Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities | HysterSisters
HysterSisters Hysterectomy Support and Information
Advertising Info HysterSisters Hysterectomy Support Tutorial

Go Back   Hysterectomy HysterSisters > Hysterectomy Support Posts > Preparing for Hysterectomy (pre hysterectomy)


HysterSisters.com is a massive online community with over 475,000 members and over 5 million posts.

Our community is filled with women who have been through the Hysterectomy experience providing both advice and support from our active members and moderators.

HysterSisters.com is located at 111 Peter St, Toronto, Canada, M5V2H1 and is part of the VerticalScope network of websites.

With free registration, you can ask and answer questions in our HYSTERECTOMY forum community, get our FREE BOOKLET, access Hysterectomy Checkpoints and more.

You are not alone. The HysterSisters are here for you. Join us today!
join HysterSisters for hysterectomy resources and support
Reply

Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

Thread Tools
  #1  
Unread 07-21-2021, 08:40 PM
Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

I am scheduled for a TAH at the very end of August. I don't work ouside of the home, but I am a homeschooling mama. My kids are all older (will be 8th grade, 9th grade, and 12th grade) and are very self sufficient. Obviously, I can't take 6 weeks completely off from "work," so I'm trying to figure out what to cancel and for how long.

My plans right now are to take week one completely off, but have the children begin their school work during week two of my recovery. All I have to do is see what they've completed. I can rest/ nap/ etc as desired.

When did you feel up to driving? (I asked my doctor about driving and I'm pretty certain she'll let me drive before I'm going to want to.)

When did you feel up to doing short activities for example attending church or a meeting of about 1 hour?

When did you feel up to outings that were longer but not physically demanding? For example a meeting of several hours.

Thanks in advance.
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2  
Unread 07-21-2021, 11:25 PM
Re: questions about returning to more "normal" activities

  Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineyBob View Post
I am scheduled for a TAH at the very end of August. I don't work ouside of the home, but I am a homeschooling mama. My kids are all older (will be 8th grade, 9th grade, and 12th grade) and are very self sufficient. Obviously, I can't take 6 weeks completely off from "work," so I'm trying to figure out what to cancel and for how long.

My plans right now are to take week one completely off, but have the children begin their school work during week two of my recovery. All I have to do is see what they've completed. I can rest/ nap/ etc as desired.

When did you feel up to driving? (I asked my doctor about driving and I'm pretty certain she'll let me drive before I'm going to want to.)

When did you feel up to doing short activities for example attending church or a meeting of about 1 hour?

When did you feel up to outings that were longer but not physically demanding? For example a meeting of several hours.

Thanks in advance.
Everyone is different but the suggestions on this site weigh more on the 'rest and caution' side which I appreciate. My go-home instructions covered what not to do for 6 weeks.

I wanted to know WHY so much rest, especially as I felt surprisingly well the first few days. I learned the reasons for taking it easy are not about how you're feeling or what you "can" do, but about letting the stitches inside heal, letting your other organs wake up as they've been shocked and I learned what could go wrong if you do too much too soon. (Look up vaginal cuff dehiscence images for an idea of what can go wrong. It is rare, but was mind-opening to me.) Knowing all this helped me give myself permission to take it easy and helped me explain it to family members. I committed to the full 6 weeks but by week 4 turned a real corner and am doing more.

Yes, definitely take the first week off. Fill the freezer or whatever you need to do so the family can take over meal prep. My husband brought me daily carafe of coffee in bed along with what I usually have for breakfast (protein bar & fruit), then lunch, etc. I was spoiled but I also felt it was best. I loved it. I only got up to walk the hall and use the washroom the first week and stairs 2x a day. Day 3 I had a build up of gas. Felt like a bad period. I used a compression belt which I loved as it was soothing. I also occasionally put a heating pad on the belly which I think helped the gas settle down.

I used a laptop table on my bed which was helpful for my tablet, resting books, meals etc. And lots of pillows.

As to the homework, etc. I felt a bit of brain fog myself. I didn't take all my pain meds, but did before bed and in the morning and Tylenol & Advil every 4 hrs along with the gas pill and stool softener. It is due to these meds they don't want you to drive and also you have to be able to turn for window checks and step on the brakes if needed. I drove the first time today (My Week 5 was Wed).

