Wednesday was a long day. So much waiting. I arrived at 11:45, a tad early, so we expected having to wait a bit. At about 12:45 my pager went off. We had been watching the Food Network Channel- which is just all kinds of wrong when you haven't eaten or had anything to drink since 8 pm the night before. Rick and I were highly amused at the idea. I was all prepped in no time, as an OR sat waiting for me at 2. But then I heard Dr. Antoniuk was actually helping Dr. Bouton with another surgery. (Dr. Bouton is the one who did my first two surgeries with me.)
Soon Dr. A showed up to mark me and said they were getting the OR all set up for me. "It won't be long now," I thought.
Could I be any more wrong?
Sometime around 3:30, Dr. A came back to say, all of the surgical staff? Was no longer there. So they needed to put a new team together and it would take at least another hour. She was clearly not happy- but what can you do? So TWO hours later- they finally came to get me. They graciously offered Rick a free meal for the inconvenience of waiting so long.
I was alert and wide awake as they wheeled me into the OR. I scooted onto the table, observing everything around me. Oh how I wished I had my camera.
Then the mask went over my face and I was asked to take 5 big breaths.
And then the funniest thing happened.
The last part I remember hearing them say is- "Look! She has one earring still in her ear!"
I can't believe I managed to get 2 earrings out, but the third one? Apparently chemo brain helped me forget to even know I had that third one!
We all got a good laugh out of that. They taped it off for me…
And I was out.
But surprisingly, when they were done with the surgery- they told me I woke up in the OR and started talking right away. I'll be very curious to find out what I said!
I had a wonderful male nurse in the recovery room. He has a son who plays hockey at the squirt level, so we had plenty to talk about. He also very nicely answered all my questions, and had Rick come sit with me.
The biggest surprise was when Dr. Bouton peeked in to check on me!
At 9:30 they said they found a room for me. The hospital has been overflowing with patients, and getting a room is monumental.
But not only did I get a room- I got on THE floor- 2N.
Its a women's unit. And they had remodeled the rooms to try out various features and functions, as a trial run before they build the new hospital.
Seriously- it felt like a fancy hotel.
The bathroom was tiled. There was hardwood look to the floor. We had a large flat screen tv attached to a wall unit. The room was huge!
I felt so comfortable and had such good care.
But no matter sometimes, all the good, some of the hard stuff has to show up too.
My heart rate kept dropping, setting off alarms, at an alarming rate. It would go down to the 30's and then shoot back up to 100. From bradycardia I would shoot all the way up to tachycardia- neither of which is very comfortable.
I had also been instructed I had to sleep in a sitting up position.
So sleep eluded me that night.
But Dr. A came in early yesterday morning.
And I think because you all prayed so fervently for me- the surgery had gone smoothly! Plan A worked! She only had to move my pectoral muscle a little and then discovered she would not have to use any dermis at all. She used my own tissue to pull everything together. She said in surgical terms? I was boring!! I've never been so happy to hear that word used in regards to me. And as a parting gift? She collected a whole box of bandages for me to take home!
You should see my incision now. Much longer- from midsection of my chest all the way to my arm pit. Straight- no jagged edges- and closed with stitches, glue, and then clear tape over the top. It looks amazing.
I got a fancy new bra with velcro hooks that allow me to attache my JP drain to it.
The only thing I truly forgot to do - was find some clothes to wear that will cover the big bulge of the drain. I just need loose tops of some kind. I will have to look online maybe when I am up and around more. Or I am open to suggestions?
So yesterday I got to go home!
I slept and rested well. It wasn't until bed time last night that I truly began to feel the soreness/pain settle in. She warned me about this.
I have a pulling and tightness- a tender ache, all around my ribs and chest- reaching around to my back and down underneath my arm.
She said no driving, no lifting, no reaching, no nothing, with that arm.
So I'm mentally counting my gifts- they are so abundant- and saw me through yet another big moment of my life.
And the biggest gift? All the wonderful love and prayers streaming through to me on my phone yesterday! The strength, the fortitude it gives me is unsurpassed!
To all the new friends finding me on fb- I was so honored!
To the ones who sent gift cards for food, and the ones that brought food to our door- thank you!
It all helps! We're simply blown away by all the ways you continue to bless us so, 3 long years into my ride with cancer.
I can't wait to come visit my blogging friends to catch up soon!
But for now I'm off to rest and recover- to heal that wound because the summer is fleeting at best- and I don't want it to slip past me in any way.
"We shall steer safely through every storm, so long as our heart is right, our intention fervent, our courage steadfast, and our trust fixed on God."
- St. Francis De Sales