Post-Surgery Update (And Ramblings About Things I’ve Learned ;)

BRCA, BRCA1, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, preventative surgery

Oh hey there, sweet friends! I kind of feel like I need to re-introduce myself around here after my recent blogging hiatus! Actually, things may have seemed fairly normal at the front end of things– posts still went out on the blog and social media, emails were sent, updates were made. But behind the scenes here… I’ve mostly been sleeping, so it feels like it’s been a while to me! 🙂

If you’re new around here, let me catch you up really quickly. About 12 years ago, I was tested and found to have the BRCA1 genetic mutation, which makes me very, very prone to breast and ovarian cancer. (My mom, a breast cancer survivor, and my sister both also have the gene.) A few years ago when I turned 30, I had a preventative mastectomy to reduce my risk of breast cancer. My doctors continued to monitor me, and the plan was to have a second surgery to reduce my risk of ovarian cancer when I turned 35 (2 years from now). But after some test results continued to come back less than ideal, we decided to do the surgery now rather than wait a little longer. Friday, March 31st was the big day, nearly 3 weeks ago.

BRCA, BRCA1, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, preventative surgery

To be honest, I felt very calm and at-peace going into the surgery. And since I am a major worrier and typically stress out over even the smallest things, I totally attribute my lack of stress to God carrying me through this whole process and all the prayers that were being lifted up on my behalf– thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you who took the time to pray! I most definitely felt it!

I wasn’t allowed to eat after midnight the night before my surgery, and surgery wasn’t scheduled until 2:30 the next afternoon, so you better bet that I stayed up until 11:30 so I could eat until the very last second possible! 🙂 On surgery day, we took Connor (age 8) to school and dropped off Caleb (age 5) at my in-laws’. My parents arrived at our house, and I made everybody lunch (which I couldn’t eat– ugh!) before we all caravanned down to the hospital.

I got checked in, filled out some paperwork, and they took me back and got me hooked up to an IV. They also had me take some meds, one of which made me a bit woozy, so I’m glad there wasn’t a video camera in the room! I can’t remember what I said, but Donnie remarked several times that I was being funny, so at least I kept everyone entertained while we were waiting. 😉

They were running a little behind, but I remember them finally wheeling me into the [absolutely freezing] operating room, moving me to the operating table where bright lights were shining in my face, and then… nothing.

The next thing I remember was waking up in the recovery area. They had told me that I could only go home that night if I could totally come out of the anesthesia, so I remember trying really hard to keep my eyes open and be “with it,” even though I felt like going back to sleep.

Eventually Donnie and my parents came in, and since they had spoken to my doctor, they were able to tell me that the surgery had gone as well as it could possibly go, and that the initial pathology reports came back clear– there was no sign of cancer. This is what we had expected, but it was still a huge relief to hear it confirmed! PTL!!

After waiting a little longer to make sure I was doing fine after the anesthesia, we were released to head home that same night. The surgery was laparoscopic, so I had some soreness in my tummy area and was tired, but I was also pleasantly surprised at how much easier this seemed to be than my first surgery.

BRCA, BRCA1, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, preventative surgery

I was groggy and sore for a few days and spent my time either sleeping or sitting in a chair beside my bed. (What an exciting life I lead, right?!) The hardest day by far was Monday, 3 days after surgery. Apparently for a laparoscopic procedure, they fill up your tummy with air so there is more room to maneuver around in there. Inevitably, some of the air gets trapped, resulting in intense pain in the shoulder area. It also made it harder to breathe– I had to take really shallow breaths or else it would hurt quite a bit. Over the next few days, this issue worked itself out though, and at that point, tiredness really became my biggest side effect. It still is.

For a person like me who likes to “go go go,” the lack of energy can be sort of frustrating because since I’m not really in any pain, I feel like I should be able to be back to my normal routine. But much activity at all– a short trip to the store, folding a load of laundry, playing a game with the boys– seems to totally wear me out, and I am ready for a nap.

