I’m starting to get use to the pattern. Bad Day. Great Day. Downer Day. Better Day. And I’m adjusting. Yesterday was what I’d like to call a kick ass day.
For the first time in two weeks, I put on an outfit that was not a tracksuit (jeggings, yes, but I’m going to consider them pants in this situation) and stood in front of a group of Red Cross volunteers and staff and presented for some 45 minutes. Yes, I did it with a drain tucked into my jacket pocket, one arm pit was unshaved and undeodorized, and several times during my talk I felt short of breath, but hell’s bells I did it and no one was any the wiser. Except a couple of coworkers. Someone mentioned I looked so great so I felt the need to show them a peek of the drain. Just to remind people I’m not superman. 😉
I also got to see my coworkers who I haven’t seen since before the holidays which lifted my spirits immensely. God, I work with some amazing people. People I really consider friends. One of them came up to me and said she was doing a 1/2 marathon for Live Strong and wanted to run it for me along her best friend’s sister who also has cancer. Would that be okay? I mean really. I was hoping to go back full time to the office next week but I’ve got THREE doctors appointments on Monday and they will be retrieving my BEAUTIFUL HEALTHY LITTLE PRE-BIM BOOGIE eggs on Tuesday so it looks like it’ll be more like Wednesday before I can be in the office again. But still, good stuff.
I had an appointment as well with Dr. Bedri (plastic surgeon) and had my first boob pumping. He placed an expander in during surgery, which frankly feels like one of those plastic shoe containers that Lindsey has a million of in her uber organized closet–not the most comfortable, and starting yesterday will pump saline in my boob once a week or so to fill it out and stretch my skin so that come the actual reconstruction (late this year or early next) my boob will have room for the new tissue. The procedure itself was pretty easy considering I can’t really feel my boob (and the needle was pretty big, so I was happy for that!) but it was pretty tight afterwards. I’m pretending to be a tough ass though and am just pushing through. He also took off this plastic tape that had been covering my boob. I was a bit afraid it was going to rip the nipple I now treasure so much off with it, but he assured me that had never happened before. Luckily, I wasn’t the first, but I do think he was a little taken aback when I greeted it once uncovered. Ladies, never take a nipple for granted. I say hello to mine every morning. Honestly. She’s been quite the trooper and I am so happy for her presence.
And if that wasn’t enough, I joined Tim at the gym for a whopping 35 minute walk on the treadmill. Granted I was walking 25 minute miles and burned 150 calories (which I promptly ate in the form of ice cream and blondies when I got home plus some) but damn it, I did it. Woop.
I kinda expected, however, since yesterday was so amazing, that today would be a downer. It started off a little bit so, my hormones are really kicking in full gear, I’m bloated from my little pre-Bim Boogie follicles and this shoe box in my boob is really hurting. But after a brief little cry and some coconut milk coffee and CANTALOUPE (it is STILL that good!!!) my spirits were much lifted. And of course all the emails, notes, etc. I get help. Sorry I’ve been slow in responding to many people. It’s a little overwhelming. But I promise to and I thank you in advance for your thoughts and prayers. It really does mean the world to me.
When I lived in Portland, after a pretty traumatic breakup, I decided to document the whole grieving process through photography. (I was going to art school at the time and was at an all time high artsy fartsy phase). It was extremely cathartic however and I was really able to see my resilience grow as the project went on. I’ve been toying with the idea of doing the same thing with this so I’ve been shooting the shit out of my boobies. I started before the surgery even occurred and although I’m not ready to share them in all their (un)glamorous beauty quite yet, I may. But I’ll make sure to mention in the title so no one is permanently scarred by seeing my chest unexpectedly. 😉 One of the things I did when I first learned about my cancer was Google images of mastectomies and although it was hard to see, it was helpful. But at the same time, I saw lots and lots that were WAY worse than mine looks. So just like that amazing woman who showed me her scar after I had seen the bad one, I want people to see it’s really not that bad. Even if it’s shaped like a shoebox.
As a communicator I know that blogs aren’t supposed to run this long word-wise, but since it’s my own blog, I can poo-poo on guidelines. If cancer has taught me anything is that I am not always in charge, but when I can be, I’m making my own damn rules. Unless my mother is with me. She’s a stickler. ❤