Sunday, July 7, 2013

Pre-op: Hopes, Fears, and Lady Junk

Let me start off with a warning; although I will ramble on about family, school, photography, and life in general, that is not the main point of the blog.  I want to be open and honest, sometimes painfully so, about my hysterectomy, menopause and bHRT.   So, if words like vagina, cervix, dryness, ovaries, and sex make you feel utzy…you might want to find something else to read.   If occasional irreverent humor about the above topics bothers you, this might not be the place for you. 

Oh,  and if you are easily annoyed with people who post far too many pictures of pets, flowers, vacations, etc…run away, don’t look back. 

You’ve been warned.

Now, let’s talk about “lady junk.” (I LOVE my friends. Thank you J.C. for the terminology. This will now be a new favorite phrase and each time I use it, I will think of you and giggle!)

My surgery is 10 days away.  Supracervical abdominal hysterectomy (SAH) and oophorectomy via ~8 inch incision.  (SAH meaning I am keeping my cervix. I have no family history of breast or cervical cancer. I WANT to keep my cervix and my doc has absolutely no problem with that)  Really hoping for a horizontal cut, otherwise my bikini wearing days are over.  My GYN surgeon will have a colorectal specialist on call, just in case. Surgery is due to endometriosis. I have severe adhesions that are now causing issues within my bowels. Lots of stuff is glued together. Thankfully, my colonoscopy was clear, so the CR doc feels the likelihood of a bowel resection is minimal.  But he may still be called in to cut any endo spots the GYN feels is too risky to do himself. 

I won’t lie. I am nervous. In fact I am down right scared. This morning has been rough. More than once I have considered calling my GYN and telling him that I have changed my mind. That I am all better.  That I don’t need to have this done.  But I know that once I am healed, I will feel better and have more energy than I have had in quite a while.  

I have had issues with anxiety for MANY years.  So, me being nervous and losing sleep over this is no big surprise.  But in my quest to become an educated patient, I am making myself down right CRAZY.  Trying to wade through the extremes on either side of the hysterectomy and bHRT debate.  Trying to listen to the women in my life who have had it done and feel reassured that MOST of them have said it was the best decision they have ever made for their bodies. Trying to feel reassured that my Doc is one of the best specialists in women’s reproductive issues in the region. 

I DO think those things have helped me. But it is hard to balance that with the fear.  Fear of being cut open. Fear of not being able to produce my own hormones. Fear of problems that MIGHT come from bHRT.  Fear of loss of bone density, energy, and sex drive if I don’t use bHRT.  Fear that sex is not going to be enjoyable ever again just because my “lady junk” has been messed with!!!  I have NEVER had a terribly high drive, but I DO enjoy the hell out of sex when we have it. And I am terrified I will lose that enjoyment.  

On the other hand, I have read so many positive reviews from women who have had bHRT. And no, I am not talking about reviews on websites that endorse bHRT.  I have hope that my energy will increase. That I won’t be as scattered brained as I am now. That my sex drive might be kicked up a notch. (God help the man if THAT happens!)  I am holding onto those hopes pretty tight. 

I want to be well educated about my body and my options, but at this point, I don’t know if I am doing myself any favors.  Maybe I should just focus on meditating, keeping calm and prepping the house for recovery.  

Ah, who the hell am I kidding.  I will continue to obsess, not sure my body even knows how to stay calm,  and house prep…it’ll happen at the last minute, just like everything else.  


  1. Eh, you could still wear a bikini. If anyone is says anything say, "oh. Sword fight. I won." - J.C.

    1. Scars:

      I have had two C-sections. The first one left me wondering how that huge baby was pulled out through that tiny slit. The scare from the second one goes almost all the way across. I asked my doctor about it at my post-op and she looked at it and said, "Well.....the resident did that. I let her do the cut. She asked me, 'Is this okay?' and I said, 'Yes, YES!!!'" To me, it makes an interesting story. People have since asked me why I didn't sue for some kind of malpractice. It actually never crossed my mind....

  2. Could be quite humorous if I were standing next to the hubs with his 12 inch vertical scar showing. After 15 years, it's still quite visible.

  3. Wear the bikini. Scars mean you fought and lived.