My brain fog was likely a mixture of pills, mixed up sleep times, re-living the experience. My mind tended to want to process the experience. I didn't do online banking for 2 weeks as I didn't feel comfortable sitting in a computer chair as well as not mentally there.

Where I live in Ontario, Canada the churches have been closed more or less due to Covid for over a year. We have had several shutdowns back to back, so personally I get spiritual care through other resources and connect to church online only. No other in person meetings have been allowed without strict rules & masks. Our family decision has been to stay home as much as possible only going out for essentials. Our region is in a Delta Variant hotspot.

My husband did our shopping. The only walking I did was around my yard and inside my house until now. Today I drove & picked up a few groceries myself. I have also started a bit of yardwork. I know others have gone to family events, etc. and many say they were exhausted after. You could have a guest over to visit.

Yes, it is a bigger deal than we might first think! I've read many times over it is "major surgery". What I didn't know about was the swelly belly thing. I looked like I might have quadruplet babies my stomach was so large. Get a grabber tool too so you don't have to call on family members to reach stuff off the floor

Best wishes.
  #3  
Unread 07-22-2021, 03:49 AM
Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities


I'm in Ontario myself, and I'm slowly beginning to resume normal life, while still following all public health measures, as I'm now fully vaccinated, and as we slowly begin to open up after being in full lockdown since last December. When I tried to resume my normal fitness routine, my body, and especially my core muscles, clearly let me know that I wasn't ready to jump right back into it, but that I had to take things slowly, as you will after your surgery. Sometimes we don't recognize how the simple act of sitting uses the core muscles, and when they've become weak after a prolonged rest, you need to rebuild your strength slowly, for which I recommend something like an online Pilates class. As for driving, you'll need to be completely off all narcotic painkillers, and able to perform all the activities that are involved in safe driving. Just remember that recovery is a marathon, not a sprint, and as long as you listen to your body and take it slowly, you should be okay. Wishing you all the best for a successful surgery and a smooth recovery!
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #4  
Unread 07-22-2021, 05:17 AM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

  Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineyBob View Post
I am scheduled for a TAH at the very end of August. I don't work ouside of the home, but I am a homeschooling mama. My kids are all older (will be 8th grade, 9th grade, and 12th grade) and are very self sufficient. Obviously, I can't take 6 weeks completely off from "work," so I'm trying to figure out what to cancel and for how long.

My plans right now are to take week one completely off, but have the children begin their school work during week two of my recovery. All I have to do is see what they've completed. I can rest/ nap/ etc as desired.

When did you feel up to driving? (I asked my doctor about driving and I'm pretty certain she'll let me drive before I'm going to want to.)

When did you feel up to doing short activities for example attending church or a meeting of about 1 hour?

When did you feel up to outings that were longer but not physically demanding? For example a meeting of several hours.

Thanks in advance.
I'm about 2 1/2 months post abdominal surgery. I think there isn't a standard baseline for what "normal" means. From my experience so far, and reading the posts here, most of what people find normal is still too much. My relatives who also had this surgery said the best thing is to rest as much as possible.

I was out of my desk work for 8 weeks. My doc said that driving was an issue if you have to make a sudden stop or move.

I had difficulty sitting upright, especially in a hard chair for more than a few minutes until about 1 month. I mostly laid down or reclined. Standing felt better than sitting. It's not terrible now, but I still feel it.

I walked slowly for 10-15 minutes a few times a week for movement, not "exercise" per se. Some women tried to go back to powerwalking for mileage and had to ease back. Some said that pushing shopping carts was too much.

Let your family help as much as they can and invest in rest and healing.
  #5  
Unread 07-22-2021, 08:44 PM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

HI LaineyBob to HysterSisters!

I am so glad you found this site!

You have gotten some excellent input from the other sisters.

Recovery is different for everyone, but you really do need to think in terms of weeks and not days. You will not be bedridden, but you will need to rest much. You will take brief, but frequent, walks as these help you heal. You will need help with cooking, cleaning, dishes, laundry, shopping, and driving. You will have lifting restrictions: 10 lbs for 6 weeks and 20 lbs for 8 weeks is common. (A gallon of milk weighs about 8.5 lbs).

I had a TAH BSO. I was in the hospital for 3 1/.2 days. After I got home, my DH stayed home with for another 4 days, but then went back to work. I could take care of myself during the day, and do minor items around the house. I made simple breakfasts (oatmeal), and lunches (frozen, pop in the microwave). DH came home at night, cooked dinner, did dishes, and took care of necessities. BUT, much went undone - like house cleaning. In fact, my house was not cleaned for 8 weeks! DH would help with grocery trips and I would ride in those electric carts. I would point to stuff for him to get.

