Intentional wellness…to prepare for surgery

Well, here we are just one week away from surgery.  Its been a roller coaster of ups and downs but its the final countdown.  I think its too late to flee and hope my uterus does magical things right??  Haha!  I joke…a little bit.  I had an unplanned c-section with my first baby so this has brought back some of the less than fond memories of that to be honest.  I think the pre op nurse thought I was a little crazy when the only question I asked her was about how swollen my belly would be because I was afraid of not fitting into my pants to go home lol.  Kimberly has been very gracious as I’ve talked endlessly about my obsessive hunt for the perfect post surgery sweat pants.  Its a whole thing.  All jokes aside, as soon as it was determined that I would be having surgery I felt a big responsibility to do the work of preparing my body to the best of my ability.  If this process has taught me anything, it’s that there are so many things we can’t control and may even surprise us when it comes to our health but there are a handful of things within our realm of influence that can maybe tip the scales in our favor.  I thought I would share what I’ve been focusing on leading up to surgery day in the hopes that if someone else finds themselves in a situation where they are having a procedure or surgery it may help a little bit.  

Nutrition – I’ve tried to keep on the track of an anti-inflammatory diet.  I’m sure this has a spectrum of what people consider anti-inflammatory so nothing too wild over here lol.  The goal has just been to mostly avoid things that cause inflammation: refined sugars, simple carbs, alcohol, and gluten while increasing the veggies and fruits.  I generally do these things but have been a bit more mindful during this time.  Of course there is balance in all of life so this has still included the occasional cocktail or glass of wine or sweet treat but just less in general…these are lifes little joys after all.  The other thing I’ve focused on is building up gut health with variety and gut strengthening foods such as Good Culture cottage cheese, yogurt and probiotics and being intentional about variety in my diet.  I have a small fear of antibiotics and a surgery sometimes leaves you in a position of not having a lot of control over that so I want my gut to be ready if I have to have them for any reason.

Movement – Kimberly and I have both used Madeline Moves strength training programming for several years now.  We love it!  She offers several programs in addition to her weekly moves so I have added in her Core Moves program to intentionally strengthen my deep core and pelvic floor muscles.  I really don’t know how my abdomen and pelvic floor will be affected with a robotics surgery but I am nervous about it so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to just fortify the area!  Haha!  I’ve also been very focused on doing my strength training and getting my steps in daily in the hopes that I will have an easier recovery.  Its been great so we shall see if it helps!  

Supplements – From a supplement perspective I have just added a few because I like to try to get my nutrition from my diet and they are expensive!  As with nutrition, the goal has been to add supplements that support gut health and are anti-inflammatory.  I’ve added Tumeric  which I have become a big fan of!  I have always struggled a lot with muscle soreness from my workouts and I’ve noticed a big decrease since taking it.  Highly recommend for daily supplementation!  I also started taking fish oil again.  This is great for so many things as well but since we discovered my estrogen bottomed out I wanted to do what I could to support my brain and my heart.  I like the Nordic Naturals brand.  The last thing both Kimberly and I have added is creatine powder.  This has also helped with the muscle soreness but the latest research has shown that is also helpful for cognition!  We both really like the supplements from Dr. Mary Claire Haver and feel we can trust the quality.  

Mental preparedness – The last thing I’ve worked on is trying to be mentally prepared. It’s so hard to know how to mentally prepare for unknowns right?  Life doesn’t slow down and as an enneagram 9 something like this can feel a bit too big and overwhelming on a lot of levels.  The “what ifs” can creep in and that is never a good rabbit trail to go down. Like most big things in life we have to process them in parts and pieces when really,  we wish to just push the pause button until we feel ready, haha!  I suppose its a mercy that we don’t get a pause button because half of us would be frozen in fear and indecision, haha!  I have had to work on being very intentional about leaving worries and fears that spring up in God’s hands and remind myself that there is a time to trust the skill of the surgeon and this is it. This weekend I will clean my house, get our meals organized and check off any odd tasks that I won’t want to deal with for a while.  This coming week I’ll work on getting plenty of sleep and wrapping up work tasks.  I have prayed over my fears and have friends who have as well, which is such a blessing.  I’m sure there are professionals who would offer many better ideas and thoughts than I possibly can in this department but for me this will have to be good enough!  

I suppose at the end of the day these things are not just surgery specific but overall wellness principles that I would say Kimberly and I both try to generally do in our lives, especially with our new wild hormone discoveries (if you missed our stories you can read the posts here and here).  Its perhaps just a bit more intentional and dialed in for what we hope is the best outcome when it comes to surgery.  Overall, I try to remind myself to hold all things loosely and as a delightful customer support representative said to me recently, “enjoy the rest of your day with a smile, a happy thought and a grateful heart.”  A good word for us all.  







Intentional wellness…to prepare for surgery

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