Tag Archives: surgery

Sunday update

I’m hurrying to write this before my dilaudid ‘kicks in’ and I become illiterate once again.

I think I got an infection in my breast yesterday — it was hot to the touch, slightly swollen, and red, like sunburned. We called my surgeon (they have a service that puts you through to him directly if he can take the call — very cool) and he put me back on an antibiotic. Took two last night, along with a lot of visualization, and I’m noticeably better today. Whew. (The only ‘fix’ for an infection with a breast implant is to remove the implant and wait several months for the tie to heal, and then re-insert the implant. NO WAY.)

I’ve been feeling a lot of pain, even with dilaudid, and so I’ve been using the hypnotic WAV my psych. taped at our last session. It’s a profound difference. I’m starting to alter it to add in ‘you will feel less pain each day as you heal completely’ because the dilaudid runs out tomorrow and I already know that OTC drugs are not going to work.

But I will be so glad to get off the narcotic. I like the lack of pain, but hate the side effects of fuzzy thinking, lack of motivation, and physicalย  . . .ย  blockage. (I don’t want to say more, but its the most common side effects of narcotics, ok?)

I’m looking forward to going for a walk, maybe even two today. That will be a big step forward. Ambien is working to help me sleep, so I’m back to 8+ hours/night, thank goodness. Soon normality will return. At least for a while.

Surgery v2, The Next Day

My surgery went very well . . . I think. I was unconscious for most of it. ๐Ÿ™‚ My anesthesiologist was incredibly good. And I must sayย  that if you or any member of your family needs reconstructive work done in this area (cosmetic or otherwise) this place is highly recommended.

Yesterday and now today I *am* in a lot of pain, but that’s just a part of what needs to happen. I won’t know how I really *feel* until next week. I have a followup on Tuesday morning — and NO SHOWER until then!

I was taken into the OR at about 8am, and John was brought back to see me in the recovery room about 11:30am. Not too much later we were at Starbucks having a latte and egg sandwich on pumpernickel while my ‘scrips got filled. Home ’round 1pm and then I went to sleep for a few hours while John took Sasha swimming.

VERY different from the first procedure. Of course, I was on such heavy meds the 1st time that I didn’t hurt at all, and that’s not the case now. Oh well. The pain will pass.

OK, enough typing. I’m off to read a book.

Thanks for the well wishes

Waves Gently

Hi everyone, Lisa here. *waves gently*

I’m briefly online, checking in on a few things (gosh golly, I made it until TUESDAY!), downloading email, and then I’ll take some time to read and respond.

Y’all have been wonderful and I am doing VERY well. Still can’t raise my arms above my head, and I’m keeping my left arm tucked tight most of the time. But pain meds (dilaudinum?) are working well, I’m eating gorgeous food (broiled salmon and broccoli last night, shrimp scampi tonight), getting lots of sleep, and watching lots of movies. (yay Netflix.)

More news coming as my coherency rate increases. Keep the energy flowing — it is WORKING.

More Lisa Updates

Heigh ho, J here,

First of all, my apologies for a slow update. I actually thought that I had pointed out my twitter feed, where I have been updating regularly, but as you can see I actually didn’t (until now). Sorry about that.

Fortunately, no news has indeed been good news. Lisa came through her surgery with flying colors. Both surgeons (the one who performed the mastectomy and the reconstructive surgeon) gave excellent reports right after their respective portions. Lisa was into her visitor-accessible room just after 8PM on Thursday. She spent all day Friday at the hospital, making good progress mentally coming around but not feeling up to walking yet. Saturday morning, her mother and I arrived in the AM to find her sitting up with her feet on the floor, pants on, reading catalogs, having finished her bacon & egg sandwich (!). She was done with being in the hospital, and those of you who know Lisa know the look that was on her face. ๐Ÿ˜€

So she’s been home since Saturday ~11AM and doing just fine, all things considered. The meds keep her mellow, but we’ve tweaked the dosages just a bit (less of the narcotic pain-killer, but more frequent) and she doesn’t get truly woozy. We’ve also added Tylenol to the mix with the surgeon’s blessing, and that seems to be filling in the little “gaps” in the pain management. She gets up and moves around on her own, although she still mostly stays in bed.

The extra bit of good news that we’re trying not to be tooooo excited about just yet is that the biopsy of her lymph node that occurred during surgery was negative, which indicates that there is no further cancer to be concerned with. The reason we’re not hopping up and down yet is that that was a “rough” test that has 85% accuracy; they then send to a lab for the more thorough test, which comes back in 7-10 days. The rough test is still pretty accurate, but since the chance is still out there we’re trying not to get ahead of ourselves.

Thanks to everyone for their thoughts, prayers, energy, and positive messages. It was amazing, actually, how my new smartphone (I’ve been completely phone-less in the cell phone era until ~a month ago) let me update people and share their sentiments with Lisa while we were in the hospital. Anyway, I’ll post again in a day or so as things develop, and don’t be surprised if you hear from Lisa before too long; she already couldn’t help herself from sitting briefly at her desk and checking mail. ๐Ÿ™‚

How Lisa is Doing So Far

Hi, Lisa’s “J” here. She’s been a champ so far. She’s been admitted, and had one serious treatment so far – a radioactive dye was injected so that pictures of her lymph nodes could be taken. “Amusingly” she had differing reports on the procedure. One nurse said “this will be the most painful thing you go through today” and another said “it won’t hurt a bit.” Fortunately, the latter turned out mostly to be the case; save for a little pain, all was well.

Now she’s back in a pre/post-OP holding room. She has a visit from the anesthesiologist coming up, and assuming no delays (not that safe a bet, really) she’ll be in the surgery process in an hour. I’ll tell you more when I know it. In any case, if you’re disposed towards sending positive energy her way, an hour from now would be a good time to start. She’ll appreciate it, and heaven knows I will.

Cheers,

J

EDIT TO ADD: she’s on surgery now and will be for another couple hours. All quiet on the western front.

last thoughts

As I ready myself for sleep, I find myself calmer, but still uncertain.

I’ll write more on this later, but I have been ‘sitting with’ the idea that this process is very much like that of being pregnant, and giving birth.(Which is why the ‘abandoned but still having the child imagery from J. yesterday was so particularly apt in the moment.) Like any soon to be mother, I have fears that can not be allayed.

Laffingkat said it well in her comment to me yesterday: I may never be sure, but waiting won’t help. Labor will be induced tomorrow, the only way out is through.

I feel strong, and supported. So many of you have stepped forward, old friends and comrades have written to say they will be thinking of me. Magic is being worked, prayers sent, and positive vibes sent. I am in as good a place as possible, and I feel it.

The next post should be from J. to let y’all know what he knows, tomorrow night or Friday morning. I don’t know when I’ll be online again (certainly not until I’m no longer on serious pain meds — although y’all might be heartily amused by my ramblings. ๐Ÿ™‚

Until then — thank you. Thank you for your generosity, your care, and your compassion. My friends and loved ones have proven their worth and I am humbled and ennobled all at once.

I feel blessed, and that is a very good way to be in this moment, in this time.

I finally lost my cool

Yesterday was a kind of a breakthrough day. Without going into *all* of the details, suffice it to say that the ‘pre-op’ meeting I had scheduled with my plastic surgeon wasn’t what I thought it would be, and I still had to go to the hospital for my bloodwork. Moreover, even though I had a 2pm appt., we didn’t get brought back until 2:45, and then we waited for another 15+ minutes — in an EXAM room. One chair, a padded table, and a sink in a cabinet. J. was forced to lean up against a wall.

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