May – Time for New Beginnings

“Letting go” is my month motto. Sometimes things happen for a reason or at least they happen to make us understand that we need to focus on more important things.

 

April was definitely a challenge. After being diagnosed for the third time with uterine fibroids I made the decision to undergo hysterectomy and get rid of this continuous stress once and for all.I didn’t have enough time to think about it, a few days before Easter I had the operation and then I had the privilege to take some time and  process everything that had happened. There are plenty of women who at some point in their lives need to make this decision and a big  part of them doesn’t talk about it and treat it as a taboo.Millions of women suffer from excessive menstrual bleeding a condition known as hemorrhagia but only a few hundred decide to treat it because for many women it is still considered as the operation that will strip them off their womanhood. In 2023 hysterectomy is still considered a secret that a few women are willing to share. The truth is that the less you talk about it, the bigger it becomes in your mind, so I decided to be open about my new chapter that is “my life without a uterus”. And since the moment I started talking about it I’ve  found out I have a lot of friends who are having the same gynecological issues and have the need to talk.

“ Around 55.000 hysterectomy operations are carried out in the UK each year which means that 1 in 5 women will have hysterectomy at some point in their lives while the most common age is 40-50, they are often carried out on women outside this age group.”

I am 44 and my problems started when I was 41 years old. Now I am officially a member of the hysterectomy club and even though I wanted to treat this procedure as any other abdominal operation I had to answer to questions such as “why so early?” , “ you are too young, you will enter menopause”, “you will age quicker than you think”, “why don’t you take some time to think about it more carefully?”.

 

Frankly, I got a little bit nervous when I felt obligated to answer to all these questions, because after all it’s my body and my  health goes first and an organ cannot determine neither my femininity nor my actual age. I am 44 and I feel 30. But when my health was at risk I decided to salute the organ which gave me my beautiful daughters, thanked my uterus for all those years of great service and said goodbye.Do I feel the loss? Of course I do. It’s been only a month and my body needs to get used to the new situation. I don’t know what the future holds, actually nobody does, but I do know that I have to make some changes to maintain my good health, be extremely careful with my nutrition, control my weight, exercise to maintain my bone density and last but not least take care of my mental well being.

 

Things could have been much more complicated if I lived abroad and had to deal with the language barrier, so finding the right gynecologist who will guide you through this procedure is extremely important. So, if you are a foreigner living in Greece aim for  English speaking doctors who will explain everything thoroughly and will let you know of your different options.Most importantly don’t hesitate to seek psychological help; we all think we are strong enough to deal with anything life brings us but we know it’s not true. Having someone to talk about your concerns and the things that bother you in your is a life investment. If you are going through this  stage and don’t know where to start from you can find information and support by clicking on the following links  https://www.eletem.org/?lang=en   www.urogyn.gr/hysterectomy-what-it-is-and-what-to-look-out-for/?lang=en

The Beautiful  Tradition of  Protomaya ( May 1st)

This weekend we celebrated the 1st of May and after many years I had the chance to live again our beautiful tradition and make flower wreaths with my whole family. To me it was more than a celebration, it was the first time I was feeling really strong and healthy after the operation. May in Greece is celebrated as the month of new beginnings and hope. People usually go out to buy flowers and plants to prepare their gardens for the warm summer days. The air smells relief and the whole city wears its most beautiful colors. Since antiquity the circular shape has been a symbol of completion, glory and eternity and in Ancient Greece and Rome many crowns were adorned with wild flowers, myrtile and ivy leaves. Nowadays, we hang the wreaths on the doors until June 24th when summer has officially started.

You can go and buy your favorite flowers and transform your garden at the annual flower exhibitions that usually last until May 15th. You can choose out of 2500 different plants and have the opportunity to learn more about the flowers of the Mediterranean region. For more information on the events click here  http://www.kifissiaflowershow.eu

May is not just a month, it’s a mindset. It’s a realization that whatever holds us back in life like fear for the unknown can become a new adventure if we decide to move forward. Change is inevitable and the only way to embrace it is by accepting it. Every year represents the completion of a cycle and the beginning of a new one, just like every flower wreath reminds us to be grateful for the things that have been completed and the new that are about to begin.

Ready for New Beginings
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