One of the biggest aids in my recovery has been my menagerie of pillows. I have my “chest” pillow, as seen here, that travels everywhere with me. It acts as a chest protector, arm elevator and all round comfort pillow for me. I have two small heart shaped pillows that I put under my arms to help with support against all the swelling and I have a flannel neck pillow to support my head when trying to sleep sitting up. In order to sleep upright, I have a series of five memory foam wedges that I bought online that create my sleeping pod. Two large wedges create a back and neck support so that I can sit/sleep in a somewhat upright position, another tubular pillow supports my neck and two other wedges go under my knees to support my legs and keep the strain off my lower back. On either side of me I have a stack of pillows that support my arms as I sleep…or at least try to. Bedtime…or nap time, is quite a production. It reminds me of making forts in bed with my daughter when she was little. I am so packed in and surrounded by pillows its like I’m in a cocoon. ( I prefer that visual to the reference to a “coffin” as one person made). Once I am packed in tight for the night, that’s it. I’m stuck. God help me if I had to escape quickly for anything. It’s a good thing I don’t have a weak bladder!! I have a bed rail on one side too. It helps hold the stack of pillows to my right and gives me something to grip when I do try to get out of bed unassisted.
My nights are long as I wake frequently. I can’t roll over or readjust myself into another sleeping position as any one else would. I am in one position all night surrounded by my wall of pillows and weighed down with blankets. My bedroom has become the hub of the house. That’s where I spend most of my time. That’s where all my medications are laid out and organized. That’s where all the charts that monitored my drain tubes and now keep track of my swelling are displayed on a table in the corner. The bedroom is where I receive visitors and people gather to watch tv or movies in the evening.
And it’s the bedroom that my dog has to come to when she wants a belly rub. I am much more mobile now but for the first two weeks I never left my bedroom other than to use the washroom. Now I can venture downstairs and even outside to enjoy a shady seat in the garden. My pills have been cut back to half but my pillows are still with me day and night. They protect me. They support me. They comfort me. So the next time something ails you…try a “pill”ow. I highly recommend their affect.
President of As You Like It Marketing & Communications Inc. Award winning speaker and author. Breast cancer fighter and blogger. I’m sharing my journey…the good, the bad and the ugly. Hoping to help anyone else that has been touched by breast cancer be it you or someone you know or love.