Friday, September 12, 2008

You Are Always On My Mind

Sept 12

You are all on my mind and I hated leaving the blog on such a negative note. I know I have said it before, and I'm not sure how to say it differently . . . but I appreciate the support. Tremendously!

When I first started this blog, I wrote whatever was in my mind. It was all out there; fears and swear words alike. Then I started worrying about my mother reading the blog; and I began to filter/censor what I wrote. I even went back and edited what I wrote in previous entries! I needed to be "me" in this instance on Wednesday. I cannot apologize for it. I know that I will continue to find humor in the upcoming months and will share it with you, as well as some of the not so funny things.

Wednesday was a day of reality. It was the first time I’ve looked at my breast after the 2nd surgery. It was small; noticeably smaller compared to the other one. The what-ifs and kicking myself kicked in. What if I insisted that we do chemo first, would so much tissue have been taken out? Kick, kick – you were too passive on this Renee. What if you just said NO to a 2nd surgery? Kick, kick – you should have talked to the oncologist before agreeing to surgery. Kick, kick – you should have done a bi-lateral mastectomy, and then you could have gotten perky ta-tas. The start of the black hole.

On Wednesday, I took the pictures and descriptions of wigs that I found on the Internet to my hairdresser. We went through them, noting the length of the “hair” and finally found one that matches my current hairstyle. This was huge – and to have made a decision with Becca just further cemented that I have cancer. Further into the black hole I go.

Coming out of the black hole of depression, for me, takes processing time. I needed to take each thing that was bothering me to find the things that I could change or control. It’s like walking each item through the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change
(ta-ta is smaller and you can’t add on to it);
courage to change the things I can
(buy a wedgy or use Vic’s sock to pad the bra);
and wisdom to know the difference.

On another note . . . .I have found getting into a comfortable position for sleep to be a challenge since the first surgery. The only position I’ve been able to sleep is on my back, with a pillow under each arm – and that is in 2-3 hour increments. Needless to say, lack of sleep doesn’t help the healing process, let alone the emotional part of me.

The port on the left chest area just feels weird. Not quite a “pain” feeling, but there is discomfort. So that leaves sleeping on the left side out. The surgery is on the right breast so laying on the right side is uncomfortable and/or painful. I’ve tried wedging a pillow underneath the breast, but then the position tweaks out my neck.

I was overjoyed to wake up this morning to find that I had slept over 8 hours! Whoo hoo!! I thought last night was a comedy routine, though. I arranged a couple of pillows so I could sleep on my right side. Okay, a “couple” isn’t quite right. It ended up being 6 pillows – in front of me, behind me, underneath me and who else knows where. There simply was no room for Vic in the king sized bed! (Sorry honey for kicking you out). And it took about 2 hours of adjusting and re-adjusting pillows to get the right support. But, aaaah, what relief it felt to sleep on my side. It’s the little things that give pleasure sometimes.

The report from Monday’s re-excision was benign . . . no cancer cells found in the extra tissue that was removed. Yippeee!!! Waiting for the results are the hardest part of this journey and hopefully this is the last time we have to wait.

The extra test on the actual tumor came back the same as the test on the biopsy. The diagnosis remains Triple Negative.

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