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Friday, May 27, 2016

So this is 50 - Week 2

So this week I learned about FMLA and Scandal............

So my recovery is going well. I have followed doctor's orders; rested and walked for exercise maintaining a balance of activity and resting, additionally, my daughter has been educating me on the show Scandal, against my will. I hate to admit it but I have been sucked in .............ughhhhhhh. I am so glad she is finally on the last show of season four. If it is on I find myself sucked into the show even though I try to resist. You know there is a trainwreck coming and you just keep watching unable to stop. The worst is when for a second you actually kinda like Cyrus only to despise him again a few minutes later.

Moving on, this week went really well except for one day, I woke up with a sinus headache that did not want to be tamed. I felt sick that day and spent the day in bed but around 8 pm, until I finally started feeling better and managed to get my daily walk in at least. I do want to confirm that the battle with post surgery constipation is real. I have found Weetabix, Almond Milk and Prunes for breakfast helped greatly.  I also got my pathology reports and I am happy to report everything was benign, although they did find several cysts and fibroids.

On a fun note I made it to the monthly BUNCO night that was held this week. I had a chaperon (who won for most BUNCOs) to ensure I made it home safely.

My other stress point of the week was being told that I had to file for FMLA leave of absence even though I am using sick and vacation leave for my time off and not short term disability. When I was having children 20+ years ago there was no such thing as FMLA. I am happy that there is a program in place to protect jobs however I always thought it was up to the person to request FMLA. I found out that your employer can require you to take FMLA if they believe you have a serious illness - a night in the hospital is considered a serious illness even if it is elective surgery. So even though I am 2 weeks into my recovery and will be returning to work in another 2 weeks. I have to go through the process of getting approval for FMLA leave - which by the time I get it all settled I will be returning to work. I will get the doctor's office to do my clearance to return to work at the same time I submit my original request paperwork that way I can get everything done is one easy visit. I really don't understand the point of this horse and pony show but I will comply with the request - grumbling all the way. (Amusing point - since I did not request the leave at least 30 days prior to my surgery, a planned event, they can make me wait 30 after surgery to start FMLA at which point I would already be back to work and would not need it.)

Also, next week the hubby and I are heading to Florida for the Annual Handcraft Soap and Cosmetic Guild (HSCG) Conference and visit with family near Orlando - Ahh Vacation and Soap - now this I am excited about.

Friday, May 20, 2016

So this is 50 post surgery week 1

Sleep like you have never slept before.... 

So for the last few years I have been a bit of an insomniac averaging about 4 hours of sleep a night. I was a bit amazed that I slept the first few days away (approximately a 3- 4 hours afternoon nap and 6-8 hours at night, this was with use of minimal pain meds). 

I took one of the prescription pain meds wednesday night but after that switched to motrin. I made sure I did the breathing exercise and took a walk everyday (Thursday it was walking around the Sam's Club and Kroger, Friday I did around a mile in my neighborhood, Saturday was yard sales and errands with the hubby and Sunday (Mother's day) my daughter and I went for mani pedi's and strolled around the West Cobb Avenues). I will admit that not being able to do anything around the house makes me a bit bored. I have slept, played various computer games, and read Proust.

Imagine my surprise at seeing the Wienermobile at my local grocery store.  Gosh what happens when I am working during the day.

Almost a year after the garbage truck ran into the house down the street from us it was bulldozed in the middle of the night. We thought it was going to sit empty forever, now we get to wait and see how long till they clean up the debris.

A few pointers:
  • When you have surgery they pump you full of air that needs to then be released from your body. Wednesday evening was a bit painful - between air release and the meds to prevent constipation I spent most of the evening after my nap in the bathroom and my abdomen was still very tender.
  • There is a post surgical rash aka contact allergic dermatitis (CAD) to adhesive glue. This rash can last for a few weeks even after a single episode of contact with the allergen and can spread to areas which had no contact with the glue. This is known as Disseminated CAD. (I have had minimal itching however the rash is spread all over the front side of my body from chest to thighs.)
  • I have four surgical sites in my abdomen with the one over my belly button showing signs of the most trauma aka bruising.
  • I did not see the caution reports about weighing yourself after surgery until after I had done so, and I was a bit shocked to see how much my weight was affected by the IV fluids I was given.  However, the fluids were quickly released and I was back to pre-surgery weight in a few days.
  • I am not allowed to exercise, lift anything over 20 lbs or in anyway strain the core however, based on my reading and understanding of the future physical effects of a complete hysterectomy indicate that exercise is extremely important and especially building the core muscles. I do think the US could take some pointers from other countries that provide physical therapy after childbirth and hysterectomies.  I will be looking into exercises I can do while recovering.
  • My hubby took the week off and even spent the night in the hospital with me. I have not had much hospital experience and while the hospital staff was super, it was really nice having him there during the night. He made sure that I followed the doctor's orders and made sure I did not over exert myself. I am the type who is more likely to hurt myself by over doing after surgery thinking I am fine and that I can do anything. I can not tell you how many times I have been told not to vacuum for at least 6 weeks possibly longer.


Friday, May 13, 2016

So this is 50

I know it has been a while since I posted and you can thank me later for giving you the condensed version.

So here is a bit of the back story since my trip to London 2013. In March of 2014 I took a class in soap making and was hooked on making skin care products. On my 49th birthday I filed for a business license and started SolCasa SkinCare. There was a Grease inspired surprise 50th birthday party and my first cruise a few weeks later in early December and a second weekend cruise in March.

And then there was May 3rd the day of the Hysterectomy. So long story short I had a cryoablation about 7 years ago to try and minimize the impact of the monthly cycle, the ablation completely reversed after about 5 years. I had hopes nature and menopause would kick in however it appeared that that was going to be several years down the road. So after much research and contemplation I consented to a hysterectomy.  The surgery itself was a straightforward event.  I went in early Tuesday morning and was in the operating room by 8 am.  Next thing I knew it was about noon and I was getting ice chips.  Recovery was relatively smooth - I had a bit of a reaction to either pain meds or anesthetic that made keeping even clear liquids down a bit problematic however, once the IV pain meds were stopped and some anti-nausea meds provided I was quickly able to keep fluids down. The next morning the remaining medical implements were removed (leg pressure cuffs, catheter, and IV) and I had already passed all the breathing function tests so once the Doctor and Nurses had visited I was released around 11:30 am with strict instructions not to lift anything and no housework for at least the next few weeks, recovery is expected to take 6 to 8 weeks. So while I go through my month long semi vacation I thought I would share my post surgery experience. (After some online research I found very few current post surgery details for hysterectomy at 50 and what to expect when you can no longer be expecting).