Looking Back On My Journey…One Week After My Bilateral Mastectomy

Looking back to my one week checkup (3 1/2 years ago) with the surgeon after he whacked off my Boobies, I gave him kudos for making a beautifully flat incision. He was slightly amused at my flattery.

Of course, I admonished him for passing up an opportunity to remove fat from my belly! He had a snarky comeback about plastic surgeons making big bucks doing that.

Doc said we could remove the two drain tubes (good) and said he was sending me to the plastic surgeons office for that.

Off to the Plastic Surgeon…4 stop lights, and a lot of jerking in the car (you’d think I was riding in the car with a beginner and not a veteran). Just as we go to drive in the driveway, I remember how bad the bump is…I lean forward and hold my chest…OMG!

I go in to the plastic surgeon’s office, greeted by the sweetest girls ever. Go back into a room and wait for only a minute. And in he walks…”Beall said these are ready to come out.” I’m like: “Yep, I’m hoping you will agree.” He looks at my tracking of fluid collected for the week, “we can take them out. Leann will get those out in just a few minutes for you.” I reply, “Are you not any good at this?” He answers, ” I’m here to make you look better…I do not want to hurt you!” I start getting a little worried.

The first one felt like a snake crawled out of my chest; totally weird but not painful. The second one however…OMG! I almost throat punched her! (Bad) The look on my hubby’s face was priceless. He refused to take pictures of this auspicious occasion so you’ll have to use your imagination.

Once the color came back into my face and I began to breathe again, I was tightly wrapped in an ace bandage. (Bad) I’m told it will help with swelling and drainage but it’s not comfortable. I hate it. It’s a constant reminder of my ugly nasty crappy cancer.

The drive back to the house (4 blocks) totally wore me out. I think pothole appeared out of nowhere to sabotage me. And he had to hit the brakes 10 times, jerking me around the car, trying to dodge the holes in the road.

At least I was able to take a real shower and wash my hair. And when I came out of the shower, there on the countertop was a Venti Bold with Cream from Starbucks…that’s the trick to feeling better! A good shower and good coffee!

Then off to the Oncologist. (One day…three doctors) I had already made the decision not to take chemo. Chemo-therapy has terrible success rates…about 3%. My ugly nasty crappy cancer was not in the lymph nodes, so chemo won’t be necessary, although it is often recommended as a preventative.

I’m told I will need hormone therapy since my ugly nasty crappy cancer was estrogen and progesterone positive. I would need to take it for 5 years, maybe 10. The side affects have me taking a step back and reconsidering whether it’s right for me to take the risk.

I don’t have hot flashes;

I have power surges!

I feel I should be able to burn fat off this body with the heat I generate.

The loss of estrogen can influence cognitive function, including verbal memory and fluency; can increase the likelihood of depression, anxiety, and sleep disturbances; and can lead to the loss of interest in sex. (This reason alone has me hesitating!)

Anti-hormone therapy also causes pain in the joints, and it steals estrogen from your bones, Osteopenia turns to Osteoporosis. There is more evidence that it increases the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.

God created us as a fine tuned instrument, each part, cell, organs and hormones all working together, having an important role. It kinda freaks me out to consider what would happen without any hormones.

At this point I’ve started to think of this ugly nasty crappy cancer as more of a chronic disease. It is not finished with me just because my boobies were whacked off. I’m not through dealing with it. In fact, the odds of it coming back is out there taunting me.

I’ll be having genetic testing soon. If I’m HER1 or HER2 I’ll be looking at another surgery to remove my ovaries. And another talk of Chemo. This gene triggers the growth of cancer cells and I’d be watched even more closely.

Ugly Nasty Crappy cancer has taken over my life for at least the next 5 to 10 years.

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