Do you tense before being pricked by a hypodermic needle? You know it’s going to hurt, so you brace yourself. When I participated in the Polar Plunge on New Year’s Day, I stood in line tense and shivering. I had imagined it would hurt to hit the icy water, but I knew I could do it.
Having been through a double mastectomy, I know what it’s like to take the needle and wake up in icy water. Wednesday, my reconstructive surgeon will remove the hard expanders, open up the interior pockets inside my chest wall and sew them closer together. Then the soft silicone implants will be stitched into place. Yes. I’ve been tense all week.
After I splashed out of the frigid water, I dressed and ran for the car. My husband Danny blasted the heat. I took a long hot shower when I got home, but it took hours before I stopped shivering.
This time I am prepared to hunker down in the comfort of my home. I’ve downloaded a few books. The carpets have been cleaned. My nails are painted and I had my hair colored. I washed the chandelier and windows in my office and bedroom. Everything has been scrubbed.
I opted out of the fat transfer. My reconstructive surgeon wanted to take 500 cc’s of fat from my thigh and inject it around my breasts to soften the edges. I changed my mind after reading the eight pages of risk factors for the procedure. I also read that lumps can develop in a small number of women and can cause a cancer scare. I don’t want any more cancer scares.
A friend of mine went through a similar journey a few years ago. She decided against the liposuction as well. I am not burning any bridges. I can have the transfer later if I change my mind.
My doctor explained how the silicone implants are more natural than these stick-out boob expanders. (He did not use those exact words.) I think the new girls will be fine without the added fat.
I take hot showers and wonder what the new breasts will feel like. Will they feel like me?
This time the surgery won’t be as intrusive. They are using a general anesthetic, so I will drift around underwater for a few days.
My landscaper stopped by to inquire about the lawn. He asked how I was doing. I hadn’t spoken to him since the day I was high on Oxycodone and Nocor after the double mastectomy.
“I may have over-shared the last time I saw you.”
“That’s alright. I am glad to hear you are doing well.”
I told him I wrote a blog post about my one-sided conversation with him and his assistant. I had ended the story with, “At least I didn’t flash them.”
“I am going to be high on drugs again, so you better warn the workers. I may flash them this time.”
He looked at me and said, “Oh. I’ll tell them. They won’t mind.”
This time the eight weeks will rush by. During the first three, I’ll let the water swirl around my legs, hold me down and take me under. I hope to be released into the wild earlier than expected.
I can do this. I may wince when pierced by that first needle, but I will hit the glacial water and submerge into its icy flow until I plunge back into life. Danny will be there to hand me a towel.
Do you use the setbacks in your life as a time to regroup?