I went back to work after 3 weeks, but only part time. I did not feel like doing much outside the home before then. I also did not drive until then. I continued to work part time for another 4 weeks, and then SLOWLY returned to my life. I am a power walker, and it took me 9 months before I could walk the same speed and distance as before my surgery.

Remember that recovery is not a contest, nor is it a race. It is more marathon than sprint. You need to follow all of your doctor's orders to the letter - no additions, no subtractions. Listen to your body carefully, and do not push yourself too hard because if you do you could damage yourself. You only get one chance to heal right. Here are articles:
Too Much Too Soon After Hysterectomy?
Hysterectomy Recovery Time


Know that we will be by your side throughout this process.

  #6  
Unread 07-23-2021, 07:59 AM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

  Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineyBob View Post
I am scheduled for a TAH at the very end of August. I don't work ouside of the home, but I am a homeschooling mama. My kids are all older (will be 8th grade, 9th grade, and 12th grade) and are very self sufficient. Obviously, I can't take 6 weeks completely off from "work," so I'm trying to figure out what to cancel and for how long.

My plans right now are to take week one completely off, but have the children begin their school work during week two of my recovery. All I have to do is see what they've completed. I can rest/ nap/ etc as desired.

When did you feel up to driving? (I asked my doctor about driving and I'm pretty certain she'll let me drive before I'm going to want to.)

When did you feel up to doing short activities for example attending church or a meeting of about 1 hour?

When did you feel up to outings that were longer but not physically demanding? For example a meeting of several hours.

Thanks in advance.
As others have mentioned, the recovery process goes at a different pace for everyone. I am 7 weeks post-op today. I felt up to driving around 4 weeks post-op but was having some very heavy spotting (needed a maxipad instead of a pantiliner) around that time, so I did not drive. I also had an appt at which a surgeon (not my own surgeon, as she was out of the office) told me not to do any activities until my 6-week followup with my own surgeon. That 6-week followup will be today, even though today is actually 7 weeks since surgery. I still have not driven since before the surgery, but after today's followup appt, if all goes well, I am planning to drive to a haircut tomorrow.

I went to church in person (a 5-minute ride there, a 1-hour service, and a 5-minute ride back) on Day 16 after surgery. I did the standing and sitting parts. However, I didn't kneel -- tried to do so, and apparently kneeling uses a lot of core strength, so my body immediately protested and I sat instead. I also didn't do any singing, because it requires core strength (diaphragm muscles, etc.). A day or two later, I began having spotting problems (I don't think it was because of attending church) that led to period-like bleeding a few days after that. Two dr's appts later, I was told not to do any activities until the 6-week followup (as I mentioned previously), so my husband and I have attended church online since then. We are hoping to attend in person this weekend.

I have not yet done an outing (or meeting) of several hours. If such a meeting would require sitting in an uncomfortable chair (like a desk chair where you need to use core strength to sit upright), I could probably do it for 2 hours but not more than that.

Different ladies have different challenges after surgery. For me, the main challenge has been the occasional episodes of period-like bleeding (mainly Weeks 3 and 4, probably when internal stitches were dissolving). I can handle (and was expecting!) spotting, but anything beyond that has been scary and an emotional downer. I am hoping that I'm beyond that now. For others on this site, challenges have included pain, fatigue, UTI, etc. My dr had led me to believe that because my surgery was laparoscopic, I would do most of my recovery during the first 2 weeks, and then I would be doing most of my normal stuff around 4 weeks post-op. That has not turned out to be true at all.

As others have said, even if the surgery is laparoscopic, it's still a major surgery. All the same cutting and suturing and stitching is done internally, regardless of whether the surgery is done abdominally or laparoscopically. A lot of things need to heal internally, and that process can't be rushed.
  #7  
Unread 07-24-2021, 04:47 PM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

Thank you everyone for your responses. I know it sounds like I'm chomping at the bit to be able to get back to normal, but I'm totally prepared to let my family take care of most things for the full 6-8 weeks.

