An honesty blog, the bumpy road ahead

An honesty blog, the bumpy road ahead

Over the last few weeks I’ve been having tests in secret following a quite invasive ultrasound and call from my GP 48 hours later urgently referring me to the Leicester Oncology team. While I’m relieved to say that I don’t have cancer I have been told that I’m going to need surgery in the next few weeks.

When my mum told me about her breast cancer diagnosis a few years ago I was upset that she felt that she had to go through the barrage of tests alone, only telling the family after her diagnosis. While it smacks of double standards, I made the decision to keep all the tests and appointments a secret because I didn’t want to worry the family with the news that an ultrasound showed that I had 2 masses in one ovary and a bloody cyst on the other and that I’m being referred to a cancer specialist for further tests. At that stage all I knew was that there was a reason for the discomfort I’d been feeling in my abdomen and that many blood tests showed that my cancer markers were normal.

So after 2 months of secret keeping, I’ve been able to tell the family everything and I am being scheduled for surgery for either a partial or full hysterectomy. My consultant has warned me that she can’t specify the extent of the surgery until she’s in there but to be prepared.

While I was relieved to be told that I didn’t have cancer, my head was ringing with the news that I could be heading into medical menopause at the age of 46. I’ve always been wary of adding extra hormones to my body but after a few days of thinking and reading, HRT will only replace what my body isn’t able to produce and I’m just going to have to make the best of things.

Both surgical options have their risks, implications and recovery times, but I’ve told the consultant that she just needs to do what she feels is best. So while I spend the next few weeks preparing or surgery, I know that my nutrition is especially important as exercise isn’t on the cards for me even though our home gym has had quite the upgrade lately, and recovery time for the partial procedure is around 2-3 months but the full is a minimum of 6 months.

I’m not diving head first into the world of menopause because when I went off to do some reading I came across many accounts of difficulties with mood swings, hot flashes, weight gain, lost libido……..basically anyone who’s had a less bumpy ride into medical menopause has decided to keep those details to themselves.

So whatever happens happens. I’m going to have to stock up on Evening Primrose Oil and I’m going to have to try very hard not to react to everything and treat minor comments as scathing attacks on my integrity.

I will continue to share my experiences but I’m not going to be defined by the loss of some or all of my reproductive organs, instead my passion for good food made healthy and giving my family best version of me remains my priority and main focus.

Apologies for oversharing but I hope this explains why I’ve been a little withdrawn over the last few months.

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Nella Foulds
Nella Foulds

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  1. Lisa
    27th September 2018 / 1:25 pm

    I’m just reading this entry now. I had a partial hysterectomy at the age of 33. I am 45 now. I didn’t mourn the loss of my organs, even though a wonderful nurse had a very lengthy conversation about the fact I was young and will have many years of encountering baby bumps and newborns in the future and to recognize that yes I needed to have this surgery but it will still hurt the maternal part of me to be removed from any possibility of the “baby bump” ever happening to me. It did hit me like a ton of bricks at the first day of preschool and low and behold there were literally 3 pregnant mommy’s at the drop off line and I went home and cried and also did infact mourn over not having that in me. But as time has gone on, kids have grown to teenagers and such, I’m very passed that part. Now, I’m trying to determine what could be menopause symptoms or just mad moods with timing or lack of patience with many things. I laughed when I saw how you mentioned the people who deal well seem to keep that to themselves while all of the nightmare stories are out their like laundry drying on a line. I too will be looking into natural “help” (as synthetic hormones and I don’t get along very well), healthy food and excersice are so important with good choices and daily movement (not alway a “workout” but at least movement) are a definite help if not for anything else but for my mind. Best of wishes. PS…I enjoy seeing a peek into your daily routines through Instagram and following along as you continue to succeed on many levels with your health and business.

    • 29th September 2018 / 7:16 am

      I never realised so many women went through this at a young age. I remember my mum being in her 40’s when she had her hysterectomy and I had a friend who went through it in her 20’s. Throughout I’ve been quite calm and collected, but at an appointment this week with my consultant reality struck when she was discussing the possible retention of my ovaries if they were healthy. I understand the implications having them removed brings and it sent me spiralling into a minor panic this week, so I’m thankful that I had the distraction of my small boys and the coffee morning to keep me ‘normal’.

      The procedure itself doesn’t worry, it’s what happens after that has me worried. We won’t know the extent of surgery until I’m in recovery but I know that in the end my surgical team will make the best decision for my health. Health has been my primary motivator since all this started and I’m looking forward to finally being able to resume my active life. Whatever my experiences, I will continue to over share because whether it’s positive or not so, my aim is to provide an honest account and if that helps just one person, then I’ll be over the moon!

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