I’d like to blame my morning fainting spell on low blood sugar, but I think it has more to do with my new nipple.
Tuesday’s surgery went really well. I was awake the whole time, the nurse pumped my favorite Christian music into the room, the procedure was fast and I didn’t feel a thing. Pretty perfect in my book!
At the very end, when the crew was getting me all bandaged up, I boldly looked down for a quick peek at my new body part. “Ugheew!” The noise that came out of my mouth was a mix between a groan and a scream. My doctor smiled. “Too soon?” he asked sympathetically. “This is the worse it will look. It gets much better from here.” I was thankful for the consolation.
Ten minutes later, sitting at a restaurant with my friend, Ann, I was happy to have the hard part behind me. Or so I thought.
Then today arrived. It’s two days after the surgery and the first day I get to take a shower. I sleepily stumbled into the bathroom.
I should have known it was going to be rough when I started crying just pulling off the surgical tape. The nipple and breast have no feeling, but the rest of the skin on my chest does– and that’s where they attached the tape. Think of ripping off a band-aid…. that’s been glued to your skin.
Tape off, I stood in front of the mirror and assessed the construction site. I felt a nauseous little flip in my stomach as my mind and my body registered what it was looking at. Again, I cannot feel my left breast, but even the idea of water hitting the wound sent me into a panic.
Determined to keep moving, I stepped into the shower.
It’s possible that was not my best yes of the day. The minute the water touched my skin I knew I was going down. I threw myself out of the shower onto the dry rug in an attempt to hit the ground before the ground hit me. I swallowed back the urge to vomit and took several deep breaths. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus. Help me. Help me. Help me.
When I felt stable enough to stand, I made sure I was facing away from the mirror.
Now, dry and ready for the day, I’m feeling great. I’m confident the skin on my breast will heal into something resembling a nipple. After all, the mastectomy healed and that looked like a complete train wreck. Maybe I’ll just stay away from mirrors for a while.
By the way, as I love to say, there is always a silver lining! I’m on restrictions for four weeks: no lifting more than 5 pounds for two weeks and no more than 10 pounds for two weeks after that. Also, no running, laundry, dishes or vacuuming. Life is good!