This past week on July 10, 2019 I celebrated my one year anniversary of my bowel resection surgery. So, in honor of this life changing surgery I thought I would share with you all some lessons I have learnt and how surgery has changed my life for the better.
My Life Today
This surgery truly did give me my life back and without it I don’t know if I would be here today. My quality of life in the months leading up to my surgery was extremely low. I was in pain every day, I was on a liquid diet in hopes of avoiding a bowel obstruction, I lost weight, I was on steroids, I was failing on every medication, and I was struggling to go about any kind of normal life.
Thanks to my surgery I am able to live again. I no longer have to worry about what time my stomach will start hurting. I no longer have to worry about making sure I drink all my meals. I no longer have to leave class early to accommodate my health. I no longer have to avoid making plans past 5pm. I have my life back and this is truly incredible. I feel so lucky to be able to say that I am in remission and that I made it through some of the worst pain and toughest years. Thank you so much to all my friends, family, and all of my online supporters. Without all of you I would not have made it to where I am today.
Lesson #1: Recovery is Fast and Slow
Throughout my recovery journey I found myself moving through different ebbs and flow. At some points I found that I was recovering very fast and others it felt like nothing was happening. So, in that time I learnt to listen to my body and try not to get overwhelmed with my recovery journey. Truly and honestly, I did not feel 100% recovered until end of October 2018. Therefore, it took almost 4 months for me to feel better in terms of stamina and strength. By the end of September I was very frustrated with myself and how long this was taking. But, in due time, with patience and a lot of hard work my stamina and strength was back to somewhat normal.
Lesson #2: You Can’t Do It All
It can be hard to swallow your pride and let people help you. But, when you are going through recovery it is almost impossible to do it all by yourself. Throughout my recovery, but especially in the first few weeks, I needed help with EVERYTHING. I needed help to shower, to blow dry my hair, to make food, to move from space to space, to get in and out of bed, and the list goes on.
These experiences are NOT easy. It is hard to let your mom and dad help you with all these things when you are 21 year old. But, it is necessary to understand that you NEED HELP. You can’t do it alone, so remember that this is only temporary and you will gain your independence back again.
Lesson #3: Your Body Is Incredible
This lesson may seem obvious, duh our bodies can do so many incredible things. But, I don’t think you truly understand how much your body can do until your body is thrown through the ringer and manages to fully come back around. It is honestly amazing what our bodies can handle and do every single day. Because of this I started to realize that I should try to help my body as MUCH AS I CAN.
For me, this meant listening to my body and feeding it good, whole food (for the most part), moving my body in a way that feels good, and tending to my mind. I have become super aware of all the functions that go on in the body every day, so I want to treat my body with respect, love, and kindness. Your body truly is a temple, so make sure you are honoring it everyday.
Overall, those have been the three biggest lessons I have learnt since surgery. I would love to share more on this topic if you would like, and I can answer any questions you have about the recovery process on Instagram or Facebook.
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Your trusty, gutsy gal,