Hysterectomy: recovery weeks 2 – 6

Note: This is part of a series of posts. If you haven’t read the previous posts in the series (linked below), I encourage you to pop over and read them first.
Hysterectomy: day 1
Hysterectomy: night 1
Hysterectomy: recovery week 1

*          *          *

By week 2, I was sick of drowning in my own stomach acid. In desperation, I called my local chemist and asked to speak to the pharmacist in charge. I didn’t hold out much hope – if the hospital in the city couldn’t help me, what were the chances of finding help in my tiny country town?

Well, it turns out, when someone actually wants to help you, the chances of getting help are much higher!

The pharmacist was absolutely lovely. He listened patiently, and then worked with me to find something that wouldn’t a) interact with the other medications I had to take or b) mess my stomach up even further. I immediately sent Mr Happy down to the chemist, and he returned with a purple packet of hope. They were 24hr tablets – designed to be taken once daily. I couldn’t open the box fast enough. 

It didn’t make any difference that day. But when I woke up the next day, the acid reflux had decreased from “Tsunami” to “Grandpa-indigestion” level. I didn’t even have to take another tablet: the acid kept lessening each day from then on. I was gradually able to increase my meals from two spoons of cereal to three spoons… and then a handful.. and then a normal bowlful!

I was only on the phone with the pharmacist for five minutes, but his help made a huge difference.

Week 2

😀     No longer drowning in my own stomach acid
😀     Can increase the amount of cereal I can eat

:/    Most of the cramping pain is gone, yet my abdomen is getting more sore each day, instead of less. What sorcery is this?! (Note: many experienced women assured me that this was normal for the first few weeks. Unfortunately, normal ≠ pleasant).

😥     Excruciating right hip pain
(At first I thought the hip pain was just because of my hypermobile ligaments. I assumed that they were cranky after being stretched for surgery, and expected them to gradually get better. But when I started waking in the middle of the night in tears from the pain,  I contacted my surgeon. He was concerned, and booked me in for an appointment. But after examining me, he was confident that there wasn’t anything sinister going on. He explained how they cut several ligaments to remove the uterus, then shorten those ligaments before reattaching them to the pelvic floor for support. Sometimes that shortening causes some tightness / pulling for a while, but it usually resolves itself.)

🙂     Nothing sinister causing the hip pain
🙂     Stitches healing well
🙂     No infection

Week 3

😀     Can eat normal amounts of cereal without nausea
😀     Less crying: feeling a lot more like “me”.

🙂     Hip pain has eased a bit
🙂     Abdomen swelling has gone down a little

😦     Can’t be up for long without internal stitches pulling
😦     Still absolutely exhausted. Sleeping a lot.

😥     Everything is spinning!
😥     Night sweats threaten to flood my house: I have to get up two or three times a night to change out of my dripping wet clothes. (In winter = FREEZING!)

o_O     So much brain frog…uh, I mean brain bog…no wait, brain slog… (brain fog)

Week 4

Saw a movie at the cinema with Mr Happy.
He chuckled most of the drive home, because I kept sighing and saying, “I REALLY enjoyed that”, every five minutes. But I really did!

😀     Hip pain is mostly gone!
😀     No crying!
😀    The world is no longer spinning!
(Well, I mean, the earth was still spinning, obviously. But no longer was everything in my line of vision twirling around).

🙂     Able to do some laptop work


❓     Seriously: where is my brain?

😳  Tasers! They’ve implanted tasers in my abdomen: it’s the only explanation for the painful electrical zaps I’ve been getting. (I guess it could be the nerves re-connecting. But I’m sticking with the taser theory). 

Week 5

😀     I can wear pants in my normal size again!
(Abdomen swelling has gone down significantly)

😡     Seriously. The tasers suck.

❓     I’m convinced they removed my brain as well as my uterus. It’s the only explanation. Why else would I, a 26 year old woman, close the lid of the toilet before sitting down to wee?

You know it’s bad when even small wildlife are embarrassed for you…

Week 6

😀     The taser-like shocks have stopped (hallelujah!)
😀     My abdomen no longer hurts, just feels a bit tight
😀     I ate some plain roast lamb: it didn’t make me sick!
(Plain lamb is one of the things I could have before the operation, but wasn’t able to tolerate afterwards)

😎     I can do more things e.g. (move a chair with no pain)

🙂     Tummy only swells a little at the end of the day

So, at almost six weeks post-hysterectomy surgery, I’m doing pretty well, considering how falling-apart-in-general my body is! 

The only downer is that I’m still super tired and brain bogged…brain clog…


xx S.

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