Putting Health First: My Experience with Ovarian Cysts


Let’s face it – we all know how awful it can feel when things don’t go to plan. For a good few weeks, I’ve been preparing to head off to the States on my first ever press trip with BrewDog Airlines. Flights, amazing accommodation, tours around Columbus, Cincinnati and Indianapolis. Spending money. All paid for. You know, the whole shabang. I’d spent hours emailing travel magazines and websites to set up blog posts and articles, walked many miles up and down the shopping centres in Budapest trying to find the perfect outfits for when I’m there, and basically just spending every minute being equally excited and nervous (in a good way). I was so buzzed to go to the US and meet other bloggers and journalists, and of course, sample the best beer and cider that BrewDog has to offer.

And then, my health had to go and fuck it all up.

Completely out of the blue, I started experiencing pains in my lower abdomen on either side, where my ovaries are, a few days ago. It was so bad that I couldn’t move. I knew instantly that I had another cyst on my ovary. If you know me, follow me, or have read the BBC article which I was featured in, you’ll be aware of what happened to me a few years ago.

For those of you who don’t know, I’ll break it down for you.

I had a cyst on one of my ovaries for a few months in 2013, which ended up rupturing. Me, being a total idiot, narrowed it down to food poisoning (due to the copious plates of Chinese buffet I’d consumed the night before symptoms started), and carried on going to work for nearly a week after it had ruptured. I could barely stand up straight for more than a few minutes, and my stomach swelled so much that I resembled a heavily pregnant woman. But yeah, you know, work was THAT important. (Looking back, it really wasn’t.)

When I finally realised it probably wasn’t food poisoning, I went to the doctor’s and was basically put in an ambulance to the hospital straight away, after they did a blood test and saw that I was anaemic. Turns out my stomach was full of blood, hence the anaemia and looking like I was preggers.

At the time, they didn’t know what was wrong with me, but they said it was most likely an ectopic pregnancy. Because I was losing so much blood, they cut me open and performed an emergency operation and two blood transfusions.

When I finally woke up and they told me what had actually happened to me, they said I was pretty lucky to still be alive because of how long I’d waited to go to the doctor’s. Like I said, I was an idiot.

Since this, I’ve had semi-regular ultrasound scans on my ovaries to ensure this doesn’t happen again. The last time I had one, several months back, everything was completely OK. Fast forward to a few days ago, and it turns out that the pain I was experiencing was, in fact, down to another ovarian cyst. At 5cm, this one’s the biggest I’ve ever had.

I found this out yesterday, three days before I’m set to fly to Ohio. When I asked the doctors if I can still travel, they said it’s not a good idea at all. My instant thoughts were: I hate my body. I hate my stupid ovaries. I hate everything. How can another bloody ovarian cyst ruin an amazing opportunity like this?

I’m not going to lie – I’m absolutely gutted.

BrewDog have been absolutely amazing about the situation, even though I’ve had to be THAT person and cancel just two days before I’m supposed to go.

I’m moping, crying, and feeling sorry for myself. I’m dosed up on antibiotics and painkillers and writing this blog post to try and make myself feel at least a tiny bit better.

In hindsight, even though this absolutely sucks, I guess my health really does have to come first. I don’t really fancy spending thousands of dollars on emergency surgery or a hospital stay if the same situation as six years ago happens in America. Erm, no thanks.

I know I’ll get over it, in time. I know I have one of the best gynaecologists in Budapest keeping an eye on me. And I HOPE another opportunity like the one from BrewDog will come up again, at some point in the near future.

But in the meantime, can we all just pray for my ovaries, plz.




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