Monthly Archives: August 2016

Still Alive Saturday?

So it appears whatever they gave me in theatre worked… really really well. at 9pm I was still in recovery out for the count – only rousing to vomit.. nice!  I remember them trying to wake me and trying to talk but every time I moved I was sick.. then back to sleep again. They kept giving me anti sickness meds, then realised that they would be making me drowsy too! Eventually I woke up enough to leave their care as was transferred down to a side room on the women’s ward.

I don’t remember much that evening – I slept lots, vomited even more. But i dont remember waking in huge amounts of pain, it was uncomfortable dont get me wrong and I was dosed up but it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting.

The following morning the nurses appeared with two heart pillows for me. Now I knew about these pillows as my lovely friends at Breast Friends York make them, the shape is very important as they sit under your arm and support the area. The relief once I stuck one of them under each arm was amazing.

I had a drain coming from each side, this was to drain post op mank and fluid etc that my body would send to the expanse of space where my  boobs once were. The nurses had helpfully put them into carrier bags (no 5p charge!) so that I could toddle about easier with them.

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I toddled off to the toilet feeling very strange. It hurt but not in a OMG who chopped off my boobs way, but in my arm and my shoulders, and across the top of my chest – a weird tightness. I had a look in the mirror in the toilet, and if im honest had a little cry. I couldn’t see anything as it was covered with bandages but it was flat, and strange and not me… and OMFG who fed me like a prime foie gras whilst I was in theatre cos Im damn sure my stomach wasnt that big when I went into theatre!

You see when you are a HH as I was, you see very little past your breasts –  my feet, my stomach.. all there of course but not in my eye-line, my clothes didn’t hug my stomach cos it was overshadowed by Mount Mamarries, but suddenly that was gone and all I could see was my huge stomach! I cried again.. balls this is getting to be a habit. I was also surprised at what felt like a huge dent under my arm pit. The doctor reassured me that if needed it could be sorted when I have a reconstruction, and I suppose removing a large lump will leave a hole but it took my by surprise, oh well I suppose I have somewhere to keep my phone now rather than in my bra!

The kids came to visit and were surprisingly un bothered by it all, they looked at my bandages and that was it. My hospital stay was longer than I expected, the pain although not excruciating was pretty bad across the top of my chest, but the tramadol etc had little effect – I expect cos I have been on it years so somewhat immune. This meant that my option was Oramorph, which was making me sick.. and they wouldn’t discharge me whilst I was still being sick. I was also anemic, coupled with surgery blood loss and the fact that the last 7 months has been like a high speed train ride I was shattered.. like properly exhausted, so in a way the rest helped.

Whilst I was in a breast nurse appeared from the unit – she brought some handmade drain bags so I no longer looked like a wino with my carriers as well as a pair – apparently a rare occurrence! – of soft prosthesis. She brought two sizes with her a c and a d cup.. i went with the bigger pair as I was already dealing with a lot of changes and felt going a lot smaller would be a step too far.

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Millie adored them! she tested them for softness by laying her head on them and exclaiming awwww soft and squishy.. it remains to see if they look OK!

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Flat Friday

So its here.. Flat Friday .. thank god its a Friday cos I’m too tired to think up a witty name for it had it not been .. whip them off Wednesday maybe?

As expected I slept badly, I cried a little, had a jiggle of the girls for the last time, fell asleep the woke up to my alarm 10 mins later.. you would think even sods law would give me a break today!

Determined that even today I was going to carry on as normal I got dressed in one of my favourites and donned a colourful wig. Was Nil by mouth so no chance of breakfast.. so went and sat downstairs waiting for my lift. Whilst waiting I took the obligatory selfie.. looked weird… went back upstairs realizing I had forgotten to draw any eyebrows… back downstairs .. much better!

My lovely friend Matt had offered to take me this morning – the original plan was I was going to drive myself and Carl was going to walk up later with the kids to collect the car, but Matt wouldn’t hear of it and said he would take me. The mad fool was up for ungodly hour circuits classes anyway apparently. Now you cant be grumpy with Matt around cos even at 7am he is like tigger, on speed, in a really really good mood.

So off we trundled, more selfies and up to the admitting ward. Now its a bit rubbish and you cant have anyone stay with you on the ward till you go down. The admitting nurse spent ages going thru the list of numbers to call to check on my progress, that I was second on the list and due down about 10.30 and where I would go after the surgery. We grinned, neither of us wanting to break her spiel to tell her he was my friend. Later on she told me how lovely my husband was.

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And that was it – hugs and he went and I was led to a waiting room… then I felt sick!

People came in , but no one really spoke, just a polite smile as they came in and left again. My consultant came in and took me to a room. She went back through what surgery I was having, how it would be done, how long it would take and what not. If im totally honest I wasn’t really listening, zoned out I guess, all i remember is thinking omg her hair is amazing – she always had it up but today it was nearly at her waist! random!

She then got me a gown and drew all over me with a green sharpie – I laughed and asked if i should be worried when she said she was writing ANC/MX on one side and MX only on the other to remind her what side to do the nodes on.  I didn’t understand what the markings were, she explained the central one marked the mid point, and she did it by eye and then was very impressed when she measured it and was spot on. I also reminded her that I needed to know the weight for our fundraising. She thought it was a great idea and promised me she would let me know.

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I was taken by the nurse then to another room where they measured me for stockings – no sexy seamed ones for this 50’s chick – explaining the risks of DVT and that I would be given fragmin back on the ward. They went through my allergies, again I had to sign to say I understood what the surgery entailed, they put a tag on my bag, one on my wrist.. none on my toe thank god! The nurse gave me 2 paracetamol – explaining i would be given some now, pain killers in theatre and then on the ward, so that I was covered.. always makes me laugh considering the painkillers i normally take

Then a trip to the anesthetist who asked me how wide i could open my mouth (ooer!) and tip my head back and more form signing

And back to the waiting room to wait for someone to say it was time

A young theatre nurse came to collect me not long after – I couldnt tell you if it was near 10.30 – it certainly didnt feel like I had been waiting that long but my brain was pretty mush by now – it takes a lot of effort not to think you know! We walked to theatre, took a lot of doing not to run in the opposite direction… and i don’t run!!

I was taken into theatre and laid on the bed whilst they all pottered around. The anesthetist was a friend of a friend so small talk about her holiday helped me take my mind of the fact this was it. More double checking that I was fully aware of what was about to happen.  She explained that I would be given morphine now. As she put it in the cannula everything became fuzzy and strange. I remember her asking if it was kicking in and only being able to nod. She said they would be putting the mask on now.. and thats all I remember