My surgery is scheduled. The date is rather ironic – February 14th. Yes, while many of you will be celebrating Valentine’s Day with chocolates, flowers, and wine, Mike and I will be romantically celebrating with breast swap surgery. They’ll remove the hard plastic expanders and replace them with soft and hopefully comfortable, implants.
It’s amazing to me how you can get used to just about anything when you have to. I’ve had to sort of jerry-rig a system to allow me to exist with these crazy, hard things inside of me. At first, I felt really guilty about taking drugs to help me through this, but I really don’t know how else to manage. I take Ambien every night to sleep. There’s no way I can sleep otherwise and so I just gave in and now I take it every night.
On days when I would get expanded, I’d arrange my night so that I had no driving to do, and take a Vicodin to relax me until bedtime. After that, I’d be fine with just 2 Aleve for a few days, and lo and behold after a week, I would realize I didn’t even need Aleve, until the next expansion. There were five in all and now I’m done until surgery. Once the surgery is done, I’ll start to wean myself off the Ambien, but for now, this is just how life has to be.
In the meantime, I’m ecstatic that the surgery is scheduled and I’m done with the expansions. Each expansion procedure got less scary, as I became more used to it, but I would still dread them because it entails needles and saline and pressure and back pain. So I’m very glad that they’re done.
On to the state of my boobs. They look surprisingly natural under clothes. Naked is a whole other discussion, but let’s face it, no one except Mike and I (and the occasional doctor) will be seeing the girls without clothes on, so it’s really not relevant for the rest of the world. My plastic surgeon is really good, and I’m so lucky that I found a good one within my benefits network. The cost to date for all of the procedures (including reconstruction) is up to about $240,000 and there’s still this next surgery to include. It’s an outpatient procedure, but it will probably add at least another $20,000+ to the cost. Please let that health care bill pass so that everyone has access to health care benefits.
There is definitely one plus to this whole thing. It’s going to be nice to wear skinny T’s in the summer, with no worries about bra straps, and think how cool I can be in the summer, without a bra. Given the hot flashes from the Tamoxifen, that’s a big plus!
Happy Valentine’s Everybody!