Sunday, March 06, 2016

Two Week Self Assessment

     It's actually been two and a half weeks since my bilateral mastectomy. Which is kind of hard to believe. The pain is so much less awful than at first. I can move around fairly well, but I still can't use my arms too much. No lifting things more than five pounds, which I sometimes do anyway. If I pull or push or twist, I feel it and regret it, so I'm trying to be careful.
     I saw Dr. Klausmeyer Friday. I almost drove myself, because even though you are not supposed to drive with drains, I saw Juanita, the kooky social worker, Wednesday while waiting for Carolyn to pick me up, and Juanita said I could drive. But I didn't sleep well Thursday night, so I was really tired Friday. So I chickened out and got a Lyft.
     I got to my appointment super early -- the Lyft came quickly and traffic wasn't bad. I was in the exam room by 9:30 for a 10:15 appointment. The 9:30 patient hadn't shown up, so I got that slot, which was nice. Dr. Klausmeyer took out my drains -- hallelujah!!!!!!!! She was going to actually give me my first saline injection to start pumping up my tissue expanders, but decided to let my skin heal for two more weeks. I was glad about that -- I don't think I'm ready for expansion yet. My skin is still super beat up and my wounds are gnarly. Dr. Klausmeyer gave me some cream to put on my wounds. It's usually used for burns. The nurse put a bunch of gauze in a biohazard bag for me, and gave me some paper tape, so I could make a dressing to put over the cream.
     I see Dr. Klausmeyer on March 18 for my first tissue expansion. That week is spring break for Emiko and Hideo. We are going to send them to spring break camp so that I don't have to worry about childcare that week while I see the oncologist on the 14th and Dr. Klausmeyer on the 18th.
     Emiko saw my boobs yesterday when I got out of the shower (an actual shower!!!). She had asked if she could see them, and I told her yes, but they were super scary looking, so it was up to her. She looked at them -- I showed her the stitches and explained that they wouldn't always look like this. She agreed that they were scary. Hideo walked by while I was showing Emiko, so Hideo saw them, too. He was upset and cried a little. I assured him that this was only temporary. He said that he was glad the cancer was out of me -- and that that was the main thing.
     I'm finding getting dressed a hassle, because I am a bit self-conscious about my boobettes. I am not completely flat, thanks to the tissue expanders, but I'm much flatter than I've been since hitting puberty. Emiko said I had the boobs of a teenager and the body of a grown woman. I have been wearing baggy tops and putting scarves on to try to hide my chest. I can pull tops over my head if they are stretchy, so I can wear baggy t-shirts around the house, but I've wearing button down shirts out in public.
     It is nice not having to wear a bra anymore. I bought a bunch of men's tank tops at Target yesterday. I was wearing some of Todd's, but thought I should get my own, since my wounds are a little oozy still, and I don't want to ruin his tanks. So I put the cream on my wounds, put gauze on top of the cream, and gently pull the tank top on.
     Emotionally, I think I am in pretty good shape, but I do think I need to find a support group that is a better match than the Kaiser one. The Kaiser group meets tomorrow night, but I don't think I will go. I will go to the orientation Tue morning for the support group that meets in Pasadena. Maybe it will be a better fit. It would be nice to meet people closer to my own age. We'll see.
     Guess that's all for now.

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