Posts from the ‘reconstruction’ Category

Frankenlefty has left the building.

Or will have by 8 am tomorrow.  Same problem as last time.  Infected skin, no bacterial growth in cultures.  They took about 200 ml of fluid out of frankenlefty this morning.  Brought it down in size from a freakish stripper boob to a normal stripper boob.  Can’t tell you how much better that feels.  It had actually started to migrate to the right so I truly would have been uniboobed.  PS says I stil have options.  I have to wait another 3 to 6 months to stabilize and we can work up a new plan.  Maybe one that doesn’t involve implants, depending on how frankenlefty looks without the expander.  That’s fine by me.

I have to admit there is just a tiny part of me that is glad to see it gone.  It’s been ridiculous, as I’ve mentioned before. I have to actually haul the thing up and out the window to reach things in a drive thru.  Definitely not going to miss that.  I will also be able to sleep on my left (once the drains are out.  Again.) without feeling uncomfortable.

Oh and I’ll have drains for Halloween.  I figure I can go as a Breast Cancer Awareness Borg.

I am 1 of 8.

Get your mammograms.

Resistance is futile.

The Waiting Place

In Dr. Seuss’s Oh the Places You’ll Go, he talks about the Waiting Place.  That’s sort of where I feel I am these days.

I had to go back to the doctors this week after I noticed a red spot growing on the underside of frankenlefty.  On Saturday, it started peeling.  I have to admit it was very tempting to just break down then.  For those of you who’ve been following, peeling was the beginning of the end for frankenrighty.  But I didn’t.  I made the appointments Monday morning and have dutifully gone to see both docs.  I can tell that Infectious Disease doc is trying to be positive but he’s worried.  Plastic surgeon is stumped and frustrated.  PS took some fluid today and is trying to see if it will grow anything.  (Remember that frankenrighty never grew anything until it was removed.)

I’m trying to stay neutral (positive but realistic).  Starting another round of Bactrim.  I seriously can’t believe after 3 1/2 months of antibiotics that any bacteria could possible grow in my body.  But apparently one is.

So I wait.

Apparently,

Pamela Anderson (Lee?  Not Lee?  What IS her name now?) is donating her boobs for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  And I was the lucky recipient of one of them.  Yep.  Frankenlefty is swelling.  At first I thought I was just being clumsy.  And I am.  BUT not to the frequency at which I have been abusing Frankenlefty.  Running into walls.  Shutting it in car doors.  Regular doors.  Doors are generally bad.  So I figure, it’s growing.  It looks huge.  It feels HUGE.

When I went to the plastic surgeons for our weekly tete a tete, the nurse who took me to the room said something to the effect of “Holey Moleg!  (J’s version of Holy Moly!) which made me think that she, too, had noticed it’s increased size.  Plastic surgeon looked at it and said in his usual dry humor, “Well.  I think we’re done expanding.”  He thinks there might be fluid there but we’re being very cautious about it because of what happened to Frankenrighty.

Saw the infectious disease doctor yesterday and he is cautiously optimistic that the antibiotic is working.  I’m learning not to get my hopes up.  I’m trying not to be negative about it, just neutral.  Reconstruction is severely impeding my quality of life.  I can’t volunteer for anything but food at L or J’s school because I never know when I’m going in for surgery.  I’ve had so many, I couldn’t remember them all when they wanted my history for the colonoscopy.  How sad is that?

I’m also having trouble remembering things.  Worse than usual.  I’m hoping it’s stress.

Wait.  What was I writing about?

Grins.

Sorely lacking the funny.

Plastic surgeon sent me to an infectious disease specialist today.  There is a red spot on frankenlefty.  They’re putting me back on Bactrim (started Levaquin yesterday) but I can tell they’re trying to prepare me.  I think there’s a good chance frankenlefty’s going to fail.

I can’t find anything funny to say about that.

But give me a couple days.

Drainless with a side of itchy

Sorry to keep some of you in suspense about my drain.  I’m sure much sleep was lost over it.  (I wonder if someone will ever design a sarcasm font.  It would be helpful.)  They took it out on Monday.

