15 Hot Topics for Hysterectomy Recovery – Part 3
No one knows better than a HysterSister the ups and downs, ins and outs of hysterectomy recovery. What’s normal? What’s allowed? When will I feel better? What questions should I ask?
All these questions and more are answered in the HysterSisters Hysterectomy Recovery Forum, but here is a collection of helpful, non-medical advice for 15 of the most common concerns during hysterectomy recovery.
Is it Hormones, or Just Common Sense?
- If you have a laptop computer and start having hot flashes while you’re using it, they just might be from the heat of the laptop and not from your ovaries being in shock!
- In a brain fog moment, before looking all over the house for your sunglasses, check the top of your head!
- If you fly to another country, don’t let the customs officials confiscate your HRT.
- When traveling, pack a carry-on bag that weighs less than 10 pounds; the only things you really need to have in that bag are an inflatable donut pillow and an extra Vivelle Dot.
- Give any HRT change more than just a week before you give up on it.
- When you can’t sleep at 5 a.m., don’t drive the two miles to work (when no one is likely to be around). You’ll end up spending the rest of the day in bed with shooting pain.
- It is hard to go to sleep after you’ve been resting all day. No caffeine after 1:00 p.m. unless you really like watching Nick at Nite.
- It is possible to exist on 2 hours of sleep a day for a month. Not recommended, but possible.
- Talk to the neighbors that allow their annoying dog to bark at all hours of the day before you go to the hospital. You need to rest when your body lets you during recovery, not when the dog decides to take a nap.
- If you can’t sleep, go outside. The stars are at their brightest at 4 a.m. on a clear night.
Back So Soon?
- If you go back to work too early, it’s very hard to convince your boss and coworkers that you came back too early and need to go home. It’s better to take the full time and recover right the first time, then to have to try to repair the damage that overdoing it can cause.
- If you go into work to just pick up your check or get your medical leave forms signed, everyone will think you are back to work and want something from you.
- Believe everyone on HysterSisters when they tell you that it’s a good 6–8 weeks for recovery. Don’t allow yourself to believe that you can go shopping at the mall at 2 weeks or rollerblading at 6 weeks. Baby yourself as much as you can the first 2 months.
- Don’t act too good too soon. Even if you feel good try to look lousy and weak. When you act better, you automatically lose everyone’s help and sympathy. Make it last because even though you feel better, you still need the help. Don’t find this out the hard way.
- A corollary to the above: stay in your jammies or sweats, make-up free as long as you can.
- Ten days post-op really is too soon to drive a carful of kids to the midstate fair just because you already paid for the tickets and Alicia Keys is performing. Twelve year olds have an amazing way of convincing you just how tough you can be and how cool you are for letting them stay out until midnight.
HysterSisters and Other Forms of Support
- Use HysterSisters to ask any question or use the search function to look up answers. You will gain knowledge at HysterSisters that will empower you.
- Talk to others who’ve gone through the same things you’re experiencing. Not only is it a comfort to know that you’re not alone, but you can also learn from their mistakes!
- Research, research, research. There is a wealth of information out there, but make sure it is reliable.
- Don’t rush into anything, but don’t procrastinate either. If you have fibroids, they will continue to grow while you indulge in doubts about surgery. Postponing can turn a laparoscopic surgery into a full, abdominal approach.
- If you can wait for the surgery, have it in the fall so you don’t have to watch reruns on TV.
- Why men fear women: “You gotta be afraid of someone who can bleed for a whole week and still not die.”
Nurturing the Spirit
- One of the most important things to learn is that it’s not all so bad.
- Take advantage of some wonderful quiet moments to just sit and do nothing at all.
- Also take some wonderful moments in quiet time with God.
- Notice how amazing the human body is and what it is capable of.
- Start a daily gratitude journal. It can truly be soul-saving .
- This surgery was never going to make you suddenly 20 pounds lighter and 20 years younger. It may, however, make you feel better about yourself than if those things had actually happened.
- A major life-changing event, like this surgery, brings with it a number of lessons, some small and some large. We share these with you in the hopes that you have a smooth recovery.
For more tips like these from fellow hysterectomy patients, be sure to visit the Post-Op forums.
This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support. Reprinted with permission: 15 Hot Topics for Hysterectomy Recovery – Part 3
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