankfully, she was born healthy and with strong lungs! It was then that I decided I could not take the pressure anymore, I made the decision to have a tubal ligation after my last baby was born in 2017.
After a lot of discussion and internal battles, I made the decision to go through with the hysterotomy. To be fair, I felt like after failed procedures and abnormal test results, the decision was basically made for me. Either way, here I sit, post-surgery in my hospital socks and loose clothing! I have to say as brutal as the surgery and recovery are, I am glad I had it done.
The decision to do this wasn’t easy, and I strongly advise anyone facing a similar situation to really do your research and look at other options before just resorting to an invasive procedure. Although I knew it was time to do this, even though I am “hysterotomy young”, it really took a toll on me emotionally. Major surgery, especially one that is basically removing an ability to produce a miracle, was heart wrenching.
The surgery itself wasn’t unbearable because you get to take a good long mom nap, but the recovery has been terrible. My youngest daughter does not understand that I can’t pick her up and snuggle. Her face when I have to tell her no makes me feel all the regret that exists…even though it is just temporary and my health has already started showing improvement. Thankfully, having a helper around from time to time has made a difference.
Some days it feels like moms can’t win. If you are looking at this surgery at a young age or if you are young at heart, I will share with you what I learned:
- LISTEN to your doctor when they say no lifting, squatting, bending, stooping
- LISTEN to your doctor when they say you have to get over yourself and ask for help
- TAKE the recovery time. Take it. All 6 weeks. Your body needs it.
- PRIOR to surgery, find a way to explain what is about to happen to your kids so they don’t face “rejection”
- MEDICATION: Take stool softeners… just do it. You’ll thank me later.
- GOOD days will come, don’t abuse them! Still take it easy and rest the whole recovery period.
Do you have any suggestions for recovery? Share with us!