Saturday, April 27, 2013

Third post-Myomectomy check-in: out and about!

Hi everyone!

So, I am two weeks and one day out of my surgery and am feeling pretty darn good! I went for my first major outing by myself yesterday, walking to a mall that is about 5-10 minutes from my Sweetheart's place. I had lunch there, shopped around a little and then stopped in at the grocery store to get myself a little something for dinner and bouquet of flowers before coming back home. I felt great upon arriving back home, still full of energy and I was also feeling great this morning, so I decided to hop on the metro with my Sweetheart and a bunch of his family who were going to Sweetheart's parents' place for lunch. There was no room for me in the car at the other end, so I got off the metro at McGill and went shopping Downtown. After getting myself a new spring coat and a christening gift for Sweetheart's soon-to-be Godson (the ceremony is tomorrow afternoon), I walked along Ste-Catherine back to Guy metro and came home. I am very pleased with my progress and I should be back in my own apartment on Tuesday or Wednesday and also back to driving! I may see about taking AnnieG, my beloved VW GTI out for a spin tonight otherwise I'll give it a shot tomorrow.

On the medical front, things are going very well. I removed my steri-strips on Wednesday and the scabs are coming off of my incision very nicely. I now only occasionally feel a slight twinge from my inner stitches and I have not had any Naproxen since Wednesday and am therefore sleeping much better. My swelling is also still coming down and I am almost down to what I was before the operation. I find that my swelling goes down by a good notch the day following a nice, active day. I've even been able to wear my skinny jeans a few times, hurray! I wouldn't be able to do a full day in them though as I do get more swollen as the day goes on, which is perfectly normal. As for my scar, it is very, very thin and very pink. There is also a hard ridge underneath it, which is normal. I am also still quite numb between my belly button and my pubic bone, but even that is getting better.

So, recommendations for this stage of recovery: fight cabin fever!!! Even if you do not feel like going out for a walk, do it! You will feel much better afterwards because if you stay inside too much, you will get very bored, very frustrated and unhappy. I went through this about mid-way through this week and it was not fun. After pushing myself to go out though and seeing how well I felt afterwards, I made a point of going out a bit every day.

Also, if you feel the need to take a nap, do! If it is after 4:00 P.M. though, put an alarm on for a half hour or one hour at the most, otherwise you will have issues getting to sleep later on in the evening. This also happened to me this week. I fell asleep at about 3:30 P.M. on Wednesday and didn't wake up until 5:30 P.M.. I then had some pretty decent issues getting to sleep when we went to bed at 11:30 P.M. Oops :J

Finally, pace yourself. Just because I am feeling pretty amazing two weeks after my surgery doesn't mean you will. I am a fast healer and was in amazing shape going into my operation. I do encourage you to try and do a bit more every day. My big progress today was getting being able to stretch a bit when I woke up this morning and getting onto the metro (outside of rush hour and fairly early for a Saturday to make sure I could have a seat, you do not want to risk getting elbowed or knocked over). Doing something new every day will feel like winning a trophy, you'll see :)

That's it for now, I'll be in for another update next week! Until then, I hope you're enjoying Spring and the weekend!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Second post-myomectomy check-in!

Hi everyone!

So, I had my surgery exactly one week ago today and like clockwork there is a huge difference in my energy level today! I've been up since about 7:45 this morning (Sweetheart had to get up to go to work and I was starving so I got up as well) and have not had to go back to bed for a nap yet. I've laid down to read and watch a movie just so I don't overdo it, but have not felt sleepy at all, which is something because I've ended up having at least one or two naps a day since coming home from the hospital.

I've also started weaning myself off my prescription anti-inflammatory medication, Naproxen. I was able to skip a dose last night and only had half a pill this morning. I'm very happy about this because the medication had been giving my really, really odd dreams that bordered on nightmares, shortness of breath and possibly hot flashes as well, but those may also have been caused by my body working so hard on the healing process and the estrogen that was feeding the fibroid refocusing itself elsewhere. The jury is still out on that one, but I have been having fewer hot flashes since I've been cutting back on the Naproxen.

Also, my clips were removed yesterday and my incision is now covered with steri-strips which I was told I can remove next Thursday.
The incision is apparently healing perfectly, which I was very happy to hear. I'm going to keep treating it with Traumeel cream and will hopefully avoid having too much of a scar, although things are looking very good on that front so far. Also, my swelling is coming down nicely, so I may be able to give you a bit of an 'after fibroid removal' picture next week if everything keeps going well.

On that note, I do believe I will take myself out for a walk since it is nice and warm here today. Not sunny, but definitely warm, a nice, balmy 21 degrees Celsius!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

First post-myomectomy check in!

