Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Drains, Expanders and the "N" Word
Today started out as a really good day. Kevan helped me get ready so we could head to Nashville for my first post-op visit with the plastic surgeon. It is amazing how long it takes to get me ready. The shower alone took us almost an hour because we have to work around the drains and I can't wash my own hair. Kevan does a great job though. I am so blessed to have him. I went almost 6.5 hours without having to take a pain pill. It felt great to not be dizzy, to feel normal, but to also not be in pain.
The good news is that I had 2 of my drains removed! Praise God! I only have 2 left. I have to say that this was VERY weird and a little painful when she removed them. I can't wait to have the other two out, but at the same time I'm not looking forward to the way it is done. Kevan held my hand and they really are removed in about 20 seconds, but it is something I hope I will never have to experience again once I'm done with the remaining two.
Each week I will go into the plastic surgeon and she will add saline to each tissue expander until we reach the desired size. Think Reese Witherspoon....NOT Pamela Anderson! There is a little magnetic area in the expander that helps her find the area where she needs to insert the needle and inject the saline. It is all a pretty cool invention for women like me who have to have a mastectomy but still want to look normal. Although, the explander is really uncomfortable and un-natural looking. Unfortunately, today, she said I was healing well, but not healed enough to have my first "fill". I was disappointed that she didn't do a fill, but I don't want to rush it if she doesn't feel I'm ready yet.
Now, there are two areas that are a little concerning that I need prayer specifically for. I feel guilty asking for prayer since I know so many are already praying for me and there is no way I can make up for all the prayers that have already been prayed over me and here I am asking for more prayers. First, my nipple. Yes, I said the "N" word. When I had my mastectomy last week I was a candidate for a skin and "nipple-sparing" mastectomy...this means I get to keep my own nipples and will not have to have them made surgically. One of them is looking really good. The other one does not have good color. I think my grandma in heaven cannot believe I am talking about nipples right now, but God asks us to pray about all things. So, please pray for this nipple to start responding well, receive the blood flow that it needs and that the color will start looking better. PLEASE!!! I know God can do a miracle and I could wake up tomorrow and it be just the way it needs to be.
Second, there is a place on my left breast where my skin is very thin. The expander, since it isn't full yet, is "rippling" and causing a place to form that could have potential to be worse. Please pray that the skin here will start to thicken and/or the expander would stop pressing so much in this area. We have to continue to watch this area to make sure it doesn't get worse.
Lastly, due to all of the antibiotics I'm taking, I've developed thrush. The doctor has given me a pill and a rinse that should help it go away. It doesn't hurt very much unless I drink something too cold or if I brush my teeth.