One week from today I go in for my bilateral mastectomy. I am freaking out. Very scared and nervous and scared and scared. Did I mention I was scared? Very.
I remember all too well going for surgery to have my lumpectomy last March and it honestly just wasn’t too bad as far as pain or discomfort. In fact the nurse pretty much had to force me to take a Tylenol as they just didn’t believe that it didn’t hurt. It didn’t. But they wouldn’t let me leave without painkillers in my system. What is freaking me out is how strange and scary it is when they put that mask over your face to knock you out. Talk about a total lack of control. And I get all squeamish thinking about what they are going to do to me while I am under. Waking up is also very disorienting and strange. I hate those feelings. This is what is scaring me the most.
I am nervous about how I am going to handle looking down on my chest and seeing no breasts there anymore. My nipples will be gone too. HOLY SHIT! All you ladies think about that for a minute. Imagine those things that have been front and centre and the cause of all that attention over the years being cut off your body. Scary. The reconstruction process is a long one and it will be several months before I get my implants and new nipples. And those new bits will look nothing like the old ones. The ones I have had my whole life will be long gone never to return. My new breasts will be fake and have a big scar across them. They will be numb. They will be very different. I just don’t know how I am going to feel about it. Or handle it. Or accept it.
I met with my plastic surgeon on Friday and got a lot of information about what I have to expect. The last time I met him, which was also the first time, I was fresh from my last chemo and fairly out of it. So I am sure he told me a lot of information then but I don’t really remember it. First of all I thought that I would get this surgery done and have tissue expanders put in to stretch my skin to accommodate implants. That is exactly what is going to happen. I remember him saying that I would have those expanders in for 6-8 weeks and then the implants would be put in. I was TOTALLY wrong. The expanders will be in for 6-8 months. MONTHS!!! This whole procedure is going to take freakin’ forever. That means all summer I have weird lumpy things on my chest. I guess my cute sun tops will be put in storage for yet another year. Apparently these tissue expanders cause discomfort. By that he means hurt. A lot. Apparently I will have a standing prescription for Tylenol 3’s at the pharmacy. Fabulous.
I asked if I could pick my implant size and he said no. I can basically expect to have hoots about the same size I have now. Meaning an A. Or small B depending on the bra. My radiated skin just won’t stretch that much. I am so disappointed. I had consoled myself a great deal by saying that at least I will get a bigger bust out of the whole thing. Nope. I don’t even get that. Savage bummer.
The only remotely good thing I can find right now out of this whole scenario is that my surgeon is very cute and I get to see him on the regular after my surgery so he can inject my expanders with saline as we stretch my chest out. I totally embarrassed my mom at my first appointment with him. I asked if he used skin from the bikini line for nipple reconstruction. He said no, he doesn’t use that method. I said good because I don’t want to have to give my chest a brazilian wax. Ba-dum dum! That went over like a lead balloon. My mom cringed and he looked at me in total bewilderment. Oh boy! Can I charm them or what? This last appointment I tried to hide my shock and disappointment over my surgery news by cracking lame jokes and being all jovial and cavalier. Then I tried to flirt a little to make up for the Brazilian Debacle. I walked away feeling like an ass. Now I am afraid that I might say something about what a hottie he is while I come out of anesthesia. Shame spiral! Basically I am a train wreck. Oh god.
I have also been trying to train Yoshi not to jump up onto my chest when I am lying in bed as she is apt to do every night. She is such a good sport and walks onto my tummy now so cautiously as I repeat, “Careful of the boobies. Careful.” Her face is all concerned and cute and I just want to weep over her sweetness. She is such a good girl.
So be prepared for nervous mumblings and outright frightened outbursts on this blog for the next six days. The countdown is on!