Monthly Archives: July 2011

The Look-See in the Colon

Last December I scheduled a routine screening for a colonscopy. I knew I was supposed to schedule it around the age of 50 but somehow it escaped my other regular check-ups until 4 years later when my doctor realized I hadn’t been screened.

I spent the day before the procedure eating nothing but clear liquids and then the lovely magnesium capsules. I was grateful my GI doctor didn’t prescribe liquid magnesium.

Either way, I think the outcome is the same. It was a challenging day staying near the bathroom!

And, after the early morning nap with the anesthesiologist and a thorough look by the GI doc, I was sent home to eat with a clean bill of health.

How about you? Have you turned 50? Have you scheduled a colonoscopy?


Trip Down Memory Lane

Whenever I have some extra time, I love browsing in the community area called Beyond the Land of Hyster.  This forum is the place where our members return, many years post-op, to share how they are doing. I love browsing through the discussion there as the members are sending us waves and hugs while they have remembered the site fondly as a place they gained support for a challenging time.

Its the perfect place to celebrate a “Hysterversary”!

One member posted:

As I sit here typing, it is hard to imagine that one year ago today, I was frantically cleaning house, getting ready to head to the hospital for my surgery. Amazing how time flies!

Today, I am one year post surgery from my TVH/BSO/Anterior repairs and am doing very well! Everything works normal! My “new” bladder and I have spent the year rediscovering each other and I have a occasional discomfort during intercourse but overall, things are much better!

Another posted:

Five years ago today I had a total hysterectomy, with one ovary, tube removed. I must say I have never been happier with the results. No more huge periods, no more pain, no more anything. I am so happy and I haven’t gone into early menopause or no menopause as of yet so I’m incredibly thankful and also thankful to Hystersisters who helped me get through a difficult time. Whenever someone suggests they may have to have a hysterectomy I automatically tell them about this site. It has been a life saver. Thanks again Hystersisters.

I love hearing from our members!

Changes in Plans

Sometimes, we plan carefully for our hysterectomy. We make our lists. We check them twice. We have expectations that what we plan will turn out just like the roadmap we created. And then something unexpected happens.

How do you react when your outcome is not what you anticipated? How do you react when the minimally invasive surgery turns into an open incision hysterectomy?

Here is one member who shares her story. She planned and scheduled a minimally invasive one incision surgery. And yet, because of what the surgeon encountered during surgery, her surgery was converted to an abdominal surgery.

I appreciate this member sharing her story and her positive attitude. She could have recovered in anger because of the change in plans. But instead, she chose to understand the situation that altered her original plans.

Read her story here: Went in for LESS/SILS – Came Out With TAH.

Regrets? Regrets!

We have a wide range of member’s responses from their hysterectomy. In most cases, the hysterectomy is a choice by the patient, based on their medical history and their quality of life needs. In the case of cancer, the hysterectomy is not a choice but a necessity.

We have many members who report that their surgery was the best thing they ever did for their health. Others live with regret as they swap one set of problems from before their surgery for a whole new set of problems after surgery. This is why always encourages women to explore all other treatment options before scheduling surgery.

Here is one popular discussion in the HysterSisters community forums started by a member who started the discussion when she was a few weeks post-op and her recovery has been a struggle.

Join the discussion: Question to those Veteran Sisters.

Showers Needed For Relief of Heat?

Are you in need of rain like we are in Texas? We wake up to temperatures in the 80’s and by the late afternoon, our heat is usually around 100 degrees. The heat dries out everything. The lawns are wilting from lack of rain. The trees are begging for a drink. My hound dogs stay inside near the air conditioning. We need some relief! I can’t whine too much about it because the winters are really awesome. But in the middle of summer, I’m reminded that this season takes a toll on everything around me.

The season of menopause does that, too. It dries out my skin. It dries out my hair. Some women say that without their hormone replacement treatment they would be all shriveled up.

If you need help with your menopausal symptoms, visit the Menopause forums of HysterSisters for support from your sisters. They will shower you will support. Even in the middle of summer.