I’m slowly starting to get back into working on blog things. I really thrive on routine, so I was starting to go a little crazy without one! What I did learn from having so much down time though, is that it’s important to not only take a physical break, but also a mental one sometimes. I realized that even when I’m not “working,” my mind is often thinking about the next project or stressing about deadlines or email or worried that I’m not getting enough done. Giving myself permission to be 100% “off” for a while was good for my creativity, my excitement about upcoming projects, and just my mindset in general. I really need to force myself to do this more often (preferably without the surgery part next time 😉 ).

BRCA, BRCA1, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, preventative surgery

So what’s next? Well now we head into the part that I was/am actually a little more nervous about than the surgery itself. (I always feel a little weird talking about this part, so feel free to skip it if this is tmi… :-/ ) Hormonal side effects. For some people, they’re really minimal. For others, there are a lot of them. I’ve already started to notice changes in my sleep (I used to sleep like a rock, now I’m more restless and wake up more during the night.) and my temperature (I used to be constantly cold, now I seem to oscillate between way too cold and way too hot.), but I don’t think my mood has been affected. (You’ll have to ask Donnie about that one, lol.) I will be starting on a super low dose of hormone replacement soon to try to minimize side effects, so we’ll see how that goes.

It may take a bit to see what works and what doesn’t and get back to 100% “normal,” BUT I love that I don’t feel like a ticking time bomb anymore, just waiting to be diagnosed with cancer at any moment. I don’t have to constantly worry that my boys will grow up without their mother (which of course could still happen from any number of things, but was my biggest point of anxiety when my test results were coming back less than ideal). And I don’t have any looming, impending surgeries to worry about anymore. I knew they were coming for 12, almost 13 years, and now they’re done and over with and I don’t have to think about them. So that’s a relief.

The thing that totally blew me away, both with my last surgery and with this one, was how incredible and supportive people have been, how they have rallied around us in so many different ways. Through texts. Through cards. Through emails. Through blog comments. Through comments and messages on our social channels. Through care packages. Through flowers. Through home cooked meals. Through caring for our kids. We have felt so loved and supported throughout this whole process and have been so clearly reminded of the GOOD in people.

We have also been reminded that our God is SO good! I’m a safety girl. I like to stay in my little bubble and avoid anything that has the potential to be hard or uncomfortable. I probably wouldn’t have written this into my plan myself. I probably would have chosen to be “normal” and taken a path without cancer scares or surgeries. But I know that He knows better. He is bigger than all of it. I know that He has taught me so much through all of this and will continue to teach me and grow me on into the future, in ways that never would have been possible without experiencing hard things. And for that I am grateful.

Thank you all for your continued patience and support as we navigate through all of this. We’re hoping that things will be getting pretty much back to normal around here, and we’re excited to see what the future holds! Thanks for walking with us through this journey!

If you’ve missed the previous parts of my story, you can catch up in these posts:

Breast Cancer Awareness Month: My Story

Real Life: A Health Update

Final Thoughts Before My (1st) Surgery

Life Lately (2nd Surgery)

Signing Off for Now (2nd Surgery)

Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

 xo, Abby

155 Comments

  1. It is so good to hear from you and to know you are on the mend. As a breast cancer survivor, I know how difficult getting back to normal is. Each day is a blessing and will make you stronger!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your encouragement, Teri! Sounds like you’ve overcome a lot! <3 Hugs to you!

      ~Abby =)

    2. Jeannie Strohoff-Bourassa says:

      So glad to hear that you are on the mend!! It is easy to forget how mentally you are attached to something. Continue to take those naps Abby. Your body is saying that you are still healing. Listen to your body, it has your best interest in mind right now. You will wishing for some down time before you know it. Enjoy this, right along with all of the blessings possible. Hugs

      1. justagirlabby says:

        Thank you so much for your words of encouragement, Jeannie! That really means a lot! Hope you’re having a great week!

