I’m learning rather quickly that what I have planned for how this is all going to go down means absolutely bubkis in all of this. So here what was supposed to happen:
- Surgery Dec 20, 2013
- Approximately 2 weeks later, I’d be feeling pouty and sore, but I have it all worked out to go into the office where I have been granted an additional desktop computer. 1 for work, 1 for home. I’ll nary miss a minute of all the social media drama and action.
- I will spend the next week or so slowly building up to regular business hours while simultaneously determining what my chemo regiment will be and determing my very orderly chemo schedule.
- I will begin chemo. I will allow myself approximately 2, no let’s say 3 days to be kind to myself, to feel sick, then back to run some hours in the office. Not too many. I’m not a complete nutter. Just start with 4. Then work the 3rd week before my next round a regular office schedule.
Cancer. That’s what happened. First, the mild depression the first week after surgery that the pain, the pill popping, the weakness, drains, aches, pains, stitching, oh-my-god-when-can-I-take-a-shower, day after day with no end in site. I was not prepared for the mere fact that I could wake up the next day and not feel at all better. Not one bit.
Finally, after you will take anything as confirmation that you’re getting better, I was ready to brave the office and see someone, anyone, other than my family. (Sorry. Love to you all and for all you’re doing, but you know it’s true.) I finally had 2 of my 4 drains out and was ready to get up and around. My poor children spent their Christmas Day watching me sit in a chair in a haze, barely able to fake-enjoy it for their sake. I woke up that morning with a huge increase in pain and stiffness, ready to rip the tissue expanders out with my bare hands. I called the office and have the best nurses ever. I explained clearly that this makes no sense. I have had 2 significant surgeries with my children and at the end of 2 weeks you’re up and around. Kim did all she could not to laugh at me while she patiently explained that c-sections are quite different. I had just had pieces of my body removed, and between weeks 3-8 the severed nerve endings start regenerating. This, it seems, is all quite common and a positive sign. Back to narcotics land we go. Drains pumping, no driving, napping in mid-day, and you definitely don’t want me on social media sites on Lortab.
Monday, bloody Monday
After a strong week at home, the pain subsides and I finally get the other drains out. Ah ha! Ready to implement said plan. I feel pretty good. I’d say cocky even. I’m going to shower, with no adults around and alone in the house with my 4 year old. Getting out of the shower I am inspecting the incision on the cancer side (right) where we have been nursing some soft tissue that is still really mad it doesn’t have the former blood supply and isn’t sure it wants to continue to stay with me. While I’m looking down and pulling gently on my skin
*Graphic Content Warning*
my itty bitty little booby pops like a zit, squirting bloody fluid 12″ in front of me. When the gushing pressure subsides, it turns into a slow tidal wave of the stuff, pouring all over my bathroom. Confusion and total panic set in. I grab towels to apply pressure, as my flight attendant training clearly says you’re supposed to do while pouring fluid out of your body. As I stand in the bathroom I realize it reminds me of a scene out of some bad horror movie. While I’m bleeding through the towels, I text my poor sister who just got off a plane from London to hurry, because I think I’m dying. OK, not really dying. But I did tell her I’m home alone with Hannah (the 4 year old), still unable to drive, and I don’t want her to walk in. It all worked out just fine, but just two days before my first chemo and I suddenly have a new drain, which equals a new hole in my body.
The moral of this story?
I don’t really have one, sorry. I could give you some lemon analogy, but so far that’s crap. It’s drugs, naps, tears, watching the kids from afar, and driving my poor hubby to the brink of near insanity. But I do plan to go to work this week.