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Warning this post may contain some TMI, so proceed at your own risk!
About a year and a half ago, after an epic battle, I lost custody of my uterus. After 6 kids, apparently even the thought of me wanting another baby was enough to send my uterus packing. It had had enough and just wanted out of our relationship. So at the ripe old age of 33 I gave in and got a partial hysterectomy. It wasn’t a decision I came to lightly and I talked to so many friends, family and doctors before agreeing to my uterine divorce.
I absorbed all the information Dr. Google provided so I was completely prepared for this major surgery. I read everything I could get my hands on, so there would be no surprises, unfortunately as clinically prepared as I was for the actual surgery, I missed the whole chapter on how ridiculous recovery would be. Why doesn’t someone talk about the horribly embarrassing, sometimes just wrong, things that your body goes through after the fact. To save other women the pain and humiliation of post uterus ripping out surgery, I will be sharing the things that no one will tell you about your hysterectomy:
1. Take all the drugs they offer and abuse your pain pump! I had all my children completely naturally, no pain meds, no epidural, surely I could handle the pain of being turned inside out and having my insides cut out. Yeah, no, even Supermom can’t handle that kind of pain. Take the drugs, drink the kool-aid, do whatever it takes to stay in a drug induced stupor for the first 12-24 hours after the surgery.
2. You will become a flatulence factory, there is no delicate way to put that, it will be awful and it will hurt so bad for the first few days that you will cry a little each time you even think you have to let one go.
3. Your bladder will expand to like 100 times it’s previous size. With all that room you now have in there, your bladder will feel like it was upgraded to the penthouse and will gladly expand to fill that empty space. This can be a good thing for road trips because you will never have to stop for a bathroom break. However, if you sneeze with a bladder that full, it will be like Niagara Falls between your legs, so proceed with caution when testing out your new bladder capacity.
4. The swelling will last for months and months and months. Swelly Belly (as it’s referred to by my fellow hyster-sisters) is awful, I left the hospital looking 6 months pregnant. My husband had to bring my old maternity pants to the hospital so I could go home because the stretchy yoga pants I bought were too tight. Ugh. It took 8 weeks before I could ditch the maternity pants, but another month before I could even think about wearing jeans again.
5.You will be exhausted for weeks. Not just a little tired….. we are talking fall asleep on the toilet because you can’t walk back to the couch without a nap first, exhausted. This will last for weeks, if not months. It is deceiving because at some point in recovery you feel like you have acquired superpowers and you can do anything, then reality strikes when your husband has to drag you back in the house cause you had to lay down in the driveway after your mission to walk around the block ended in an epic fail.
6. You will become addicted to daytime TV, Stumbleupon and Pinterest. You will not have the attention span to watch a movie because you are so exhausted that you fall asleep halfway through every movie you attempt to watch. You will become best friends with Dr. Oz, Drew Carey and the entire cast of Days of our Lives, all the while pinning and stumbling yourself into a coma.
7. This is the most horrifying one of all!! They rip your lady parts out through your other lady parts!!! I don’t know how in the world I missed the conversation with my doc where he mentioned he would be turning me inside out to confiscate my uterus, but low and behold that is the new “less invasive” way to perform a partial hysterectomy. What idiot thinks this is less invasive? Pretty sure you can’t get more invasive than ripping my uterus out through my baby cannon.
8. You can still have a period!!! What the…..??? I thought I was dying when the red witch came to visit again after a much loved absence. After a panicked call to my doc I was informed that yes, it’s possible to occasionally have a period for years after a hysterectomy. Seriously? You didn’t think to tell me this? I thought I was free forever. Damn being a woman sucks.
I don’t want to scare you out of having a hysterectomy if you are faced with needing one, in all honesty, it was the best thing that I could have done and I feel so much better having had it done (with the exception of the first few months!), hopefully this will help you know what to expect if you are ever in the same boat 🙂