In fact, I’m full of all kinds of good news this week:

1. Drain is gone

2.  Infection is looking better, so I might get to do a one stage surgery next time instead of two (short version: no expanders, straight to implants)

3.  For better or for worse, I’ve reached my out of pocket expenses for the year so everything from now til the end of December is 100% covered.  I’m really hoping to get that one stage surgery in under the wire.

4.  I was told I have a beautiful colon.  How many people can say that?

5.  I don’t have to drink Gatorade with Miralax for 10 years (maybe 5 with my cancer history).  It’s awful.  I mean really awful.  Lemon lime Gatorade is bad enough but the Miralax turns it into a syrupy mess that just horrid to swallow.

I do itch though.  On the frankenlefty side.  Which is so weird, because I have no feeling there.  I actually run into things with my frankenboob and can’t feel a darn thing.  Shut it in the car door.  Really, I did.  Nothing.  Except the itchiness.  That I can’t scratch.  Because there’s no feeling there.  It would be funny if it weren’t happening to me.  😛

Ok.  It’s a little bit funny.

Alfie

After last weeks meeting with the plastic surgeon, I was resigned to the fact that my drain was going to be with me for some time.  So I named it Alfie.  Mostly because I was watching the movie Alfie on tv (the new one with Jude Law)  (and isn’t he pretty by the way?)  But just like fickle Alfie in the movie, my drain decided also have commitment issues.

Last night I noticed that the stitches which hold my drain in had broken free and my drain was starting to come out on its own.  Basically this makes a pretty inconsistent seal which causes the drain to leak where it’s attached to me.  (Awesome.)  I called the doctor and he said I could either take it out on my own (yikes) or wait until Monday.  So I’ve now taped the tubing so it can’t work it’s way out and am waiting until Monday.

And as a bonus prize, sometimes, when I raise my arm, it squeaks.  The drain, not my arm.

Back to the drawing board.

Plastic surgeon had to take the whole thing out.  Turns out the expander was infected big time.  The alloderm, on the other hand, did it’s job beautifully and is now incorporated into my own tissue.  This is good.  It might give me some different options down the road for reconstruction.  (I.E. Not just a lat flap.)   And yes.  I said down the road.  I need 4 to 6 months to heal.  4 to 6 months of once again being lopsided (though this time it’s the other direction and I don’t have to wear a bra.  Don’t laugh.  I take my perks where I can get them.)

Frankly, I’m not in the best of moods.  On top of this, we just lost another girl over at YSC.   Too young.  Too soon.  One of too many this summer.

So I’m going to share with you something that made me feel better.

Edited to add: I wish I could take credit for the following funny, but it was one of those viral emails that makes it round and round the internet.  I realize I didn’t label this very well, and don’t want people to think it is mine.  🙂  One of my fellow YSC’ers posted it on the YSC bulliten board.  So I wish I was that funny, but, alas, I am not.

Random thoughts from people our age…

More often than not, when someone is telling me a story all I can think about is that I can’t wait for them to finish so that I can tell my own story that’s not only better, but also more directly involves me.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.

I don’t understand the purpose of the line, “I don’t need to drink to have fun.” Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they’ve invented the lighter?

Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you’re going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you’re crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.

I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to nap when I was younger.

Is it just me, or are 80% of the people in the “people you may know” feature on Facebook people that I do know, but I deliberately choose not to be friends with?

Do you remember when you were a kid, playing Nintendo and it wouldn’t work? You take the cartridge out, blow in it and that would magically fix the problem. Every kid in America did that, but how did we all know how to fix the problem? There was no internet or message boards or FAQ’s. We just figured it out. Today’s kids are soft.

There is a great need for sarcasm font.

Sometimes, I’ll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the f*** was going on when I first saw it.

