Wednesday, April 10, 2013


I started today with a quick good-bye to Chris, who left for a conference in Tennessee, followed by a 7:30 a.m. meeting with our architect to discuss setbacks and site plans and elevations. (We're building a two-car garage, and I swear the permitting process makes it seem like we want to erect the next Sears Tower.)

And I ended the day with a more major setback of a different type: my damn incision split open, and I'm headed into semi-emergency surgery first thing tomorrow morning to fix it. Apparently, this is fairly common on irradiated skin because it just doesn't heal that well, so while my left side is almost perfectly recovered from that swap-out surgery 3.5 weeks back, my right side is a bloody mess tonight. I've got it covered in gauze and took a valium to calm myself down because go back and re-read that first sentence. My husband is in freakin' Tennessee. 

Luckily, we have incredible family who have rearranged their schedules last-minute to spend the night at our house (even make their own guest bed because I wasn't expecting to have to use it so soon), take me to surgery tomorrow, take Quinn to daycare, pick both of us up, and calm me down because they're able to handle the logistics while I focus on my second surgery in four weeks. This is the same family who helped us move last month. They organized packing parties, saved newspapers, rounded up boxes from other family members, managed our contractor--even when he threatened to walk off the job because we were asking him to fit too much into a one-week period--and scored $10-a-square-foot tile for us for $3.25. I am grateful beyond words. This family is a keeper.

Also, maybe this time I should take my doctor's advice and rest a bit after my surgery instead of trying to fit in a move and set up a new house. To be fair, I know the moment the incision tore (I mean, you can't miss that kind of pain), and I was getting out of the bathtub. So, see? I was trying to relax, even if it was a bath with Quinn. But it's a deep tub, and I must have flexed my pec muscle too hard boosting myself up to get out of it, and I split my damn incision. DAMN DAMN DAMN.

I honestly thought I'd popped an internal stitch, that my surgeon would be able to use that surgical glue stuff to hold everything neatly in place, and I'd be fine. But he took one look at me today and said he'd have to go back in and possibly even exchange my implant if there are even the tiniest signs that the environment is no longer sterile. (By environment, I mean my breast pocket. Just to be clear.)

I tried not to cry in my surgeon's office as his assistant made a bunch of calls to get me on his surgery schedule tomorrow. I was not successful. I know that in the grand scheme of things, this is minor. As one survivor said to me, "Every molehill is a mountain when faced with this [expletive] disease." But there's also a gaping wound where my breast used to be, the timing is awful, and this means the clock starts over until I'm allowed to pick Quinn up again. Six weeks is a long time not to be able to hold your kiddo.

Damn molehills. Damn setbacks.

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