I can't believe that it is already July 2011 and over half of the year has gone by. So much has happened this year already and there is so much more to come!
I have been working temp jobs as I knew that I was having surgery on July 15th. I am now in my last temp job and am in a fun assignment with the Office of the Public Trustee. I am learning how to do dictation and work with a small but fun group! What a way to end my assignments...on a good note!
July 11, I have my final pre-op appointment with Dr. G Moysa...my plastic surgeon. I am nervous going into this appointment as I have not seen him since January and I hope that everything is still good to go. I am so looking forward to my breast reduction that I don't want anything to go wrong with the date so close now. I don't know why I was nervous. Dr. Moysa met with me and we took our final "before" pictures and he gives me all the information that I need for the day of the surgery as well as all my prescriptions that I will need so that I can fill them before the big day. Breast reduction surgery is painful so I will be on powerful drugs to help with the pain. Thank goodness I can get Demerol as I am allergic to Morphine. After this appointment, I am ecstatic! I can hardly wait for the 15th to arrive. I am going to be a new woman!
Now, you may be wondering why I chose to have this surgery. Most people are kind of shocked when they hear that I choose to do this, they didn't think that I had a breast problem. But I did. I was a 36G in bra size and I hated it. I always had to shop at specialty stores for bras and they were NOT cheap. I longed for the days when I could shop at Victoria Secret and actually get a bra in a color other than black or beige. Clothes shopping was another problem for me. I always had to get clothes that were too big so that they could fit me properly up top. I guess that is why people didn't really know I had a problem...I didn't dress to show off my breasts in a bad way. So I hated shopping....in fact, if I didn't have to do it, I didn't. It just isn't fun shopping for clothes and always getting a size bigger than you need. And then there is the obvious weight issue of them. At the end of the day, I hated my breasts. They were heavy, they were in the way, they just hung there. It was just so unnecessary to be that big with my size of body frame. So these are some of the reasons why I chose to have the surgery.
My surgery is scheduled for 8:45 AM. I am fortunate that I am getting the surgery done in a plastic surgery suite, not a hospital. They take such good care of you in a suite, rather than a hospital. The atmosphere is very relaxed. You are given very comfy robes to wait in and it is just the best situation before you are to go for major surgery. As I am waiting in my super comfy robe in my super comfy room, Dr. Moysa comes in for some last minute markings on my breasts so he knows exactly what he needs to do. Just before he leaves I jokingly tell him (though I was being serious) that he shouldn't be shy, take as much as he possibly can. He turns around and smiles and says that he will see me in the operating room.
I have never been so at peace as I went into an operating room. Maybe it was the whole atmosphere of the place and the staff or maybe because I knew this was going to be such a great change in my life. The staff was so incredibly kind. I knew to enjoy the last few moments that I had awake cause when I woke up, I was going to be in for some super pain.
I remember waking up. Yes, I was in pain, but not like I thought I would be. The recovery room nurses were so attentive to me. Immediately I was being given more pain medication. The pain was not going to get out of control. Also, when I wake up from surgery, I am usually very chilled. They notice this immediately and without me even having to say anything, they put this machine on me called a "Bear Hugger" which is like a blanket type thing that surrounds your body and a machine is hooked up to it with a hose that blows warm air on you so that you warm up. What a nice and pleasant thing to have. Because let's face it, those "warm" blankets that they give you in the hospital are only warm for 30 seconds and then you merely have a blanket on you and you are still cold! Because of the bear hugger, my body is able to calm down and not have to fight the cold and can just be. The pain meds are working, I am warm and I am getting constant attention. Every surgery should be like this!
After a couple of hours of being in recovery and knowing that everything is going okay, I am good to go home. I am hooked up to drains and the nurses explain how they work and what to do with them. I am dressed and put in a wheel chair and taken to the room where I will meet Glenn. Thank goodness I knew a couple of people who had this surgery before and their tips to me were super helpful! I am completely bandaged up around my upper body and even the smallest tips like having a zipped up hoodie are extremely helpful and so necessary right now. How in the world would I ever have gotten a shirt or anything else on me?!?! It is so good to see Glenn. I can tell that he is worried about me, more so for my pain level and how that is going to go. We are in the back of the building going out a back door...so Hollywood style! But I get it...you really don't want to go out the front where people can see you and you are all bandaged up, can't move really well...those back doors for plastic surgeons are genius!
It is a slow process getting into the car. Have you ever not used both of your arms before? I am not going to be able to use my arms for about 6 weeks. Slowly but surely, we get in the car, strategically place pillows and SLOWLY make the drive home as every bump in the road feels like a huge crater in the road. But things are going really well considering. We get home and I get into the recliner chair and from what I can remember, I go to sleep. Glenn keeps up with my pain meds so that I can be as comfortable as I possibly can be.
Later that evening I wake up and feel a little wet. Glenn looks at my bandages and I am leaking a bit. Poor guy, he is so out of his element. He is afraid to touch my bandages because he doesn't know if he will hurt me, or if he will damage anything. He calls the doctor and the doctor tries to tell him how to change the bandages. But it is like Fort Knox trying to get into them, I am so wrapped up and there are drains and so much stuff. We finally called Glenn's sons girlfriend who is a nurse. She immediately drops everything she is doing and comes over to help. I don't know what we would have done without her! She is able to help Glenn with the dressings and we get everything back to what it should be. I do very well through this ordeal....Demerol is a beautiful thing! We have to see the doctor again in the morning to have the drains removed so as long as I make it through the night, all will be good.
I don't remember much more about that first day...I was very heavily medicated and slept for most of it. I can't do anything on my own. Glenn sleeps on the couch next to me as I have to sleep in the recliner chair. I have to be on my back for at least 6 weeks and getting in and out of bed will just be too much to handle. If I have to go to the bathroom or anything, I will need help as I can't use my arms at all. My abs and legs are going to be super strong by the end of this!
The next morning we go back to see Dr. Moysa and have the dressings and drains removed. I am sitting in a chair that reclines while the doctor and Glenn take everything off. I finally get to look down at my breasts to see what they look like now. Glenn isn't sure that I should as they look pretty beat up at this point, black and blue, big scars etc. But I can't wait to look! When I do, I instantly smile...they are so small and they look great to me! This is what I wanted. Yes, they look like they have been in a serious fight but I know that they will heal and that they will be what I wanted. We are given instructions how to take care of them and I will see the Doctor again in 5 days. More about this in the next post!