Monday, March 3, 2014

Post surgery update

Hi friends!  I wanted to update you all on what's happening with me.  I am 17 days post surgery and doing really well.  I have been doing everything my Dr. has been telling me to do (which is basically doing nothing).

I stayed in the hospital for 2 nights after surgery.  I was still having a quite a bit of pain on the day after surgery so they kept me for another night which I was thankful for.  I had surgery on February 14th (Happy Valentine's day to me) and went home on the 16th.  I came home to a recliner that has become my best friend over the last two weeks.  It used to be my grandma's and is one of those super cool chairs that lifts you up to a standing position and also reclines you to an almost laying down position.  It has come in very handy.

The best news after surgery came late on the night I came home when my breast surgeon called us (from Israel...he left the day after my surgery for a trip) and told us that all the pathology from my surgery came back clear.  That is what we were expecting but it felt so good to get that news!!!  Praise be to God!

My parents had the girls the first few days after surgery.  I needed someone to take care of me too so my good friend Amy came in from Mississippi to help me out.  She brought me food, helped me with my medications, gave me a bath with baby wipes, emptied my drains for me (I had four of them when I first came home), ran errands, and just hung out with me.  She stayed for 4 days and it was so helpful.  Thank you Amy - love you so much!

My mom had a trip planned before any of this cancer business happened so she had to leave a few days after my surgery.  So, my in laws came to stay with us and help out with the girls.  They were here for 10 days and were very helpful.  They took the girls to school and to all of their normal activities.  They also helped me out by doing laundry, dishes, etc.  It's so hard to ask for help.  This whole experience of cancer has made me so much better about joyfully accepting help.  People are bringing us meals every other night which is fantastic and so appreciated!

I spent the first week after surgery pretty much in my chair.  I would get up every 90 minutes or so as ordered by my Dr. to avoid blood clots.  I went to the Dr. 6 days after surgery and got 2 of my 4 drains out. It was nice but I was really wanting all of them out.  The Dr. said that if I continued to be good and not do anything, I could get them out the following Monday.  That weekend, I did nothing.  The more you are up and doing things, the more your drains will fill up with fluid and you will delay getting them out.  So, Monday, I called with my drain outputs and they told me to come in to get my drains out!  So, 10 days after surgery, I had all 4 out.  I was ecstatic.  I was told to expect to have them in for 2-3 weeks so this was a major triumph!  Having drains is disgusting, uncomfortable, and annoying.  I will avoid telling you the nasty details but just take my word for it.  You don't want drains.  Gross!

After getting my drains out, I was able to be a bit more comfortable.  I started getting up a little longer each day.  By Thursday (13 days after surgery), I got up and went up to my office and sat at my desk all day. Different chair but a change of scenery and I was able to catch up on some things I hadn't been able to do.  My in-laws left on Friday and my dad came to get the girls so I could rest over the weekend.  That is what I did and I am feeling really good today.  I am no longer taking any pain medications (I didn't even need ibuprofen today), was able to unload the dishwasher today, do 2 loads of laundry, and get a regular shirt on (not a button up).  Small things that feel like big victories!  I'm currently sitting at my desk catching up on both of my blogs and working on Julianne's slide show (her 6th birthday is Wednesday).  I'm venturing out tomorrow to go to the dentist (I haven't been out of the house in a week).  My mom is going to drive me because I am still not allowed to drive until Friday (even though I think I could).

Life is slowly returning to normal and this week I have an appointment at the cancer center for my Herceptin treatment.  I have not missed that place in the last 3 weeks.  Not really looking forward to going back there but it's got to be done.  I'll see my plastic surgeon on Thursday for another post-op check and hopefully get cleared to drive and resume some normal activities.

Thank you to all of you who have been praying for me over the last few weeks.  I am so blessed with the people in my life that are covering me in prayer.  It is working.  I'm nearing the end of this journey.  Thank you for being a part of it!  Blessings to you all!