        ~Abby =)

  2. Cathy Baker says:

    I’m so relieved to hear that everything went well, Abby. PTL! Praying your doctor will receive divine wisdom with the hormonal treatments. Having the peace of mind that you have now is priceless. Welcome back! 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Cathy! Yes, it’s good to be on the other side of surgery for sure ! 🙂 Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  3. Oh Abby, I am lost for words here. Congratulations, or sorry that you have to go thru this? Either way you look at it, I know God is good. He will give you what you can handle and then walk you thru it- you just have to have faith. Your future was planned before you were even born so this destiny is yours- it’s what you choose to do with it that matters. You are doing a great job, very proud of you and your strength. Stay on top of your health, be an advocate and never stop loving life.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      He really is! Thank you so much for your encouragement, Jen! That really means a lot!

      ~Abby =)

  4. Jennifer Ingersoll says:

    I wish you the very best Abby!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Jennifer! <3

      ~Abby =)

  5. Carrie Myers says:

    So glad your surgery went well..You are a strong and very talented young lady..God Bless and looking forward to your next blog post

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Carrie! It’s good to have it over and done with! 🙂 Hope you are having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  6. Jan Stratton says:

    Abby, thank you so much for your post.
    It seems some of what you are experiencing could be menopausal symptoms. Having gone through early menopause, I recommend soy products. I switched to soy milk easily. I think it really helped.
    I also thank you for acknowledging the fatigue (I’ve had 9 surgeries and every time I slept so much! I think it’s an after-effect from the anesthesia.)
    I am one of the people who live with Chronic Fatigue. Just knowing there is another person out there who “gets it” helps me. Your fatigue will pass, and soon you will be your energetic self again. While in the slow lane, savor the time you have to let life flow around you while you observe all of her gifts.
    Blessings on you all.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh my, 9 surgeries! You have certainly been through a lot, my friend! Hugs to you! Thank you so much for your encouraging words!

      ~Abby =)

  7. I’m so happy you are starting to feel better sweet friend! I’ve been praying for you! So glad that your recovery is going smoothly. Take care of yourself. Hugs!!! ?

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Alison! I appreciate the prayers! Hope you guys are doing well! <3

      ~Abby =)

  8. Brittany Wise says:

    I am so happy to hear it went well! Wishing you a quick recovery Abby ?

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, sweet girl! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  9. So glad it all went well! I’ve been thinking of you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you, friend! <3

      ~Abby =)

  10. I’m so glad to hear that your surgery went well, and you’re recovering.

    I had my appendix removed laparoscopically a few years ago, and I remember the air bubble in my chest afterwards being the most painful part of the experience.

    My fingers are crossed for minimal hormonal issues for you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes! That darn air bubble was the worst part, lol! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Amy! Hope you’re having a great day!

      ~Abby =)

  11. I am so glad that you are doing well PTL.. You are truly an inspiration… Thank you for sharing your story and journey…

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, Saundra! They really mean so much! Hugs!

      ~Abby =)

  12. So happy to hear you are doing well! Thank you for sharing your story! very brave

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Desiree! Hope you are having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  13. So happy to hear you are doing well.
    You have been through so much.
    Thankful and pray for continued healing and health.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Ellen! <3 I really appreciate it!

      ~Abby =)

  14. Really pleased to read that things have gone well Abby. I’ve been sending you telepathic good wishes from the UK!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Sarah! Greatly appreciated! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  15. So glad that everything went well and that you are feeling better! Such a Courageous thing to do! I hope that your side effects are minimal! Thanks for sharing!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Beth! It’s good to be on the other side of surgery! 🙂 Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  16. Prayers sent! So thankful you are recuperating and cancer free.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Mary! The prayers are greatly appreciated! <3

      ~Abby =)

  17. Abby !

    I’m so happy to read that you’re doing well after such a tough time. Sending good thoughts your way always!!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Kelly! They are greatly appreciated! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  18. Jonna Ramsey says:

    Wonderful news! Thank you for letting us know how you are doing. God is good!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      He most certainly is! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week, Jonna!

