Those of you out there who have ever gotten engaged, planned a wedding, held the wedding and then found yourself afterward--sitting in the limo, veil all tussled, dress minimally sweat-stained from the 'get down with yo' bad self' dancing you did at the reception--wondering, where did that day just go?!
You can somewhat relate to where I'm at right now.
Though surgery came up fast and the date hardly felt like it provided much time for me to process and plan beforehand...I sit here, boob-less, surrounded by my hospital straw-cup, hooked up to multiple wires and tubes--feeling a little like the last few days were some strange dream--that is until I look down at the drains dangling off of me, or look down my shirt at the 5-inch long scar-tissues on either side of my chest where the girls were located before all of this.
So far, everyone whom I've shown off my battle-wounds to has been making the comment that I don't look completely boob-less because of the swelling and also the tissue-expanders that are now in that give me just an edge of a 'bunny hill'... yet I still can't help but wonder if I'll ever feel totally 'boob-ified' again, even once the fake ladies are fully in place.
This recovery is certainly a process like all other parts of this hike have been, thus far. I'm beyond blessed to have two loving and supportive mom's beside me in this trek. The first, in the form of my marriage-mommy...Nana Z...who graciously took the little men home with her last week to alleviate us of just one more thing to deal with and be responsible for while adjusting to all other change. The second, in the form of my birth mama...Nana M...who has not left my side since I came out of surgery last Tuesday afternoon. She's held my puke buckets, wiped my face, helped me dress, done my house-chores, managed all my meds, woken up each night--every three hours--to go through the necessary routine with pills, potty-trips and drains.
Drains. Oh the drains.
I can't help but find it a bit ironic how a person like me, who cannot stand things 'protruding' from skin--especially my own--gets to sport matrix-like tubes from underneath each arm for the next week and a half. Not only do they make me feel more like an alien than my already bald head and eyebrow-less face did... but to have to empty them...oy. Let's just say I am sooooo utterly blessed (not like that hasn't been confirmed already) to have both a mama and a hubby whom, neither are bothered AT ALL by dealing with them. When we're not having to deal with them, I'm more than happy to just tuck them into my fashionable little hip-pouch (yes, a fanny-pack...but I'm desperate to avoid that term!)--out of sight, almost out of mind.
One thing to celebrate along the lines of my post-surgery contraptions, however, is the removal of my pain catheters last night! Yes. MORE wires, shoved under my skin--in fact, coiled around inside of my current make-shift ski-bumps--placed specifically for pain-medication purposes. Now, mind you, I'm all about the pain meds... but to have those hair thin wires, sticking out of my chest, running down over my belly and into a 'ball' of medicine that I had to cart around in my pouch, also... I was happy to see that medicine gone and have the excuse to remove them (rather, the excuse to ask hubby to remove them!!)
I won't lie and say it wasn't weird having Aaron pull these LONG wires out of my chest, feeling them unravel in the circular motion of their coiling, the pressure that it caused as they were pulled out.
But similar to the relief of a last push on that last contraction--the end of that wire let loose and came out, leaving me with tickly wires GONE from my chest and belly, less things to tangle myself up into during sleep or showers, and the satisfaction of knowing that the healing has continued and is far enough along that the pain-ball is no longer needed! Praise the Lord!!! :)
I was telling some cousins just yesterday that I've just accepted being the Drain Queen for this part...and to LOSE anything I've had to have hanging off of me just puts me one step closer to 'normal' again. ;)
There are still lots of unknowns as of now. Everyone keeps asking 'what's next' and I can't help but find myself feeling a little like the pregnant woman whose loved ones are asking whether or not she's going to have another...before this one has even entered the world yet, ha!
I guess what I mean by that is, just like every other part of this, I'm taking it moment by moment.
We don't have answers on path reports as of now and won't until we are at post-op appts on the 22nd of this month--where hopefully, I will also get these icky drains removed!!
We also still don't have any answers on radiation and again, won't until the path reports have been reviewed and best advice, around those results, has been given from my medical team and weighed carefully. Reconstruction will also be a process that will see us through over the next 9 months or so.
So, what now?
Just recovery. So blessed to be home in our comfy little abode to do so... so blessed by all who have signed up on the caringbridge and meal-train to help during this time. So blessed to already be making good strides in healing completely.
So blessed by all of YOU who keep loving on and praying over us. Truly, this is a battle... and so far from what we can tell, WE ARE WINNING!~