As many of you know, I had a full hysterectomy. With that surgery it sent my body into menopause. For the most part it has been bearable. It has been 4 months since the surgery and I feel like I am just getting my body back.
So let me take some time to answer some questions that some readers have asked me regarding menopause:
- How long did the pain take to manage-I would say surgery wise that took about 3 weeks to heal. This is the initial pain that anyone who has had any uterus surgery goes through. It took about an additional 5 weeks to be able to move about without the pain being agitated during the healing process.
- Hot Flashes, are they controlled-I have to say I think not. I even with the hormone therapy replacement the flashes occur several times a week. It is annoying since before surgery I was a really cold person. The flashes can be overwhelming. I find myself stripping clothes off as soon as I get home. When I am at work, I immediately need my fan or I am in the bathroom with cold water compresses. However I will take it over bleeding every month.
- Sex after the fact was extremely hard in the beginning. I waited a little longer than I was cleared. It was painful and different. I think now I am doing a lot better and feel like my drive hasn’t changed from before surgery, but to say it was just so freely a great experience after surgery would be lie. Some women experience pan, dryness, and lose their desire to even have sex altogether. Every woman is different. Do not compare yourself to how you are reacting to another woman.
- Swelly belly-this is when no matter what you do, your body has told you how much you are doing is too much. You still at times look like a woman who has had a fresh baby. It’s annoying to say the least. I have come to terms that this is apart of the process. On days where my belly is normal, I celebrate with a great outfit.
- Mood Swings-they do exist but in my case I feel like its less than when I had a bunch of unruly hormones guiding me. I think the combination of self-care and the even dose of hormones through the hormone replacement therapy patch which gives me a low dose over time has helped. I have been better off emotionally.
Do I regret the surgery?
Absolutely not. I am 100% on board with my decision. For one physically I feel so much better. I do not have to be on guard about if a period is going to come or not. I do not have to carry unnecessary clothes in case of an accident. The lack of bleeding every month has decreased my previous diagnosis of anemia. I will get my final results by end of the month, but the test I had a few months ago was already looking great. I had already had my tubes tied before surgery so having more kids wasn’t in the cards. My husband supported that decision and to be honest it was the most selfish giving decision I could give myself. Shout out to the women who have had or will have the surgery or go through menopause naturally and unfortunately can’t or won’t experience motherhood. I do not take that gift of motherhood lightly. I do however love the fact that my sister in love is about to give me my baby fix this upcoming Spring.
I did what was best for my body. I do not regret it for a second even with the worst flash, or tiredness or even the feeling of being overwhelmed comes over me and sometimes at the same time, I find myself taking a deep breath and thanking God that I am on the path of healing.
To other menopausal women both young and old who may be reading this thinking how much of a negative experience you may be going through, or think I may be going through, remember that every woman experiences this change in different ways. I could have healed faster than another, doesn’t make me normal and you weird. What works for me may not work for you. I would say that if you are going through menopause I would applaud you to find out what self-care looks like for you both before, during and especially afterwards. Self care will refocus your thoughts as your body changes. It’s like going through the awkward teenage phase all over again. For some the changes in body odor, lost of hair or increase of hair, change in libido, lack of a period, or feeling like your body is experiencing a death from lack of having children even if children was never on your radar are all real experiences. How you navigate through will depend on you. Do not allow anyone to push what you should do. Always trust yourself and talk to your doctors.
One last thing is that going through menopause has made me realize that I can’t take my body for granted. This is why I try to be mindful of if I am doing the things that I need to keep my body at the best shape of my life.
Menopause is a phase of life that women go through regardless if it’s naturally or surgically induced know my fellow women I am with you and I understand.