Sherri’s Hysterectomy Story
Type of Hysterectomy: (TLH) Total Laparoscopic Hysterectomy
Age at Hysterectomy: 37
Making the decision to have a hysterectomy as a 37 year old, single, non-mother, was probably one of the most difficult things I had to do. I suffered for years with irregular menstrual cycles. I knew that I was irregular because it’s not normal to bleed consistently for 45 days, stop for a week’s break, and begin the cycle again.
In 2010, I had a cyst removed from my left ovary. My doctor and I thought that was the culprit causing all the havoc in my body. After that surgery, I didn’t have a cycle for a few months, so I thought I was “fixed.” It felt so nice to not have to worry about pads, or soaking through underwear. But much to my dismay, the bleeding returned. I had to take iron tablets because I become anemic due to so much blood loss. I was sent to see a hematologist to check what was going on with my blood. I have an extremely high white blood count level, which is irregular for “normal” people. I started to believe we were making headway with figuring out this problem I had. I started a low dose of birth control, which helped with breakthrough bleeding. Even though it was a low dosage, it made me gain weight. I’m a petite woman, so being overweight is not an option for me. I discontinued taking the pill because my doctor wanted to see if we could get regulated for 90 days. Once again, I thought we were on the right track to a road of recovery. However, my female body parts were on their own program of how they wanted things to go.
I took a “break” from trying any form of medical help. I didn’t want to be a guinea pig and keep trying this or that to no avail. Out of pure frustration, I said forget it all. Maybe I was meant to live like this. Maybe I should have gotten stock in the pad making industry, because I surely have made huge investments in their products. I am a woman of faith. Many times my prayer was for God to help me through this. Maybe I was the modern day woman with the issue of blood.
After four years of no relief, I went to see my doctor once more. I was at the breaking point. I didn’t want her to offer me any more pills. I didn’t want to her to tell me to change my diet or try to relax. I wanted to be fixed by whatever means it took. Initially, she did not want to do a hysterectomy. She figured I’d meet a wonderful man and want to be married and have all the children he wanted to have. I told her that if that wonderful man came along and we got married, he would be so disappointed when he would only have intimate moments with his wife every 4 months. That is no quality of life for a married person. And what if I waited and we never got pregnant.
We discussed many options. Mirena, ablation, supracervical hysterectomy and total hysterectomy were all talked about. We weighed the pros and cons of each procedure. Our first option was the supracervical hysterectomy. However, when the biopsy came back, I had cancerous cells on my cervix. We decided to go with the total to alleviate the risk of cancer. That was something neither of us wanted to go through. So, we scheduled August 19, 2014 for the date. This left me with two months exactly to think about what was going to happen to me.
I am a researcher, so I use Google to the extreme. I was blessed to find www.hystersisters.com . It contains a wealth of information about procedures, what to expect, recovery, support and things to buy for surgery. I spent several days and hours just reading what others posted and was relieved to find I wasn’t the only one going through this. Finally, I had a place where I could discuss my issues and ask questions. I didn’t feel like the odd woman out anymore. I am thankful for every woman that posted to my inquiries and that supported me with positive words of encouragement and hope.
It’s been almost 90 days since I had a hysterectomy. I felt a difference immediately. I’m grateful to God that I had a smooth recovery. I was in the hospital for 24 hours. I had surgery on Wednesday and by Friday of the same week, I was driving. I took the time to listen to my body. When it said sleep or rest, I did just that. I have a great support of family and friends. I know I could have never gotten through all of this without their love and prayers.
Deciding to have a hysterectomy is not easy. I thought I would feel like less of a woman. As a matter of fact, since having the surgery, I feel more confident as a woman. If you have a doctor who is not listening to you as a patient, get another one. I thank my doctor for listening to me and not the medical books. You have sisters on this site that genuinely care about you. Ask questions, read, pray and be real with yourself about how you want to feel. The choice is yours. I’m still waiting for Mr. Wonderful to come along, and I’m sure he will understand my decision. Would I change my decision? Yes…. I would have done it sooner. Good luck and be encouraged.