I’m Danielle, I am 26 years old and I am going to have a hysterectomy.
The word hysterectomy isn’t something that many women in their 20’s talk about, understand, or even consider in their lifetime. It’s not a topic you bring up over a couple of margaritas with your friends. It is a topic that people avoid. I am still avoiding it to be honest. No one knows how to react to such a conversation. People want to comfort you, to support you, but how do you do that exactly?
I have always been the type of person to underplay things. I don’t like to make a big deal of anything to do with myself. I have booked in three days of sick leave for my operation. I know I will end up taking off more time, but I just can’t bring myself to have it in writing. My motto has always been, “she’ll be right”.
I have spoken about my struggles regarding my reproductive health for years. I haven’t hidden it, nor have I tried to sugar-coat it. It is real, it is heartbreaking, it drains you, infuriates you and it makes you question life. But what endometriosis and PCOS have done to me is more than just that; these diseases have made me become a different person.
In the beginning I didn't like the person I had become. I was depressed, I was angry and above all I felt alone. I felt as though no one understood what I was going through. I knew I had to change. My perspective shifted. I had to be strong, to be brave and I had to try so very hard to be positive. I knew I had to tackle this bullshit head on.
I have jumped through many hoops, but for some reason, I will never become a Wii Fit hula hoop champion. I have tried every pain killer on the market. Every birth control medication. I've tried natural therapies. I've changed my lifestyle. You name it, I've done it. Some has helped and some have made it much worse.
But for some reason telling my boss, a woman who has no children, who is incredibly successful, that I admire, that I am about to undergo a major operation, brought me to tears. Telling her made me realise that this is a big deal. That this is either going to make or break me.
I have been mentally preparing myself for this day to come for quite some time now. I didn't wake up one morning and decide "today is the day I have a hysterectomy". It has been in the pipeline for years - I have just been prolonging the inevitable. I've had many conversations about it, with many doctors - but for some reason, once it is set is stone, my emotions have begun to run wild.