Schedule that Mammogram

This morning I headed to the appointment I keep every summer where I intentionally put myself in a position to have my body exposed to a stranger. Yes, I had a mammogram today.

I sat in a waiting room with 3 other women who were there for routine mammograms. One woman, much more fluffy than the rest of us, was full of anxiety. Apparently no matter your size, the mammogram is not a comfortable experience in any way.

I always leave after my mammogram feeling:

  • relieved it is over for another year.
  • bruised around my ribs.
  • grateful there is a method that can detect breast cancer.
  • all of the above.

No matter the momentary discomfort or embarrassment, I’m doubly thankful when the letter comes from the radiologist telling me my mammogram is clear. This is always good news considering my family history of breast cancer and the loss of a few of my friends in the past few years from this terrible disease.

Have you made your mammogram appointment? This is your HysterSisters reminder to take care of yourself. Pick up the phone and make that appointment today. You are welcome.

Visitors in the Hospital

Our members ask all kinds of questions as they prepare for surgery. They help each other with ways to prepare food in the freezer. They offer ideas for preparing the recovery area with fresh sheets and a side table with favorite magazines and books. Basically, the HysterSisters educate themselves with their options and learn how they can take control of what they can for their surgery and their recovery.

Here is a discussion about having visitors in the hospital:

Since I’m just a day away from my visit to the castle. We just got into a discussion about visitors at the hospital. I said, I would be really uncomfortable with anyone there immediately after. If I feel like crying or sleeping, I don’t mind doing it in front of my family but I don’t need an audience. I just don’t think I’ll feel up to it. Does anyone else feel this same way? and for those who went through it when did you really feel up to visitors?

Here is the whole thread: Visitors in the Hospital.

Do you plan on keeping your hospital room free from friends and family? Every one is different. The choice is yours!

The Magic of My Gorgeous Gadget

I joined the revolution. I know. I know. I can hear you. I kind of felt like I could hear my mother saying, “If everyone jumped off a bridge, would you do that, too?”

No. Not if it were a bridge. But an iPad. Yes!

The main thing that I appreciate about my ipad is the brilliance of the screen. I love visiting on my ipad. The pages look great. They open well. I can access my entire account on this gorgeous gadget. I can zoom in. I can zoom out.

And just like Monday’s post, it means that no matter where I am, I can go spend time with the sisters at

Now to book my beach vacation. I figure I can slide the ipad into a gallon ziplock baggie to keep the sand away. Look out! I’m loving my iPad!

Meet the Staff – Pooodle

Across the pond and over the way, is a very special hostess on our team that is known as Pooodle. She loves the HysterSisters she serves in the Introduce Yourself forum where she helps our newest members find they way around the website.

She spends half her year in the UK and the other half in Spain. She is another great example that no matter where you are, you can be online at HysterSisters!

Besides being a hostess in the Introduce Yourself forum, you can find Pooodle in Friends Without Faces, Options and Alternatives and in HysterSisters Around the World. And she is. She is a HysterSister around the world!

You can read more about Pooodle in her bio. If you see her on a thread, tell her thanks for all she does. She may live in the UK but she has a heart the size of Texas!

From the Ends of the Earth

In the early days of the website, our members logged into the website using AOL or on their new Internet Explorer from their homes on a gigantic, heavy, desktop computer. Now, years later, there are a multitude of ways to visit the HysterSisters. Our members use their laptops, ipads, cell phones and even an ipod or itouch to log-in.

Don’t you think it is incredible to imagine that no matter where we are – in our homes or sitting at the edge of the world, we can gain insight and support from one another? And become friends!

We can share stories and worries. We can share celebrations and recommendations for foods with fiber. We can swap hospital stories and compare incisions.

One day I remember being amazed as I watched a particular sweet thread discussion on the forums. I had grown to know these women. I wondered where else on this planet would you likely find a waitress, a pilot, a teacher, a stay at home mom and an attorney in discussions about their health? Where would you likely find occupants of a ranch, a tract home, a travel trailor and a monastery talking about their surgeries?

No where but and in our forums.