January 18, 2013 § 2 Comments
A hysterectomy for most women is a personal & overwhelming life style change. More often than not women find it very embarrassing. Especially young women. Luckily I have no shame so I am going to answer questions that maybe you are too uncomfortable to ask.
1) Will I gain weight?
Yes. I wish this wasn’t true but it is. Ignore all that business about “well if you just eat right” I ate all organic vegetarian food and I still gained 20 pounds. It’s normal, it sucks but it’s normal. The up side: This should NOT be reason to rule this out. It eventually evens out & you will go back to your normal self. Plus in the mean time enjoy it ( I know am I crazy) Take advantage of the fact no one will say anything because you’ve had surgery for god’s sake and really your the only one who will notice-Promise.
2) Will I loose bladder control?
Yes and No. Some women (usually older) will have problems with bladder control, but with younger women you should not have a problem. But I will fill you in on a little known secret, (doctors didn’t not warn me of this possibility) So we are friends so I have no problem telling you my pee story. Two days after my surgery I stood up and just peed, oh yeah no warning just pee. Luckily no one was home (except the cat who found it hilarious) and luckily it only happened once. The up side: You just got to hear a story about me peeing myself what more of an up side do you need?
3) Will I loose interest in sex?
No. In fact you might be a bit more frisky. Without the pain that caused you to get a hysterectomy and without the worry about getting knocked up you will be back to your vixen self in no time. The up side: This is more for your life partner but with this added bonus he won’t care so much when you are a emotional wreck.
4) How bad are hot flashes?
Fuckin horrible. Don’t let any quack tell you that it’s just a matter of being warm. It feels like you are in a sauna. You will feel like you have a fever and are on fire from the inside. And don’t let the name fool you it’s never a flash. It can last for a minute or and half an hour. Be aware of the night sweats as well they are the worst. The up side: I haven’t had to buy a winter coat for two years and our heat bills in the winter have been drastically lowered.
5) Do I still need to see my gynecologist?
Yes. Don’t be ashamed of this question my mom (who is a nurse asked me this) You still have lady parts so yes you still have to see your gynecologist. The up side: Have fun with it. Tell them you think your pregnant. Trust me it’s hilarious.
6) How bad are the mood swings?
Perhaps I should let Ben to answer this question because he has been on the receiving end of my ,um shall we say “outbursts”. They are pretty bad I remember crying because I only had one Oreo cookie left (in retrospect this may been my reaction before menopause). The worst was Ben came home and asked me how my day was and I almost killed him with a shoe. Understand that this is normal and they are uncontrollable(despite what any one else tells you) The up side: You now have a perfect excuse to get out of any situation. Start crying people will just walk away.
So do you have a question? Seriously nothing is off limits. I would love to answer it for you. Leave your questions in the comments below.
March 17, 2012 § Leave a comment
A day before my consultation with the surgical oncologist I got a call from one of the people in her office just to make sure I was prepared and if I had any questions on what to bring. Should be a fairly uneventful conversation, right? So I have no idea when the conversation took a weird unexpected turn:
“Hello Michelle I am calling on behalf of Dr. What’s Her Name to just briefly go over what to expect from your appointment tomorrow.” Great, thank you. “So you should arrive 15 minutes early and make sure you bring the forms we sent you. You have filled out the forms we sent you right?” Of course, I filled them out the day I got them (shit I’ve got to fill out those forms, double shit I have to find where I put those forms) “Wonderful. You would be surprised by how many people leave them to the last minute” Really, you don’t say (Seriously where the hell did I put those damn forms) “You will be meeting with the nurse to go over your medical history and then you will have an exam with the doctor, any questions so far?” (Um yeah what happens if you loose your forms.) Um, No questions. ” As for clothing it’s really important that you wear something that you can easily get over your head. The easier the garment can me removed the better” So what I usually wear on dates, Got it. “We prefer a bra that can you can snap on & off fairly quickly” (Ok now you sound like my boyfriend.) “Unlike the mammography office we would prefer you wear deodorant and please make sure all hair in and around the area is shaved” (Ok seriously I don’t take this long on anniversaries to get ready. That is a lot to ask for someone I haven’t even met yet. I usually like to be wooed a little. You have to earn shaved armpits and an easy access bra.) “Depending on where the mass is the doctor might require you contort your upper body so prepared to be a little sore the next day. And I think that’s it, Any questions?” (Did I accidentally make my appointment with a brothel?)
January 10, 2011 § 3 Comments
Right now I’m a teacher by day and a designer/illustrator by night . Now before you say “oh how nice what a rewarding field” STOP! I teach at an institution which maybe run by the winged monkeys in The Wizard of Oz. But I love my other job and was back doing my art two days after surgery(totally against doctor’s orders) but the time has finally come where I need to go back to my day job. Now to prepare you for what you will encounter I have assembled this helpful guide of the types of people you will encounter on your way:
- Nosey Nellie: This person does not actually care how you are feeling but just wants to know everything about it so they can be the first to tell anyone who asks.
- The One Upper: No matter what has happened to you medically this person can out do it usually starts with “well you think what you went through was bad I had to be quarantined for months with a flesh-eating bacteria, the doctors say I’m lucky to be alive”
- Grim Reaper: No matter what you have this person will tell you the most horrible story of a person they know who had the same thing & it went horribly wrong. “My sister had a hysterectomy and she was feeling fine and then she went back to work and her fingers fell off, seriously!”
- Office Idiot: Never has any idea whats going on ever. “You were gone?”
- The Coal Miner: Have never missed a day of work in their life. “Hey glad to see some people can take time off. I broke all the bones in my leg, literally back to work the next day”
- Self Esteem Killer: “You look tired”
- Management: “So you’re feeling better, great, then you can finish all this work that no one did while you were away” while handing you a stack of dusty papers
- Failed Health Class: “Hysterectomy? Is that like a hernia?”
- Asshole: “I wish I could have 6 weeks vacation, where I get to lay around and do nothing.”
- Captain Obvious: “So you had a hysterectomy, huh?”
- Self-Centered: Just asks how you are doing so you’ll have to ask how they have been. They will literally interrupt you so they can they you all about their problems. “But I’m starting to feel ………. “You’ll never belive what happened to me while you were gone”
- Health Nut: Knows better than all the doctors of the world. “You know why this happened to you it’s all the coffee you drink, you need to do a 40 day cleanse like I’m doing right now, nothing but lemon juice and cayenne pepper”
If you are lucky enough to work in an environment where they sent you a get well card and a basket full of goodies and through your recovery you heard “The most important thing is that you get better” and “Take as much time as you need”, then I HATE YOU! Now back to work I go (I’m writing this from an undisclosed office location)