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Although I try to refrain from sharing too much of my personal business on the blog I think that I have to do this more for myself than for you lovilees potentially reading this. At the end of last year I shared bits about my Grey’s Anatomy moment, my near death experience that shook both myself and my family to the core. I thought chatting about it would bring healing and over time hopefully some memory loss of the whole event, but that was just not the case.

Dealing with a laparotomy scar is not for the faint-hearted. When I initially heard that I had a hysterectomy at emergency surgery I was fine – my friend had one and she had showed me three little dots on her tummy where they did the operation from. I had plasters over my belly so I assumed that that was what had happened. Freaking out was literally an understatement – when they took the plaster off and I saw the scar from just beneath my chest to the bottom of my belly I literally freaked out! It was crazy, I looked like Frankenstein and to make it worse it was full of staples!

I was swollen and looked like an Oros man and felt even worse… I had a doctor friend that came to visit me in hospital that day who underwent a similar episode the prior year whom I was able to open up to and she managed to just listed and give me some practical advise. I needed to get someone to help with the princess full time and needed to try get some rest and time to deal with what was happening around me. When she told me that it literally took her 6 months to feel almost normal again I thought it was impossible – ha, little did I know the road ahead.

The first challenge was starting on hormone replacement. Yup, I was in full menopause even though I am only 34 because of the full hysterectomy. Getting the medication sorted was a challenge as even my ovaries were removed, so I was producing no Estrogen. My body was constantly aching and I had to drink painkillers just to get out of bed in the morning. Then my hair started falling out..

Even though my wounds were looking much better from the outside, but I was being drained emotionally and felt awful. I was waking up in cold sweats at night having continuous nightmares. I was just not able to function properly. I broke out crying for no reason and even the smallest task seemed to be a mountain. One morning a mom and dear friend at school asked me how I was doing and it was THE END…. I was finished…

This friend, a psychologist referred me to a trauma counsellor and it was the best thing that could have happened to me. I finally had a safe haven to freak out, download, start processing what had happened and reboot. I had full on PTSD (just like you see in the army movies on tv). I had to be debriefed and given techniques of how to cope with life and all that it threw to me…

6 months after the episode I started to resurface again and felt a little like the ‘old’ me. I am obviously not, some of the things that have changed are for the better and others… Well I need to still learn how to deal with those issues. I manage to sweat less about the small stuff, but my patience has flown out the door. I have learnt how to say no more and spend time on what really matters in life and hope that I will never forget this!

I still struggle and had a huge episode a few weeks ago being in a medical environment again and had to be calmed down and have started seeing my therapist again.

The things in life is what adds colour to us as individuals, the things that make us unicorns! Just because people don’t talk about their struggles does not mean they don’t have any.

Having lovilee as my creative outlet has been one of the constants that has kept me going. Having the want and need to put out articles to inspire others is what I love to do…

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Author

KaRi is the founder and editor of lovilee.co.za. She is also owner and creative director of weddinghangers.co.za. Learn more about her here and connect with her on social media on the links below.

6 Comments

  1. Natalie Vice Reply

    So glad you got some help and very sorry about what you had to go through. Just so happy you are still with us.

  2. Thank you for this article !!!
    I am going through PTSD after an accident and didn’t realize it , seeing a counselor now and hopefully I can get back to being ME again.
    Glad you got help and even tough its a process and a long road ahead, keep your head up.
    All of the best
    C

    • Thank you for sharing Celeste, It is crazy how things happen that can touch our lives forever. All the best with your journey, it gets better and I have learn’t it will be ok again even if the wheels come off sometimes. Know that you are not alone 🙂

  3. Kari I just read your post and your Greys Anatomy Moment post as well. Thank you for sharing! You are an incredibly strong and courageous woman. We meet people and dont realise their inner struggles not there real life trauma and struggle. I’m so glad that you are ok and that you are able to cope daily with what happened to you. There sure is the most truth in Jer 29:11 and I believe that by sharing your story countless woman will be touched and inspired to share their story as well. And I know that in sharing this you will encourage people who dont want to ‘see’ their ptsd to seek help to pick themselves up.

    You are inspiration!
    Chantelle
    La Fede

    • Hello Chantelle, thank you so much for the kind words! Having people that can listen and offer kind word and support makes it just that much easier!

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