I think everyone has a movie that they love so much, it actually becomes stressful to watch it with other people. I’ll end up wasting 90 minutes shiftily glancing around to confirm that everyone’s laughing at the right parts, then making sure I laugh just a little bit harder (and a millisecond earlier) to prove that I’m still the only one who really, really gets it.

How the heck are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

The only time I look forward to a red light is when I’m trying to finish a text or finish applying my makeup.

A recent study has shown that playing beer pong contributes to the spread of mono and the flu. Yeah, if you suck at it.

Was learning cursive really necessary?

LOL has gone from meaning, “laugh out loud” to “I have nothing else to say”.

I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

Answering the same letter three times or more in a row on a Scantron test is absolutely petrifying.

My brother’s Municipal League baseball team is named the Stepdads. Seeing as none of the guys on the team are actual stepdads, I inquired about the name. He explained, “Cuz we beat you, and you hate us.” Classy, bro.

Whenever someone says “I’m not book smart, but I’m street smart”, all I hear is “I’m not real smart, but I’m imaginary smart”.

How many times is it appropriate to say “What?” before you just nod and smile because you still didn’t hear what they said?

I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent a dick from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, my peeps!

Every time I have to spell a word over the phone using ‘as in’ examples, I will undoubtedly draw a blank and sound like a complete idiot. Today I had to spell my boss’s last name to an attorney and said “Yes that’s G as in…(10 second lapse) ..ummm… Goonies”

What would happen if I hired two private investigators to follow each other?

While driving yesterday I saw a banana peel in the road and instinctively swerved to avoid it…thanks Mario Kart.

MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

I find it hard to believe there are actually people who get in the shower first and THEN turn on the water.

Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.

I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired.

Bad decisions make good stories.

Whenever I’m Facebook stalking someone and I find out that their profile is public I feel like a kid on Christmas morning who just got the Red Ryder BB gun that I always wanted. 546 pictures? Don’t mind if I do!

Is it just me or do high school girls wear skimpier and skimpier clothing every year?

If Carmen San Diego and Waldo ever got together, their off spring would probably just be completely invisible.

Why is it that during an ice-breaker, when the whole room has to go around and say their name and where they are from, I get so incredibly nervous? Like I know my name, I know where I’m from, this shouldn’t be a problem….

You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you’ve made up your mind that you just aren’t doing anything productive for the rest of the day.

Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after DVDs? I don’t want to have to restart my collection.

There’s no worse feeling than that millisecond you’re sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

“Do not machine wash or tumble dry” means I will never wash this ever.

I hate being the one with the remote in a room full of people watching TV. There’s so much pressure. ‘I love this show, but will they judge me if I keep it on? I bet everyone is wishing we weren’t watching this. It’s only a matter of time before they all get up and leave the room. Will we still be friends after this?’

I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Dammit!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voicemail. What’d you do after I didn’t answer? Drop the phone and run away?

I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

When I meet a new guy, I’m terrified of mentioning something he hasn’t already told me but that I have learned from some light internet stalking.

I like all of the music in my iTunes, except when it’s on shuffle, then I like about one in every fifteen songs in my iTunes.

Why is a school zone 20 mph? That seems like the optimal cruising speed for pedophiles.

As a driver I hate pedestrians, and as a pedestrian I hate drivers, but no matter what the mode of transportation, I always hate cyclists.

Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.

It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood.

I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

Even if I knew your social security number, I wouldn’t know what do to with it.

Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey – but I’d bet my ass that everyone can find and push the Snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time every time…

My 4-year old son asked me in the car the other day “What would happen if you ran over a ninja?” How the heck do I respond to that?

It really pisses me off when I want to read a story on CNN.com and the link takes me to a video instead of text.

I wonder if cops ever get mad at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit.

I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lites than Kay.

The other night I ordered takeout, and when I looked in the bag, saw they had included four sets of plastic silverware. In other words, someone at the restaurant packed my order, took a second to think about it, and then estimated that there must be at least four people eating to require such a large amount of food. Too bad I was eating by myself. There’s nothing like being made to feel like a fatty before dinner.

Posted over at YSC.
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