I don’t really remember when it all began, but I knew back in my mid twenties my periods were painful from time to time. I thought it was the normal cramps, and it could have been, but sometimes the pain would keep me out of work and I couldn’t ever get comfortable.
Fast forward at least 10 years to 2016and my periods were heavy, sometimes to the point where I’m doubling up on pads. I had broken my arm that year and ended up getting blood clots because of the major break. So I had to see a hematologist. Well, when I saw her for the clots, I found out I was anemic. So she put me on iron pills. I thought the anemia was just hereditary.
In 2017 I saw my obgyn and she put me on the mini pill for birth control. It lessened the bleeding a bit but, then I’d get my period about twice a month! And it didn’t really help with anything else. Sometimes while on the pill, my periods were heavy but not as heavy as before I was on the pill. But, they were still heavy. I also found out the iron pills weren’t working and I had to start getting iron infusions every 3-4 months.
It was also in 2017 also that my period started controlling my life. A week before my period and while I had my period the pain would be so bad I couldn’t get any relief a lot of the time. No position was comfortable and I would have to miss family functions and get togethers with my friends and sometimes even work due to the pain from my period and with how much I would bleed sometimes. I thought this was something I was going to have to live with the rest of my life.
In the fall of 2018 I saw my obgyn and I had gained weight, especially in my abdominal area. I looked pregnant and my abdominal area was hard! I had an ultrasound done and found out I had 3 fibroids, one of which was very big. I didn’t know what fibroids were, so she explained to me what they were. We also talked about my different options for the fibroids and, since I was undecided about having kids, a hysterectomy sounded like the best thing for me. But like I said, it was just an option then.
Months went by and it’s May 3rd 2019. I laid down to go to bed and put my hands on my belly and felt this huge hard mass to the right of my belly button. It didn’t hurt, it just felt weird and it was something I hadn’t ever felt before. I spent the majority of the night trying to google what it could be. I was so worried as to what it was, that I barely slept. The next day, that evening i gave in and went to urgent care. I ended up having a fever of 100.3 and with the hard lump, urgent care sent me to emergency. I was there for about 5 hours and even though nothing big happened while I was there, I did find out what that hard lump was. It was one of my fibroids. My biggest fibroid. It measured at least 11cm! The dr at the hospital told me I have the body of a skinny person except for my abdominal area. He also told me I looked like I was at least 5 months pregnant. I ended up having to go back to my obgyn and that’s when we decided and I was basically told, that I had to have a hysterectomy. That that was the best option for me, especially since I didn’t really want kids. So, we set my surgery date for June 27th 2019.
I worked at my job on restriction all the way up to my surgery date. I was very sad to be leaving my job to have this surgery and I was also very scared, as the only other time I ever had surgery was when I was 6 years old and I had my tonsils out.
My parents, my boyfriend and my boyfriends mom were all there the morning of my surgery. They called me back for pre-anesthesia and I started crying when I got back there. They gave me something in my IV and they started taking me to the operating room and then I was out and I woke up in the hallway just outside of my hospital room with everyone around me. They had me use a walker to get from the bed they brought me up on, to my hospital room bed. I was told by my nurse that they had found more than 3 fibroids inside of me and at one point, they weren’t sure if they would have to do a vertical cut after already doing the horizontal cut because, of the size of my biggest fibroid. Idk if it had grown any more than 11cm but, I’m glad they did manage to get everything out thru the bikini cut. They also found endometriosis that they removed as well. I also got a pic of my biggest fibroid too! Nurses kept coming in and out of my room the rest of that day and I was so out of it,
I don’t remember much. I do remember though, that at one point that day, one of my nurses asked me if I wanted to get up and try walking and I said yes and we walked the entire hallway.
Every day in the hospital I would walk and I’d walk a little farther each time. I was given an abdominal binder to use to help with posture, pain and kinda holding things in place. My nurses told me I was doing good and my incision looked good and I was eating fine and passing gas just fine too. The morning I got discharged I pooped and I was so excited -haha I also found out that they hadn’t even given me any oxycodone since the day after my surgery, and there I was, 3 days after surgery in just little pain and soreness! I couldn’t believe it!
I am now home from the hospital and am 6 days post op from having my total abdominal hysterectomy, and leaving my ovaries. I’m sore and in some pain but, I just take Tylenol when needed and I push thru the rest. I do my walking and take blood thinners to prevent blood clots right now and I listen to my body and rest when I need to. My goal is to get back to work in 4 weeks even with restrictions. I have my post op appointment with my obgyn in less than 2 weeks and I should be cleared to drive then. I will also probably have to have atleast one more iron infusion due to my low iron from surgery but, hopefully after that, with the fibroids gone and no more periods, I hope to no longer be anemic.
At almost 37 years old, I don’t regret having this surgery and i know as each day passes I’ll feel better and better and in the long run, i know it will be one of my best decisions. I’m very happy that I will finally have my life back and that it won’t be controlled by these fibroids anymore!
**Update: I am now 6 weeks post op and my incision is healing beautifully! I haven’t had my 6 week post op check yet but, at my 4 week post op check my obgyn said my stitches are still healing and things look good! I feel so much better, so much lighter, so much healthier, I am moving around a lot better than before my surgery and am more active! And I’ve lost more weight! Like I said before, I don’t regret this decision at all, it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made for myself!