Crikey, it’s been a while since I gave you an update, hasn’t it?! Sorry about that. No excuses… Er, maybe one actually – it’s definitely much easier to spread the news on social media than it is to write a long blog post, when you’ve got a sore boob.
Since last we met, I’ve had my lumpectomy and I’m recovering well. It does hurt, but that’s to be expected for a while, and it’s not unbearable, just frustratingly inconvenient. The good news is that I was told on the day of the operation that the cancer has definitely not spread to any other parts of my body. They only had to remove two lymph nodes, and now the tumour has been removed I’m effectively cancer free. Hurrah! Bottoms up… Drinks all round. Your round I believe.
When I look back on the day of the operation, I can only shake my head and once again curse the hospital that I’ve been attending. I was asked to arrive at the day surgery at 7 am, ready for my operation process to start at 7.30am. Alex dropped me off (I wouldn’t let him hang around), and I headed to the doors only to find they weren’t open. Fifteen minutes later and I was at the front of a queue waiting to get in. Finally, at 7.25am the doors opened and it turned out the receptionist was running late. The last thing I expected to be doing before my breast surgery was forming a queue in the freezing cold for 25 minutes. You can only laugh! Har. Har.
I’m not sure if any of you have had day surgery, but it’s most definitely no movie premiere. No red carpet, that’s for sure. The room I was in had ten beds on one side and ten on the other, with lots of staff buzzing around asking me the same questions over and over again. How lucky was I to get the nurse with verbal diarrhea? She just went on and on about her schooling, Lidl and God knows what else… I do love a bit of Lidl banter before a boob op at 8am in the morning! ;)
Yes, they are paper knickers on the top of that pile there, and I did have to wear them. In fact, I forgot to take them off and wore them home. Glam.
After my lumpectomy, I came round to a nurse offering me tea… It seems we Brits will drink tea on any occasion. I didn’t. I was lying (no doubt catching flies), trying to come round in some sort of graceful manner with all the other patients watching me from the other side. I was then hurried along, told to get dressed, given paperwork and eventually kicked out by 12.30pm, so the staff could prep for the next round of patients. Ah, at least it’s free healthcare. Mustn’t grumble. I’m just very thankful I had an amazing surgical team, which after all, is the most important part of the process.
Unfortunately, I had to return to the day surgery at 6 pm that evening and it seems we kept the whole surgical team waiting before they could finish work for the weekend. I had slept for most of the afternoon, only to wake up with blue dye all over my t-shirt and lovely white bedding. It had to be checked out as that was not obviously meant to happen, but it seems I was simply one of the very rare cases where the dye used to locate the tumour had leaked back out of my wound instead of passing through me. In fact, my surgeon said he’d never seen it happen before. Typical.
After the op…
After the discharge nurses got hold of me… Easy on the padding!
Anyway, I’ve come out much better off and am now on the road to recovery with just four and a half weeks of radiotherapy to go when my wound has healed. As for the scars, I’ll probably barely notice them over time – The surgeon went in through the nipple (eek!) and seems to have done a pretty good job of sewing it back on. Thank God for that!
I hope no one is offended by my pictures. I want to share as much as I can about my cancer journey as possible to help raise awareness, and hopefully help those going through the same thing. Close your eyes now if you don’t want to see my boob five days after the lumpectomy. I was searching for info before I had my tumour removed, but couldn’t find a lot of what I wanted to know. So here it is for those that are curious. Nipples… We’ve all got them until something like cancer takes some away.
Until next time x