      ~Abby =)

  19. Madilyn Davis says:

    So glad you are on the mend, and oh how those shoulders hurt. Try not to push yourself. Listen to your body. God Bless

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes– the shoulder pain was the thing that surprised me most! Thank you so much for your encouraging words, Madilyn! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  20. Great news Abby! Continue to mend and take it easy!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Tess! <3

      ~Abby =)

  21. It’s great to read from you, and not in a programmed post. I’m glad all the surgery process went well, I hope you totally recovery in short time.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Esther! That means a lot! <3

      ~Abby =)

  22. Stephanie says:

    Thank you for the update as I kept hoping surgery and recovery was going well. Thanks for reminding me how important it is to pause. My most recent post was about sleep and suggestions for a better sleep. I am a new blogger and so excited about writing content that 5-6 hours of sleep is my new normal. I need to learn to pause every evening.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      I hear you, girl! It is so tempting to stay up to all hours of the night because it seems like there is so much time to get things done! I ran on way too little sleep for about the first two years of blogging until I made myself change my routine– I was getting crabby, lol. Anyway, I’m learning more and more that good rest is an important part of the creative process for sure! 🙂 Best of luck with your blog– I can’t wait to see what you do with your site!

      ~Abby =)

  23. Hope it is okay to say “God Bless YOU”

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Absolutely! Much appreciated, Helen– thank you! <3

      ~Abby =)

  24. Michelle Johnson says:

    So glad everything went well and you are back home!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Michelle! <3

      ~Abby =)

  25. Amy @ The Quiet Homemaker says:

    Wow! What a beautiful and wonderful story. Your reliance on God is an inspiration. I wish you all the best in the rest of your healing.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Amy! I hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  26. Diane Hannan says:

    Great news, it sounds like things went very well. I’m happy for you & the family! As they say “You can’t keep a good woman down.”? ,
    P.S. I, too, had the shoulder pain a few days later after a surgery. It was worse than the surgery. Keep faith it will dissipate on its own time. XOXO

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes– the shoulder pain was definitely the worst part, and I wasn’t expecting it at all! Crazy! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Diane! Have a great night!

      ~Abby =)

  27. So glad to hear you are on the road to recovery after your surgery. I had laproscopic surgery myself earlier this year so fully understand when you had impact from the gas used to inflate the area. I had trouble breathing for ages.
    Awesome to hear your family and friends have been providing support during this time. I pray that the cancer test results continue to come back negative and you have many more years to share with your boys!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes– the shoulder pain/breathing was definitely the worst part! I was not prepared for that! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Rachel! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  28. NanaPennypockets says:

    Our God is so good. Once again he has blessed another “friend”. I am so happy to hear that everything went well. I’m a retired RN and just want to let you know that without any surgery it takes 6 full weeks for the anesthesia to get totally out of your system and during that time you can expect to be super tired and lacking energy. You will be amazed at the difference after that 6 weeks. SO treat yourself well and don’t try to force your body to do more than it feels like doing. It’s not hormones, laziness, or anything on your part. It’s the anesthesia and it’s totally normal.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      He certainly is! And thank you so much for sharing your wisdom about anesthesia– it’s good to know that what I’m experiencing is normal! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  29. Abby, I’ve been thinking about you and am so glad to hear things went well and you are getting back into your routine!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Kristen! That is so sweet of you! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  30. Katie Jones says:

    So happy to hear you’re doing well Abby! Couldn’t agree with you more – giving yourself permission to be “off” is so important, but yes, skip the surgery part next time. 🙂 You know that as a pregnant gal I was definitely wondering what hormonal effect this would have… I will keep you in my prayers for an easy transition with that part! Keep resting!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Katie! The prayers are much appreciated! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  31. I’m glad to hear you are on the mend and feeling better. I’m also glad you have less anxiety about the future. Peace rules. Isn’t that shoulder pain awful?! I experienced it after my c-section with twins. No one ever told me about that pain. When I called the nurse, crying, she came and looked at me like I had two heads. No one could relate and they didn’t sympathize at all. I told a friend about it who ended up experiencing the same thing after a c-section and she was so glad I had told her about it. I couldn’t hold my babies or nurse them…it was terrible, but thankfully, it only lasted a couple days (for me).
    I hope all the side effects from your surgery get under control and you can resume “normal” again.
    Hugs, Kathy

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh my! That must have been a lot to deal with with twins on top of everything! I was definitely shocked by the shoulder pain for sure. Thank you so much for your sweet words, Kathy! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  32. Judy McCollum says:

    Happy that the news is good and you are on the mend. I will continue my prayers and thank you for sharing this with us. Our God is a loving God and I am so glad he is taking care of you.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      He certainly is! Thank you so much for your prayers, Judy! They are much appreciated! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  33. I’m happy to read everything went well. Just relax, you deserve it 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Michaela! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  34. What an answer to prayer for you and your family – rest and take care of yourself! xo, Becky

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, friend! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  35. Abby,
    So thankful you’re doing well! The first time I had laparoscopic surgery no one warned me about “air bubbles” so when the pain hit I thought for certain I had been dropped when they moved me from one bed to another! Who knew trapped air could be so uncomfortable! Glad that phase is over for you! Keeping you in my prayers!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      It is painful, right?! Kind of crazy! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Gail! Have a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  36. Sarah | The Teacher's Wife says:

    So glad you are on the mend and that surgery went well! You’ve been in my thoughts and prayers!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Sarah! The prayers are greatly appreciated!! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  37. I think it’s really great that you’re willing to talk about something so personal. I’m sure it will help lots of people in many ways. Hope you’re recovery continues to go well!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, Helen! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  38. Happy to hear from you, Abby! Wishing you a great and full recovery!

    I am curious about your sister’s state of mind. I understand she did not go through any surgey but I guess it must be a huge question to her too as she bears the same gene. How do you both stand on that very personal issue?

    Wishing you the best,
    xoxo

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Caroline! Brittany is about 3 years younger than me and just had her first baby, so she’s a few steps behind me in the process. She will probably have one more child and then is planning to have the same surgeries I did. As the protective older sister, I’m glad she got to see me go through them first so she’ll know what to expect when the time comes, but it will probably still be a few years for her! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  39. Vivs Long-Ferguson says:

    Hi Abby – hope you are taking care of yourself and your family.
    Love the blog and always read your fun, engaging emails.
    Take Care

    Vivs

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Vivs! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  40. Theresa Buker says:

    So glad to hear you are on the mend. A ton of us have been keeping you and your family in our prayers, and will continue to do so. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Theresa! The prayers are greatly appreciated! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  41. So glad the surgeries are behind you and you dont have to worry about them anymore.. Now it’s on to healing and peace of mind ….

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes! It’s great to be on the other side of the surgeries for sure! Hope you’re having a wonderful week, Robyn!

      ~Abby =)

  42. Shelley Collison says:

    Abby it is so good to hear from you again. I am thankful that it went well and it’s over. Yes we serve such a wonderful God! I am glad that He has taught you so much and that you have put your trust in Him. Thank you for sharing this journey with all of us, I am so glad to be a part of it. xo

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes, God is so good! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Shelley! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

      1. Shelley Collison says:

        You’re welcome Abby. Yes I hope you have a wonderful week too. ?

  43. nicole | The Professional Mom Project says:

    Happy to hear that the surgery went well and that they didn’t find any cancer. what a relief! take care and wishing you a speedy recovery

    1. justagirlabby says:

      It certainly was a relief for sure! Hope you’re having a great week, Nicole!

      ~Abby =)

  44. Praise the Lord! So glad you are recovering and all is going well. Been praying for you. Praying for complete restoration. Thank you for the update.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Maury! The prayers are greatly appreciated! <3 Hope you're having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  45. Susanne Blumer says:

    Nice to read your update and hear you are doing better. I had pleurisy before and it sounds very similar to your shoulder pain. It was horribly painful! God never leaves us in our times of trouble. 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh I’m sorry you had to go through that, Susanne! It really is rough! Thank you so much for your encouragement! Have a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  46. Hi Abby So glad you are on the road to recovery. It’s amazing that they can do such a big op like that by laparoscope. These doctors are so clever. I imagine it like a big vacuum cleaner. How do they know when to stop & not suck all your insides out!!Ha ha. I can’t believe you came home the same day though.
    The worst is over now – it must have been hanging over you for years. It was a brave decision but the right one. Take it easy & have a wonderful Sunmer.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you, Shirley! Yes, I am always amazed (and so thankful) at what they are able to do with technology! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  47. Barbara Heathcote says:

    Abby – thanks so much for updating us. You are an inspiration to others who have BRCA1 and have not gone down the “surgery journey” yet. Sending prayers and hugs for continued healing and more energy as you heal.
    Sending love and prayers!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, Barbara! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  48. Sasha Moore says:

    You are so brave! I recently went through a Sunday process and have been deemed cancer free. I had a cone biopsy and it’s stressful thinking about the what if’s. Only God can truly give you peace and fat results! Take care of you so you can continue to help others ava of course your family. Thanks again and I’ll pray for your continued healing!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      So glad to hear that you were cancer free, Sasha! You are right– the “what ifs” can definitely be stressful! Thank you so much for your encouraging words! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  49. I think it very courageous of you to share your story and I know there are women with the same struggles, fears, and decisions who will find strength and hope in your journey. May God continue to bless and keep you. 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your encouragement! It really means a lot!

      ~Abby =)

  50. Abby, since you have family history of cancer, consider seeing a naturopathic doctor to find a natural solution to loss of hormones. I did this after my hysterectomy last year since I am not able to take any kind of hormones – they make me high strung and a shrew – and they worked wonders! The Dr made up a herbal tea for me and it toned down the symptoms and now I only drink it once in a great while.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thanks so much for sharing your experience, Terri! I will look into it! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  51. Melanie Dowdy says:

    So glad you are through with the surgeries. Might I suggest “Bio-identical” hormones. I believe they are much safer than those name brand hormones. I am also concerned about your fatigue. If it doesn’t resolve soon, or you start experiencing any unexpected pain, please consider Fibromyalgia. Like you, I always pushed myself…too much. Be careful and make sure you have enough “downtime!” Blessings to you and your family!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for the recommendations, Melanie! I will look into it! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  52. K Ann Guinn says:

    So glad that things went well for you, and that you’re on the mend! Thanks for sharing your story with us.

    I just had day surgery on my index finger a couple of weeks ago (after slipping while cutting watermelon and severing the tendon), and surprised how much even this took out of me! And now the recuperation is quite a process, along with doing life with mostly one hand.

    Thanks for the reminder to slow down and trust the healing process. I too am so thankful for our great God and the support of loved ones, even through this little medical procedure.

    Praying for continued healing, peace and strength for you.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh my goodness, that does sound like a process! I hope your finger heals up quickly so you can get back to normal life! 🙂 Thank you so much for your sweet words, K Ann!

      ~Abby =)

  53. So thankful your surgery went well and you are feeling better! I will be praying that all of the tests come back without any further problems for you! I enjoy your blog so much! I even decided to start my own blog, with your help, of course! I’m taking baby steps following your email-a-day plan, but I will get there!

    Take care!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, Karen! And best of luck with your blog! I look forward to seeing what you do with it!

      ~Abby =)

  54. Kay Quinn says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your story and your faith, Abby! It’s wonderful to hear that the surgery went well and God has wrapped you in His love and comfort through the kindness of the people He has put in your path. Here’s to a speedy rebound of your energy level and many new adventures!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your encouraging words, Kay! They really mean so much! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  55. Prayers for a quick recovery. Take care of yourself. Your family needs you.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Theresa! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thanks so much for the recommendation, Jenn! I have heard of people using oils for regulating oils but haven’t tried it myself. I will take a look at the blend you mentioned! Have a wonderful day!

      ~Abby =)

  56. RONALD ANTINORA says:

    GOD BLESS AND BE WELL, ABBY!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much!! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  57. Karen Ploransky says:

    So happy that your on the mend and all is well sweet girl! Hopefully this will give you a peace that must have been very hard to find before. God Bless!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Karen! I’m glad to have all of the surgeries behind me for sure! 🙂 Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  58. Julie Briones says:

    Thanks for sharing, Abby. I’m new to your blog, but was introduced to you through Rachel at Maison de Pax. I purchased your Building a Framework because of Rachel’s endorsement. 🙂 You are bringing much glory to our Lord, in many ways. Exactly what He created you for! 😉 Thankful you are seeing His goodness through all of this.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh I just love Rachel– isn’t she the best?! Thank you so much for your sweet words! They really mean so much! I look forward to seeing what you do with your blog!