The things I'm most worried about are my kids' classes that take place outside the home. Some of them are required for graduation so they can't miss for my entire recovery time. Under normal circumstances I MUST be in the building so I have to make special arrangements with the organizers and with friends to cover what I can't.
  #8  
Unread 07-24-2021, 06:55 PM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

Hi LaineyBob -

Your recovery is very important for your immediate and long-term health. I found everyone people very understanding when I needed help, and were ready to lend a hand. Most folks know just how major of a surgery this is.

  #9  
Unread 07-24-2021, 11:51 PM
Re: Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

  Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineyBob View Post
Thank you everyone for your responses. I know it sounds like I'm chomping at the bit to be able to get back to normal, but I'm totally prepared to let my family take care of most things for the full 6-8 weeks.

The things I'm most worried about are my kids' classes that take place outside the home. Some of them are required for graduation so they can't miss for my entire recovery time. Under normal circumstances I MUST be in the building so I have to make special arrangements with the organizers and with friends to cover what I can't.
Sounds like a good plan. If those classes are around your week 4,5,6 may be doable. Hopefully it all coordinates well for you.
  #10  
Unread Yesterday, 11:22 AM
Upcoming August hysterectomy - questions about returning to more "normal" activities

  Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineyBob View Post
I am scheduled for a TAH at the very end of August. I don't work ouside of the home, but I am a homeschooling mama. My kids are all older (will be 8th grade, 9th grade, and 12th grade) and are very self sufficient. Obviously, I can't take 6 weeks completely off from "work," so I'm trying to figure out what to cancel and for how long.

My plans right now are to take week one completely off, but have the children begin their school work during week two of my recovery. All I have to do is see what they've completed. I can rest/ nap/ etc as desired.

When did you feel up to driving? (I asked my doctor about driving and I'm pretty certain she'll let me drive before I'm going to want to.)

When did you feel up to doing short activities for example attending church or a meeting of about 1 hour?

When did you feel up to outings that were longer but not physically demanding? For example a meeting of several hours.

Thanks in advance.
I had a TAH on 6/23. Your recovery may be different than some others here because of the incision and longer hospital stay. I was in the hospital 4 full days with mine. My incision is from above navel all the way down. There is pain and care associated with the incision, and driving for me wasn’t until about 4 weeks out because I didn’t feel comfortable turning my head/twisting body changing lanes etc, or stopping suddenly. I probably could have attended an hour long activity after about 3 weeks but I simply didn’t feel like doing anything. I am back to work on Monday after almost 6 weeks, and am feeling fairly good. My incision is healing well and my belly just gets swollen but otherwise is ok. I have noticed a lot of other woman who get less invasive surgeries (vaginal hyst, etc) seem to report bleeding and spotting, but I had none of that. Good luck to you, you will do great!
Reply

booklet
Our Free Booklet
What 350,000 Women Know About Hysterectomy: Information, helpful hints as you prepare and recover from hysterectomy.
Answers to your questions
Register




Thread Tools

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
From This Forum From Other Forums
8 Replies, Last Reply 08-02-2020, Started By Joyfulnoise777
2 Replies, Last Reply 07-20-2018, Started By kenandellie
4 Replies, Last Reply 07-20-2018, Started By kayspeaks
9 Replies, Last Reply 05-26-2018, Started By heirloomtomatoe
5 Replies, Last Reply 02-20-2018, Started By Kage Davis
12 Replies, Last Reply 01-19-2016, Started By KieCat
8 Replies, Last Reply 08-10-2010, Started By ndonahue46
3 Replies, Last Reply 05-21-2010, Started By hmg61brd
7 Replies, Last Reply 04-15-2002, Started By Frequent Flyer
7 Replies, Last Reply 11-14-2000, Started By vidiot
3 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
1 Reply, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
6 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
1 Reply, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
5 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
10 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
3 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
9 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
4 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)
7 Replies, Hysterectomy Recovery (post hysterectomy)



Advertisement

Hysterectomy News

August 1,2021

CURRENT NEWS

HysterSisters Takes On Partner To Manage Continued Growth And Longevity
I have news that is wonderful and exciting! This week’s migration wasn’t a typical migration - from one set ... News Archive

TODAY'S EVENTS

Calendar - Hysterectomies - Birthdays


Request Information


I am a HysterSister

HYSTERECTOMY STORIES

Featured Story - All Stories - Share Yours

FOLLOW US


Your Hysterectomy Date


CUSTOMIZE Your Browsing  


$vbulletin->featuredvideos is not an array!
Advertisement


Advertisement