A Personal Journey after Womb Cancer Diagnosis
Lavinia’s Story Part I
This is the first in a series of three blogs written by Lavinia about her womb cancer experience.
We were delighted that Lavinia joined us alongside Julia Pugh, a psychosexual therapist, for an evening webinar on intimate health changes and sexual wellbeing after womb cancer treatment in May. You can watch the webinar here.
Intimate health issues are extremely common following womb cancer treatment and are often not discussed or addressed. The webinar explored and offered advice on some of these issues.
Lavinia’s Story Part I
Christmas has always been a magical time for me and my family. With three grown-up children and two granddaughters all descending on us for the holiday season in 2014, I was looking forward to cosy evenings in front of the fire, music, country walks and plenty of festive celebrations. Little did I know that I was about to face one of the most challenging times of my life. I was 62 at the time, post-menopausal, happily married for 36 years to my husband and father of our children and working for the YES Organic Intimacy Company in a part-time role that I really enjoyed. My job involved liaising with medical professionals and raising awareness of the importance of vaginal and vulval health and sexual wellbeing. These topics were not often openly discussed and there was, and to a certain extent still is, a taboo surrounding intimate symptoms such as vaginal dryness, painful intercourse, lack of libido and bladder problems. In 2003, The YES YES Company had developed a range of certified organic intimacy products, including lubricants and vaginal moisturisers and in 2014 two YES products were listed on the Drug Tarif and available on NHS Prescription. I felt hugely privileged to be able to attend many medical conferences to introduce our products to GPs, Gynaecologists, Menopause and Cancer specialists. In order to learn more about the conditions affecting intimate health, I made it my mission to sit in on as many lectures as I could. This helped me to understand more about my own gynaecological wellbeing, but also to learn about the latest research and treatments available. I was able to listen to some of the top specialists from around the world and although my lack of academic qualifications meant that many of the charts and data were mind boggling, I still found the lectures fascinating and enlightening. Little did I know at the time how important this education would be in terms of my own health outcomes.