POST PUBLISHING EDIT FOR CLARITY: Dr. Goddess is not the Doc that did the biopsy. She is the doctor that did the mammogram diagnosis and then the wire location procedure. Dr. Ouch is the one that did the biopsy. She was perfectly nice, but OW.
Worrying about the whole thing was indeed worse than the actual surgery was. The wire location was done by the same doctor-we will call her Dr. Goddess. It turns out that she is the one that found the cancer on my initial mammogram. She is the one that saved my life. Once she did the numbing agent and then two shots of lidocaine the worst of the day was over. I did have a trippy wire sticking out of my breast, but it was like a monofilament line or smaller. I just laid on a regular exam bed and it was NOT as hard as the biopsy. I didn’t have to have my breast in between a table mammogram machine. So far the biopsy was the worst thing. I don’t even have a dressing on my surgery wound. It’s sutured inside and glued on top.
For sure it is this evening it is a train wreck of a bruise and there is a scar in a crescent moon shape NOT along my nipple. More on that later.
Then I went to phlebotomy to get a chem 8 done, and one of my students’ mom from last year was working on the floor. She didn’t take my blood, but reassured me that I was gonna be just fine. That was very reassuring. <3 She and the other phlebotomist patted me and gave me love. After that I went to the breast boutique and got myself my two insurance covered compression bras for post lumpectomy. These suckers are amazing. I was measured by a professional bra fitter, and it’s a pretty cozy sports bra. It hooks AND zips in front. Happy smiley face! I think it’s helping with my recovery pain management. All I’ve taken post surgery was Tylenol in the hospital and then Advil. And I’ve used ice packs. They did give me some narcotics during surgery, so technically I had some of that, too.
This picture is pre-surgery with the wire in there. Yes, I’ve just put my breast on the internet, but in the interest of helping only one another woman with this diagnosis…I will keep talking about the specifics. (This pre-op pic grey area is about how big my bruise is now, too.)
All the pre-op stuff took less than an hour. We went to Starbucks after and got me a Venti black coffee. Jess got to have a latte, but I am happy he had a nice coffee. We drove around and then went home and watched Netflix. It was chill and nice.
It was a little awkward when I got to the surgery center. First they couldn’t find me in the system. NO ONE knew that Dr. Plastic was going to be involved, including Dr. Surgeon. No one had him listed on anything. I had to tell everyone. I kept looking at Jess….is this ok, (I promise I didn’t have a fugue state and lose memory that I didn’t go to see Dr. Plastic.) I told the anesthesiologist and surgeon, I swear I didn’t imagine talking to him, and Dr. Surgeon’s nurse scheduled both surgeons to be here…so what is up?
Dr. Surgeon called Dr. Plastic. It was confirmed that YES, he’s my plastic surgeon and YES he had some particulars. He didn’t come, but he did give Dr. Surgeon instructions on what he wanted. I had total faith in both the anesthesiologist and surgeon, but I was surprised that the plastic surgeon wasn’t there, and that no one knew about it. I like Dr. Surgeon, and I didn’t want him to be disappointed in me. I didn’t like feeling like somehow I was a wacko. Jess reassures me that I did just fine.
Um. If I wasn’t such a good self-advocate so
After surgery and in recovery 2, I heard the nurses talking about stuffed hippos. They had all these stuffed animals around. I said, “IF THERE ARE SURGERY HIPPOS I NEED ONE!” I was awarded my hippo immediately, saying I needed him to show my students. This so true, but I also wanted a souvenir. I mean, they get to keep part of my breast, it’s fair. Ha. Then when I was leaving and saw the Avenger emoji stickers I said “I NEED STICKERS!” I was given a whole string of them. I was a hit with the nurses because all I wanted was warm blankets, Tylenol and icy apple juice.
My scar, hours after the surgery, is NOT invisible. It’s a crescent. But if that’s what it stays as, it’s one of my favorite shapes so I’ll accept it. I have a crescent moon tattoo, it’s the moon I was born under.
To be born under the crescent moon means that you are like the tiny seedling. You are the new idea, the acorn that becomes the mighty oak. You are all promise, faith, grace. You hold the future in your hands.
When I was prayed over yesterday one of the ladies said “we know it will be your hands guiding the surgeon’s hands.”
I was held. And I returned.