Renowned sitar player Anoushka Shankar has recently revealed that she “no longer has a uterus”. In a detailed Twitter and Instagram post, the 38-year-old music composer said that she had a double uterus surgery last month.
In a post titled “Lady-Bits”, she wrote: “As of last month, I no longer have a uterus. I had a double surgery: a gynaecological-oncologist performed a hysterectomy due to my large fibroids, which made my uterus as big as if it were six months pregnant, and an incredible surgeon removed multiple further tumours from my abdomen (which I blessedly then heard were all benign). One tumour had grown through my muscles and was visibly protruding from my stomach. There were 13 tumours in all.”
LADY BITS, by Anoushka Shankar
(Swipe to read about why I no longer have a uterus, and why I decided to tell you) pic.twitter.com/60laJGTWTg
— Anoushka Shankar (@ShankarAnoushka) August 30, 2019
Anoushka, who is the daughter of sitar maestro Ravi Shankar, revealed that she went into a short-term depression when she first heard the news. “The news triggered fears about my womanliness, my possible desire to have more children in the future, the fear of dying in surgery and leaving my kids without a mother, the effect the changes may have on my sex life and more,” she listed everything that worried her.
She further wrote, “I wondered why the surgery wasn’t talked about more if it was so common. When I asked, one woman, said in response, ‘Well, we aren’t exactly going to flash our lady-bits everywhere, are we?’”
Citing her own example, she added: “I look back and grieve for my younger self and all the girls I knew, for how much we were expected to cope with in silence. I’ve always thought of myself as someone who comfortably shares most thoughts and experiences. Yet I look back and realise I allowed my internalised embarrassment and shame around sexual health, and my periods, in particular, to remain unchallenged all these years.”