May love and laughter light your days, and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours, wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world with joy that long endures.
May all life's passing seasons bring the best to you and yours!
~ Robert Frost


Welcome to my blog. This is my story of how I faced my risk of breast cancer, the decisions I made, the support I received and my week by week recovery from surgery. I chose to have a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy with immediate DIEP reconstruction at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston (March 2010). For more information on my 'Medical Team' please see tab above. I also have a wonderful circle of friends who have supported me throughout. They have provided us with lots of delicious meals and desserts. Many of those recipes are included above under "Feed the Flap" recipes. "Feed the Flap" is a term I coined when trying to increase my abdominal (fat) flap to ensure that I was a good candidate for the DIEP procedure. This was not something recommended by any medical professional, it was just something that made sense to me. I think it worked!! Feel free to join me on this journey and feel free to post comments.

Select the tabs on the left side marked Week 1, Week 2, Week 3..... to go immediately to the surgical/recovery part of this blog.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Day 2 - Pre Admission Testing

On Tuesday I met with the PS and his nurse. Although my appointment was for 8:45 we didn't leave his office until 11:45. The first hour was just waiting with my 'gown' on....waiting so long that I took a little nap on the table. I practiced laying down with my arms out straight to test my frozen shoulder. It appears that it shouldn't be a problem - even if it is in this position for 12+ hours.

For quite some time his nurse answered all my questions. I must say that my PS's nurse is the best I have ever seen. She was able to put my mind at ease, made it seem doable....she may have noticed from my questions that I am afraid of PAIN. I asked so many questions related to it, that it became quite funny. At some point I will include a FAQ section on my blog to serve as a reminder for me, but also as a helpful tool for others moving down this road.

When I asked how I would feel immediately after waking up in recovery. The response, "like you got hit by a car." or was it train? That freaked me out about as much as the possibility of losing a tooth when my ET tube comes out. In the end, she and the PS were very supportive, but also very clear as to what to expect. I was hoping to be the same size, but that won't happen unless I have more 'flap' to offer. Sooooo, I am working on 'feeding the flap' from now until March 28th.

Oh, Boston is such a lovely city this time of year. The buds were coming out. The sun was shining. We walked and walked and walked. Very nice. We also did a trial run for DH, who will be staying across town all week if he doesn't like sleeping on a cot in my room. He's afraid he might need back surgery if he sleeps too many nights on the cot. I was so surprised and happy that that was even an option. They prefer that their DIEP patients get a single room, so that's how it is possible to have DH in there with me.

At this point I am still pretty scared, mostly about the pain and a little bit about appearance. But tonight I will speak with a woman who had this surgery done last year who understands LCIS and the nature of 'elective' surgery.


rissawrites said...

I am sure you are scared. When do you actually have the surgery?

Stay strong. You are a wonderful role model for your girls!

myblip said...

Your post made me think of this coffee cup I found:

I can't lie - it does feel a lot like being hit by a truck - but the good thing about pain - it fades - ya know - it fades - and you can say goodbye to that HUGE cancer risk - which you know hurts a lot worse than this. You are stronger than you think you are, you CAN do this. I'm doing it. If I can do it, anyone can do it - because I have no pain threshold at all anymore, and I'm doing it. Maybe not always gracefully, but that's okay, right? You can do it too, you really can..


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