For the past 8+ days I have been recovering from a laparoscopy and I’m still not fit for work yet. Basically, it’s a surgical procedure that allows the surgeon to view your abdomen, womb, cervix, ovaries etc without making large incisions. If you read my previous blog post about Endometriosis you will already have a rough idea about whats been going on. If not, I had the procedure to basically check that my cervix and ovaries where working properly. The symptoms I have point in the direction of Endometriosis, but the surgery found a 4cm cyst on my right ovary. Some people really cringe out when you talk about periods and everything related but I never understand why. If we didn’t have them then we wouldn’t be able to provide you guys with cute babies. So, deal with it. Period (such a comedian!).
Unfortunately, my cyst hasn’t been removed yet and I need to go back to my consultant (which means I probably need to do all this again!). Since having 2 holes in my stomach I have realised how naive I was going into this and decided to pass on some lessons I learned (hopefully you won’t need it!).
- It could be worse
Don’t be fooled. This is actually pretty heavy going and it’s not something you should take lightly. Remember, your body has been through a trauma and in one of the worst places; your core. You will be surprised at how much you need your core for. BUT, it’s not the end of the world and you must be grateful that you’re not getting treated for anything worse. It’s ok to moan and feel sorry for yourself, but at the end of the day there are people out there going through life threatening surgery.
- Don’t believe everything you read online (except this lol!)
Before my surgery I spent hours and hours googling people’s experiences after their lap. It scared the living daylights out of me! It was all about how violently sick they were afterwards, how much they bled, how much they couldn’t do. I went into full on panic mode. BUT, what I forgot was that everyone responds differently. Majority of what I read didn’t even happen to me. Go into it with an open mind. Before they took me to surgery I told the surgeon about what I read and how anxious I was about specific things. For Example, how sick I was going to be after I came round from the GA. Honestly, there’s things they can do to stop you reacting in certain ways. To be honest, I was so doped up I felt great when I woke up. It was like I had the best sleep ever.
- Put Yourself First
Do not rush back to normality for anyones sake. If you need to take time out for a few days, a week or even more. Do it. No one will thank you for rushing back onto your feet when you’re not ready. You can risk setting your recovery back weeks if you burst open your wounds or fall and hurt yourself. Again, everyone is different. After my lap, I couldn’t get out of bed, sit up or down, go to the toilet or get washed on my own for about 5 days. You need to accept it and make sure you are a priority. Not work or anything else. You’re going to be in for a rough few weeks, so brace yourself and download a lot of films or box sets.
- Accept the fear
The biggest fear I had going into this operation was having to have a General Anaesthetic. I’ve never been put to sleep before and thought of not being in control of your body was frightening. BUT, you can’t control the situation. You need to just deal with it in that moment, there’s no other option. When you deal with it head on it’s not actually as bad. You can’t run away or dodge it. You’re in safe hands.
- Don’t be afraid to fart
Weird, I know. But when they open up your stomach they fill it with Carbon Dioxide so that the skin stretches away from your internal organs. It gives them a bigger scope to see and manoeuvre their instruments. When they are finished and close up your stomach, they let out as much air as they can, but they can’t get every little bit out. Ultimately, it ends up trapped in your body and when you stand up its very common to feel intense pressure in either your shoulders, chest or ribs. I suffered with an extremely sore shoulder for about 3 days after. BUT, you guessed it, the only way to get it out is by burping or farting! Extremely, un-lady like I know. But, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.
I hope you never need this advice, but incase you do it’s here for you. I can’t wait to get back to normal and just do what makes me happy. Until, the next blog post…