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Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting

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Unread 03-08-2002, 01:55 PM
Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting

Just thought I would re-post some of the hints I received that I found helpful, for any new ladies-in-waiting!

Once you're at home, you'll need to have some comfortable clothes to wear. I found men's pajamas very comfortable, because the large, drawstring waists came up well above my incision, and the button-up tops didn't have to go over my head (hard to get my arms up). You will probably want to have large, "granny-panties" in a size or two large than you normally wear (you will be swollen and sore!).

Have a tummy pillow handy at all times! This would be a small pillow that you hold against your abdomen when you have to sneeze or cough. Keep it where you can grab it with only a second’s notice! I had a sneeze sneak up on me once when I couldn’t grab my pillow – ouch! It felt like my insides exploded.

Have plenty of no-preparation foods on hand, like fruit, soup, cereal, snack bars, etc. I had absolutely no appetite for a couple of weeks, and my frantic husband finally convinced me to drink some Ensure, which went down ok. You may want to have some of that in the fridge for times you just don’t feel like eating, but need nourishment.

Also, buy PLENTY of juice! You will need to drink LOTS of liquids when you get home to help with the gas. I got bored with the same type of juice, so my husband bought lots of different types, and put them in small containers for me (I found it difficult to lift and pour large containers for awhile). Don't drink anything carbonated, and don't use a straw (makes the gas worse).

WALKING is very helpful with the gas! Walk as often as is comfortable (my walks were VERY short and slow, but I did several a day), and it should really help get your bowels working smoothly again.

I also found a shower chair very helpful. Standing up long enough to shower wore me out! You could also use any plastic chair that will fit in your shower.

VERY IMPORTANT: have anything you might need at waist-level. This includes toilet paper, pads, clothing, cups, food, plates, etc. Believe me, you will NOT want to bend or reach for anything! The house may look cluttered for awhile with everything sitting out on counter tops, but it's worth it!

If you’re going to be alone, make sure the phone is where you can reach it at ALL times! Several of us have gotten “stuck” (couldn’t get off the couch without help, problems in the bathroom, etc.), and have needed to call for assistance. I kept a tiny cell phone in my pocket all the time. That way, I could even call my home number from inside my house if I needed my husband and he couldn’t hear me!

Also, it may be helpful to have some cash on hand. If you have to ask a friend/neighbor to run to the store to buy some milk, for example, it’s easier if you have some cash to hand them!

Once you’re feeling a bit better, you might start getting a bit bored. Unfortunately, you will be very limited in what you will be able to do. These are some things I did to pass the time, along with some suggestions from other hystersisters:

Reading LOTS of books
Writing long letters to friends and family (real letters, not e-mail!)
Organizing photo albums
Drew out plans for the garden
Bought a tape to improve Spanish skills
Watching lots of movies
Crafts, quilting, etc.
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Unread 03-08-2002, 02:09 PM
What To Bring To The Castle

Hi Ladies In Waiting!

In the spirit of Chemyn's sweet and thoughtful post about how to prepare, I thought I would add my list of things to bring to the castle.

I've copied and pasted from one of my earlier posts. Hope it helps!

- backscratcher
- lip balm
- slippers
- my own night shirt/sleepwear
- oversize cotton 'unders' (comfy panties)
- pads (I also used them to protect my panties from the incision site drainage)
- toothbrush and toothpaste
- shampoo and conditioner
- comb/brush
- facial cleanser (I don't use soap on my face)
- Q-tips (to swab my ears after the shower)
- deoderant/antiperspirant (for after shower)
- lightweight cotton robe
- lotion
- ponytail holder (something to keep your hair from bugging you)
- some gals have also suggested bringing a PHONE CALLING CARD – great idea!

things I did not use:
- mirror (I did not care what I looked like!)
- socks (because I brought slippers)
- book to read (never felt like reading -- I was asleep every 20 minutes or so anyway)
- game to play (didn't feel like playing - TV kept me occupied between snoozes)
- change of clothes (I wore the same clothes leaving the castle as I wore when I checked in -- I just did not worry about the fashion police at that point)

...and I can't think of anything I should have brought but didn't...


Best wishes for you as you approach the castle!
Unread 03-08-2002, 02:18 PM
Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting

Wow! Such great advice for a LIW like me. 12 days to go and counting. Going to try hitting the high-nail cleaning spots this weekend and get my own night-gown and robe - all the ones I have are uh, too sexy, for the castle, or old & large t-shirts!! I did buy a set of pj's for the ride home for extra comfort. Thanks again for this wonderful site and all the heart-felt wishes and advice!
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Unread 03-08-2002, 10:00 PM
Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting

Hi ! I also want to say thanks for this post. I am having my TVH/BSO on 3-18 and have begun to pack things already so I won't forget anything. Thanks for the lists. They are very helpful.
I just need to get me some granny panties and then I think I am ready. One thing I have packed that wasn't listed , I don't believe,is a small cassette player with my favorite soothing music
just in case I need it. I am also taping my children saying some things to me so Whenever I need to hear their voice, I can. My 8 yr old daughter loves to read and she wants to tape a story for me. I may not feel like using the cassette player , but I'll have it just in case.
Best Wishes to you !!! Terri
Unread 03-09-2002, 05:52 AM
REASON for tummy pillow!

I have read, in many places on the Hystersisters site, about the need for a tummy pillow. But not anything about WHY it is needed.

As explained to me by an ex-nurse: A pillow is needed because it spreads the strain on your incision when sneezing, coughing or (horror of horrors) laughing.

Your hand on your stomach does NOT spread the strain sufficiently. In fact, wherever your fingers are situated, makes it worse.
Unread 03-09-2002, 06:04 AM
Helpful Hints for Ladies In Waiting

Wanted to say thanks for the post. I have surgery 3-12-02. TAH/BSO. This list will help me alot. Today I am looking for a yellow smiley pillow. When I have to use it I am hoping it will make me smile.

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