      ~Abby =)

  59. I’m so glad everything went well for you! I had an early breast cancer that was caught at stage 0, but was the fastest growing type. I had a bilateral mastectomy and reconstructive surgery in New Orleans in which the doctors removed tissue from by behind and reconstructed it into my new breasts. (I know…TMI, right?) A couple years later, I had a complete hysterectomy. I remember feeling how grateful I was to not have to worry, as much, about developing breast or ovarian cancer. I was sooooo tired after the surgeries, though. You will need to rest and take care of yourself. When you do too much, you will definitely feel it (not in a good way). I did not have BRAC 1 or 2, but cancer ran rampant on my dad’s side of our large extended family. You did the right thing! Your mind will be at ease!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for sharing your story, Debbie! My mom actually had the tram flap procedure where they were able to do the reconstruction with her own tissue as well. It’s amazing what they can do with technology! I’m glad to hear that you’re feeling well now and still feel like it was the best decision– that is so encouraging! I hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  60. I’m so sorry that you have to walk through this, but your strong faith and upbeat attitude is so inspiring. I’ve been praying for you and will continue to pray for you and your family. Thanks for sharing your story!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your encouraging words, Cherryl! They really mean so much! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  61. Thanks for sharing your story about your surgery and your experience! Prayers for a very speedy recovery! Take Care!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Jennifer! That means a lot! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  62. So glad all went well! Sending prayers and well wishes for a quick recovery.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Lynne! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  63. Michele @ Thistledown Domestic Creations.com says:

    God bless you sweet girl. I’m so glad you are feeling better. I just had 2 surgeries within about a month myself to remove some cancer from my left breast and 3 sentinel lymph nodes in my armpit. It’s amazing how sleepy you get through the day after surgeries. I’m a go go go person as well, so resting was SO hard! I described my breast as a ticking time bomb too! Plus your description about when you were wheeled back to the operating room was exactly how I felt! Keep feeling better and continuing to heal! We truly have an awesome God! Be well!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oh Michele! I am so sorry that you’re having to go through all of that! I hope they were able to get everything and that you’ll be back to 100% quickly! Hugs to you!!

      ~Abby =)

      1. Michele @ Thistledown Domestic Creations says:

        Thank you so much, Abby! I am keeping a very positive attitude and know in my heart that they got it all with the second surgery. We have to stay proactive in all that we do for our health. I see my oncologist for the first time on May 3 and will know what my next steps will be. Thanks for always being such a positive roll model for everyone. With the help from your Building a Framework ebook I was able to quit my full time job so that I can blog full time and allow my body to heal! Hugs to you right back, sweet girl!

  64. Karen Schravemade says:

    You always inspire me my friend, whether you’re at the top of your game pumping out posts and projects or whether you’re somehow managing to keep us all up to date even while you’re recuperating from surgery. You are amazing!! Seriously! You have the most beautiful heart and attitude about everything. I’m so so glad you’re starting to feel better. I’d wondered how you would go with the hormonal side effects afterward… hopefully the hormone replacement treatment will help with some of those symptoms and they won’t continue to bother you too much. I’m sending virtual chocolate which happens to be calorie free (amazing! Lol). Also, I came across this product recently as someone I know was using it for relief from hot flushes. http://www.chillytowel.com.au/ Thought I would mention it in case it helps at all! Much love your way beautiful friend!! xo

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words, friend! You are the sweetest! And I love virtual chocolate! 🙂 Thanks for the chilly towel recommendation too! I will check it out! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  65. Christine says:

    Glad you’re feeling better. Laparoscopic surgery isn’t as easy as it seems. Take time to heal. Just working my way thru your Building a Framework course and you are in inspiration to me, thank you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Christine! You are the sweetest! Best of luck with your blog!

