This time next week I will be in the operating room. Thanks to a cancellation, I was moved up from April 25th to February 11th. I’m excited but also nervous. Although this surgery won’t be as intense as the last, it is still a major procedure and could have complications like I experienced last time. Not only are they removing my tissue expanders and putting in the silicone implants, they also have to deal with the hematoma from the last surgery, address the big bulge under my left arm and locate and remove the surgical clip that is floating around the side of my left “foob”. I am also hoping that when they slit me open that they can use a bit more finesse when sewing me up so that the scars although very large, will be a little less frankensteinish! I mean its bad enough that I will have to live with two long scars across both sides of my silicone mounds, but it would at least be nice if they weren’t as grotesque as they look now. Trust me, it’s hard enough looking in the mirror everyday to see that reflection….a figure of a woman I don’t even recognize anymore but will have to get to know; as my old self is long gone.
I was working on my lists of things I need to buy and prep before the surgery; things I will need for my recovery, when my phone rang. It was my surgeon’s office. Actually, it was the office of the surgeon who will be assisting my surgeon. According to the nurse, he was hand-picked by my surgeon. I guess that’s a good thing…but it also means that I am a “practice” case. Someone for the new guy to learn on. I’m sure he is more than capable, but given my history of “if something is going to go wrong, it will go wrong with me”, I’d really rather have my “seasoned” surgeon working on me. I have no choice in this matter, so I won’t dwell on it. Or at least I will try not to. Anyway, his office called to say there had been a change in my surgery schedule. My heart sank. Oh god, please don’t tell me that it was all a mistake and I have to wait until April as previously booked. I could barely breathe waiting to hear the rest of message.
” We had you scheduled to arrive at the hospital at 10am with your surgery booked for 12:30. Someone else is now scheduled in that time slot.”
Here it was. The bad news I was dreading. I felt like a five year old being told that Santa wasn’t coming and Christmas was cancelled.
“Now we don’t need you to arrive until noon and your surgery will happen sometime around 2:30. You’ll be given confirmation of the new times at your pre-op appointment on Friday.”
What a relief. I am still scheduled for a week today. Believe it or not, this surgery is considered “day surgery” which means they will discharge me after a few hours in recovery. It really is incredible that patients are expected to leave and fend for themselves after such an invasive procedure. I actually watched a video of the surgery on YouTube last week so I could see for myself what I will have to endure. It ain’t pretty but I am really hoping that once these horrendous tissue expanders have been removed I can get back to some semblance of normalcy…and a lot less pain.
As I look at the clock it’s 3:30pm. At this time next week I will be on the operating table having what I hope is my last procedure. It will take several weeks again to recover but there is an end in sight and that end is getting closer by the day.
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.