Wednesday, October 25, 2006

the day after procedure day

I spoke to many people on the phone today. All I could tell them was that I'm doing fine, because I am, but I still don't know what's going on with the lump because it will be at least a little while before the pathology report comes back.

I'm only have a little bit of discomfort now and then, and Tylenol is handling it just fine. I did my exercises in the early afternoon and then braced myself for removing the bandages. (Thanks, Tracey, for the bandage-removing advice!)

For the curious, here is what the bandage looked like. It took me a good five minutes to peel it all off, even using a wet washcloth to soften up the tape.

I had a reaction the adhesive. Sometimes I don't, but yesterday, I did. So I had that huge dressing, and after peeling it all off, this is what I look like. The incision is not tiny but it's not huge, maybe two, two-and-a-half inches. Much, much worse than the incision is the rash I have from the adhesive. (You can see the slightly red areas where the tape was.) It does not just itch, it hurts. And it hurts more if I forget and scratch it. I'm hoping liberal applications of cortizone cream will calm it down quickly in the next few days.

If you look closely at the second photo, you can just make out the remains of the purple word "YES" that I had to write on myself before the procedure to make sure they went digging around in the appropriate breast. Since the lump had to be located via ultrasound, it didn't seem to me that precaution would be necessary, but I guess they don't take chances with that kind of thing.

Now I'm remembering the surgeon asking me beforehand, "The lump didn't go away?" I wasn't sure he was serious, but I still said, "No," because of course it hadn't.

I think I found that lump nearly 3 months ago, actually. Then I convinced myself that it was just my normal lumpy breast tissue, not wanting to be alarmist. When you have fibrocystic breasts it's hard to tell what's going on in there. And when I went for my annual, the NP at my gyn's office didn't feel it, so I figured that it was my imagination. But it probably wasn't.

I got dressed and went to school and came home and helped with homework and finally wrote my November column (carrot raisin cranberry bread); made a nice dinner and gave DS2 his bath and put the kiddos to bed and watched "Lost" (wretched program!) with DH, and kicked around 'the internets' some and now this.

Today was definitely a 'fake it till you make it' kind of day. I don't feel bad at all, I just don't feel much of anything. ("Comfortably numb") It's just the next phase in the near-depression I'm dealing with. I'm still functional but I won't be able to climb all the way out of this Slough of Despond until I get the pathology report. I'm working toward the shore, though.

Sometimes I can feel the sunlight pouring over me.

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