      ~Abby =)

  66. Abby, I’m so glad to hear that everything went well & that your pathology test came back clear!! Hopefully your side effects will be minimal, and you’ll regain more of your energy each day. Thank you for having the courage to share this part of your story with us – I know it can be hard to divulge these things. I had a major surgery a couple of years ago and have looked to you and your blog as inspiration that you can get through those events and return to doing what you love. It’s so humbling to see how this community rallies around each other. Sending you best wishes for a full and speedy recovery!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, friend! I didn’t realize you had gone through all of that! Hugs to you! And you are so right– the blogging community is the best there is! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  67. Praise the Lord for your successful surgery but also for Him giving you the peace you needed before surgery, you are right God is so good! ? So glad to hear you are doing great, but remember to listen to your body and when it’s “says” I need rest, then rest (as a fellow hysterectomy lady who knows how you are feeling)!
    Again, so pleased to hear you are doing great and look forward to more awesome posts! ?
    Xoxo Christie ?

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your encouragement, Christie! It really means a lot! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  68. Pleased to hear your surgery went well and you’re slowly recovering. How wonderful to have so many people supporting you, it certainly makes a difference!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much, Sami! You’re right– it does make such a huge difference! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  69. Jessica Davis says:

    Glad your surgery went well and I hope you now have a new inisght on life

  70. Tiff|18thavenuemom.com says:

    Oh Abby, I’m so glad that you are getting back into the swing of things! It’s awesome that you have had so much love and support throughout this process, and that you have been feeling the effects of everyone’s prayers. You touch lives through your blood and your story, so it’s the least we can all do to give some back. God is so good, and He’s got you, no matter what life throws at you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for your sweet words, Tiff! They really mean a lot! <3 Hope you're having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  71. My mom & my aunt are breast cancer survivors. None of us carry the gene. I got laparoscopic surgery in January for endometriosis . Ugh the air! I slept on a chair too! I’m already doing yoga again:) I have to keep an eye on my breast health too but I don’t have to have any procedures done (so far). Congrats on your healing!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      So glad to hear that you didn’t have to deal with the gene! (And yes– isn’t the air awful?! Ugh.) Thank you so much for your sweet words, Amy! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  72. Melanie Wilson says:

    Just found your blog because of the Evernote course included in the Ultimate Homemakers bundle. I loved the course! You’re an inspiring lady and I am praying that your hormones will be balanced quickly. God bless you and your precious family.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Aw, thanks so much, Melanie! Glad you enjoyed it! Have a wonderful weekend! <3

      ~Abby =)

  73. Abby, I don’t know what brought me here tonight. It’s been a while! But it was well worth the good news and the testimony which followed. Thank you for sharing your light and being transparent in the process. May the Lord bless and prosper the work of your hands and birth miracles through your presence! 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      You are the sweetest! Thank you so much, Sarah! Have a wonderful week! <3

      ~Abby =)

  74. Debbie Gartner says:

    So glad to hear this good news. Now, you are on the pathway to recovery and I’m sure each day/week, you’ll be improving. What a relief. BTW, I recently read one of your books and about to implement one of the affiliates you suggested this month.

    I can relate to this well as my dad has been in the hospital (double bypass surgery) and he had a few minor complications (that are getting fixed now). He’s been there 2 weeks and can’t wait to go home, and it now sounds like he may go home tomorrow. They were supposed to remove the last drainage tube last night. I’ll be calling him in a little while to see how things are going. He’s exhausted (obviously) – in addition to all the stress, surgery, etc, it’s really hard to sleep in the hospital. So, we are hoping tonight is the last night in a hospital bed and tomorrow is the first night at home.

  75. Abby, I very happy to hear that your surgery went well. I just had one a couple months myself and it was scary. It was a c-section and even though it had a happy ending I was scared. It is nice to hear that you are taking the time to just “be”. I just published a blog post about what I learned from surgery called “c-section: not the short cut” I think you might be able to relate. Any who, please take of yourself and you will be in my prayers.

  76. Wishing you the very best Abby.
    Your strength, determination and courage are so admirable!
    Everyday is magical if we can only see it. Now you can focus on making more magic in your life!
    Take Care 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      You are too sweet! Thank you, Lana! Have a wonderful day!

      ~Abby =)

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