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Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

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  #1  
Unread 04-03-2021, 06:46 PM
Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

Hi all!

So I have surgery this week, and to say that I’m feeling anxious is an huge understatement.I had a partial hysterectomy in 2014 and recovered from that with no issues. I was married at the time and lived with a house full of people. This time around, i have to have both ovaries removed and I have a few more health issues and now live alone. Since I’m alone, my doctor said I will spend the 1st night at the hospital. Once I’m discharged, I have someone to give me a ride home, but that’s it. I’ve read tips on things to prepare for while recovering home alone. I’ve also gotten tips from family members who live in different states. Besides the recovering alone part, I’m also nervous about being thrown straight into menopause. Because of my weight (250), my doctor said she doesn’t recommend ERT. So I’m nervous about that too. I was juggling to make ends meet before surgery. Now to be on short term disability and only receive a percentage of my pay, I’m worried about that too. I feel like my mind is going in a thousand different directions and sometimes (like now) I can’t stop the tears from falling.... and I still have my ovaries... so is this type of emotional roller coaster going to get worse once they’ve been removed??? LBVS

I may have just needed to vent some and thought maybe somebody here could really understand what I’m going through.
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  #2  
Unread 04-05-2021, 03:07 PM
Re: Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

I'm sorry you're having to undergo surgery again, and dealing with the added anxiety of living alone this time AND the financial bind. Deep breaths. I know it's hard to not let your mind go to worst case scenarios on everything, and part of that might be pre-op anxiety (we've all been there), but please try to take one day at a time, and manage each issue as it comes up. I'm sure part of the emotional overload you're feeling is just being overwhelmed.

Recovering alone from surgery has been done by quite a few of our members - enough that we've got an article on Living Alone and Recovering from Hysterectomy. Not sure if this is where you'd read some of the tips, but I think it'll give you some ways to get creative. Tasks can be broken up: one of my friends who lived alone after her hysterectomy washed clothes and put clean clothes away by carrying a few things at a time since she couldn't carry a hamper or basket. Perhaps a laundry basket on a table by your washer or on top of your dryer can serve as the hamper for now. Certain tasks like vacuuming and sweeping are just going to have to be set aside for now, and that's okay. Meal prepping and freezing dishes go a long way, so hopefully you've had the time to do that. For dishes, wash by hand as you use them - it's a shorter stay at the sink than emptying a dishwasher from multiple days' worth of dishes.

Groceries... living in a pandemic world has changed grocery shopping and pick up, so you might be able to take advantage of that. If you've got friends nearby or groups you're a part of (church, quilters, scrapbookers, walking group) ask if they'd be willing to help with grocery pick up. Trash take out - there again, a little at a time, or get a neighbor's help. Often people are willing to help if they only know what your needs are. I let my friends know about my recent emergency surgery, and I had folks offer to help in the event my husband had to go out of town (he's executor of his late mother's estate in a different state).

Regarding ERT, you may not feel effects of surgical menopause intensely or right away. Our bodies store hormones and will tap into those resources. Also, estrogen is produced by our adrenal glands and fat tissue as well, so we're not totally without. What weight-related reason does your doctor give for not recommending HRT? There are estrogen choices which may be safer than pill form for they don't pass through your digestive system.

On the finances, do you practice budgeting or use a program like Quicken to track spending? There may be areas where you can reign in spending, even just temporarily, which tracking can reveal. If you find you can't keep up with bills, be proactive and call the vendor / provider about payment plans, partial payments, waiving fees, etc. They're much more open to working with you if you make the first move - by the time they're calling you, they're already stepping into collection mode.

I'm praying your surgery goes well and that good people will come alongside you in your recovery. Remember... one day at a time.


  #3  
Unread 04-05-2021, 05:24 PM
Re: Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

I had TAH BSO and was worried about being thrown into surgical menopause as well, and cannot take HRT because of needing to take blood thinners for a clotting disorder. It honestly hasn't been bad. I had hot flashes right after surgery and some mood swings but that has been it.

I live alone and had concerns about recovery. The best thing for me was buying a grabber. I used it for everything, from putting clothes in the washer to filling the cat dish. I actually still use it for things even though I don't have to. It's fun I did have a friend drop in to take the garbage to the curb and vacuum but I did find lots of people willing to help out. Even if you post something on NextDoor (neighborhood website) you'll get tons of folks wanting to help.

This site is invaluable, every time I had a weird symptom I found the answer to it here.
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  #4  
Unread 04-06-2021, 04:25 AM
Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone


In addition to the above, I recommend investing in a few extension cords so you can plug in your phone and other electronics without a lot of undue bending or reaching; you can also find economy-sized packages of disposable plates and cutlery at your local dollar store, which can really cut down on time spent washing dishes. Doing a pre-op cleaning blitz and filling your freezer and pantry with easy to prepare meals and snacks can also help. Best wishes for a successful surgery and a smooth recovery!
  #5  
Unread 04-06-2021, 08:05 AM
Re: Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

I had a separate BSO as well. Is your surgery planned as laparoscopic, or abdominal? That will make a big difference in what you can expect in recovery. I lived alone but had a laparoscopic surgery so had a one week recovery and did fine living alone. With any abdominal incision you will have a bit different situation. I was already menopausal but still had increased symptoms. After a couple months I did start HRT despite my weight, which was never mentioned as a factor. Not everyone experiences menopause the same so maybe you will have an easier time, but I recommend you start now keeping a symptom log of any hot flashes—time, length, intensity—sweats, insomnia, moods and so forth, so you can track and document any changes. It’s pretty universal to feel anxious around a surgery, especially one that could potentially have lasting effects. I felt that people underestimated the impact of GYN surgeries and referred to them as “only” a BSO. We are here for you and I certainly have been down this road. We are here for support.
  #6  
Unread 04-06-2021, 06:55 PM
Re: Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

Surgical menopause can be easy or it can be an absolute nightmare. There is no way to know how your body will react to surgery until you're on the other side of it.

Ovaries play a very important role in women's health, even after menopause, and it seems you still have questions about the surgery. It might be advisable to postpone until these questions are answered. IMO, doctors recommend ovary removal far too readily, often for issues that are not directly caused by the ovaries themselves.

Either way, best of luck to you.
  #7  
Unread 04-09-2021, 12:40 PM
Upcoming BSO: Feeling anxious and alone

  Quote:
Originally Posted by Krismary12 View Post
I had TAH BSO and was worried about being thrown into surgical menopause as well, and cannot take HRT because of needing to take blood thinners for a clotting disorder. It honestly hasn't been bad. I had hot flashes right after surgery and some mood swings but that has been it.

I live alone and had concerns about recovery. The best thing for me was buying a grabber. I used it for everything, from putting clothes in the washer to filling the cat dish. I actually still use it for things even though I don't have to. It's fun I did have a friend drop in to take the garbage to the curb and vacuum but I did find lots of people willing to help out. Even if you post something on NextDoor (neighborhood website) you'll get tons of folks wanting to help.

This site is invaluable, every time I had a weird symptom I found the answer to it here.
Thanks for the advice. I purchased a grabber and it has been VERY VALUABLE! I feel fairly good and am not as emotional as before. I was sent home with a Foley catheter due to bladder retention, and thought that was the end of the world while in the hospital. But like I said, I feel better about my situation now.
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