Hi folks!

So, I came through my surgery with flying colors and have been recovering very, very quickly! The entire surgery lasted under two hours, they took me in at 7:45 A.M. and I was wheeled into recovery at 9:20 A.M. after they removed one single but very large fibroid from the left hand side of my uterine lining.  What happened to the other fibroids that were seen on my last ultrasound, I do not know. They may have disappeared when I stopped using progesterone cream or perhaps they were never there at all. They may have been an illusion created by how misshapen my uterus had become due to the size (think grapefruit on steroids) of the fibroid that has always been there, but the bottom line is that there being only one fibroid in there is a very good sign that my having a fibroid was more than likely a fluke and I will hopefully never have another. Typically fibroids that are caused by a serious hormone imbalance grow in abundance which is what I had been led to believe was my case, but apparently not, or at lease not anymore! Hooray!

No picture with this post because I am still very swollen from the surgery, but I can tell you that my incision is healing very well. The surgical staples are coming out on Thursday and I am moving around more and more easily every day. My Sweetheart and his family (sister and mother) are taking very, very good care of me and the only bothersome things I cannot do for myself right now are drive, put on my socks and dry myself off below my knees. That and I am doing everything I can to not sneeze or laugh. Laughing is quite painful so I dare not imagine what sneezing would be like!

My recommendations so far for any ladies out there who are going to be going through this surgery are to do your core strengthening exercises for a good two months beforehand if you can! I'm pretty sure they're part of the reason I am recovering so quickly and also have so little pain. Also, be warned that you will be very, very gassy for a few days after your surgery and this will not get better until after you have had a few bowel movements. If you want this go quickly for you, leave off the morphine as soon as you are able, drink loads and loads of water to flush it out of you system and WALK, like lots and lots. You will heal more quickly if you do and once the gas starts walking will help it pass. You may think this is TMI, but you will thank me fore telling you about it if you ever need the info. As of Saturday night I have been taking Naproxen for pain and the stuff works great and has no undesirable side-effects as far as I can tell. Take the oral painkillers they give you once you are off the morphine and do not look back unless you make a false move, laugh too much or, God forbid, sneeze.

That's it for now, I'm off to wash so dishes and then hop back into bed with my book. I'll be back with another post as soon as I feel I can offer more useful information and also an inspiring 'after picture'. Let me tell you though, if you are considering a myomectomy because your fibroids are making your life miserable, do not hesitate, just go for it! The relief of the fibroid symptoms after the surgery is instant and amazing, you will absolutely never regret it!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Pre-myomectomy picture

Hi folks,

It's taken me a lot of guts to post this picture, not because I think I look bad, but because I'm afraid of the opposite type of comments, the "Oh my God, this woman is faking it, her problem isn't that bad, look how tiny her midriff is!". Do not let the degree of swelling around my waistline deceive you folks, believe me when I tell you there is a doozy of a fibroid (soft ball to grapefruit sized) in there along with a collection of others, all of which I am having my OB/GYN evict on Friday. The largest fibroid is in the lining of my uterus on the left hand side and, as I have said before, is squishing my bladder and putting pressure on the lower part of my spine, causing pain right before my period. I also have abnormal swelling right before my period (the photo is me at my slimmest a few days after the end of my cycle, taken this evening and also after two months of intense core muscle strengthening in preparation for my surgery). I also have been suffering from gradually increasing menstrual flow for the past year, so really, it's time for these fibroids to go, especially if my Sweetheart and I want to be able to have babies any time in the near (within the next few years) future.

So there you have it, I've decided to share my story on here because really, there are so few ressources out there for women suffering from fibroids. I've looked and looked and aside from ge eric medical texts, I've found very few testimonies from women who have dealt with fibroids and had them removed, especially women my age in Canada who have gone through this recently. It think this is because A: not many women my age have fibroids that need to be removed B: it takes a lot of courage to talk about this type of problem because people often look at you with pity when you do and that feels crappy and C: it can be embarrassing. I realise that I am very fortunate to not be more visibly swollen than I am. God gave me a uterus that is tilted towards the back. If it was tilted forwards I would look like I was almost five months pregnant.

I sincerely hope that women who suffer from fibroids will find my fibroid posts (I will be posting at least one or two after my surgery) and that they will find them helpful and comforting. In the mean time, please send positive thoughts and prayers to my Sweetheart and for the road ahead and also healing thoughts and prayers for me.

Lux aeterna - John Rutter

I had the huge pleasure of singing this in concert with my choir for the second time yesterday. It is my all-time favorite piece to perform and I look forward to the day when we sing it with the solo line and I get to perform that part somewhere other than in my living room!