Saturday, March 31, 2012

New Boobies!

So, I am in my final few days till surgery! I am excited, but also nervous as H.E double hockey sticks!

I met with my surgeons this week and got the "all-clear" for surgery. It is a 10-12 hr surgery. I will be in the hospital for 5-7 days. This is a bit longer than I expected! So, I thought I'd be coming home on Good Friday, but it looks like I'll be staying through Easter, possibly. (Don't worry, the Easter Bunny already came and dropped off baskets for the kids. We are hiding them for him) Chris' mom said she may have the kids over to do an Easter Egg hunt on Sunday. Not sure if Chris will be coming to get me that day from the hospital or if it will be Monday.

Here is some basic info on my type of surgery.
Here is a few before and after pictures of a girl close to my size who had the TRAM flap done
Yes, I have taken some "before" pictures, but I'm not sure if I'm gonna post them yet. I guess it depends on the outcome of the "after" pictures. You'll have to wait and see.....

As for the details on surgery: I have to report for surgery at 5:15am on Monday morning. I will be in surgery until about 5-6 pm. I will have a catheter in until Wednesday morning because I will be pretty immobile till then. Tuesday, they will move me from the bed to the chair a few times. That's it. Wednesday, they take the cath out and I get to walk the halls. Get to, actually.....I will be forced to! He said they kick up my therapy on Wednesday to get the muscles moving, but they won't overdo it. I will have 6 drain tubes the whole time. 2 in each breast and 2 in my stomach. I will probably be coming home with at least 2, maybe 4 drain tubes a week later. I should be able to walk a little at a time, and go up and down my stairs at home once or twice a day. I will be sleeping upright for about a week, but should be able to side sleep after a while.

Pain- I qualified for a new study they are doing at MD Anderson. My plastic surgeon, Dr Skoracki, is writing a study and conducting research of a new kind of pain management and I was the first one chosen. Basically, in addition to the normal pain management (a small piece of mesh netting that numbs your abdomen,  in the inside right by your fascia) I will have a pain pump with 2 small tubes inserted into my abdomen, one on each side. In this pain pump, will either be a saline solution (placebo) or bupivacaine. I will conduct a survey a few times during recovery, and again at 6 months and 12 months. Once all 40 patients have participated in the study, the results will be released as to whether or not I received a placebo or the real pain drug. I won't know until then what I got. Once there are 52 patients between MD Anderson and other hospitals, they will publish the findings of the study. So, let's hope and pray that I get the real drugs and not the placebo!!! It's a 50/50 shot.

Visitors- I will welcome HEALTHY visitors anytime, however, there are a few times I've blocked out for my kiddos, so please call ahead before coming. I will also welcome daytime visitors at home after Chris goes back to work on April 16th, if you bring coffee/lunch. hehehe I am gonna be bored outta my mind that month! Especially Tuesdays and Thursdays while Grayson is at school!

Updates- Chris will be posting on my FaceBook page all day Monday, and hopefully I can get him to tweet for me too, so it will show up on the sidebar on the left of the screen for those who aren't on my FB page.

Help- as mentioned before, we welcome hot meals anytime. We don't need them every day, but an occasional one any time during the month of April would be helpful!  Cleaning fairies are always welcome! You'd be doing Chris a HUGE favor and he deserves it. ;-) The other way to help is to come rescue my kids from house boredom and take them on a play date or outing of some sort. Weekends for the older 2 kids, or M,W,F for Grayson.  Plus, it would give me a chance to rest, and possibly Chris on the weekends since he will be working so hard at work, and also once he gets home.

So, as for me and my thoughts.... I'm nervous and excited at the same time. I've never been under anesthesia that long..... I've never been in the hospital that long...... I've never been immobile that long...... I just don't know what to expect...... I'm nervous as all get out...... I am also scared...... The normal usual scary surgery stuff...... I hate IV's and I will have to have one in the whole time. YUCK! .......Grayson has never gone that long without snuggling with me. I am his security blanket. Not that I wanted that role, but for some reason, he never got attached to a blanket or teddy bear as a baby. So, I'm worried about how he is gonna handle me being away, and also how he is gonna handle not climbing all over me once I'm at home..... I'm also nervous that he is gonna forget and hurt me accidentally. He's a little brute, and is sometimes quite rough.....

Please remember to lift me up in your prayers on Monday. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Surgery is almost here!

I am in my 2 week countdown to surgery! I am nearing the end of my journey. I still will have some stuff ahead, but for the most part, this is the last step. It just most likely won't be my last surgery. Usually there is one or two "tweaking" surgeries later on down the line because it's hard to get them EXACT the first time.

So, April 2 is my surgery date. It's a Monday. I meet with my plastic surgeon, regular surgeon and the anesthesiologist next week to go over last minute details. We have all the arrangements for the kids worked out for the most part. Chris will be up there all day Monday until they kick him out. He is going to drive back and forth to visit me every day because of 2 reasons... #1... it's easier for him to do the kids school routines because he knows exactly what they need to do throughout the week. #2... he has stayed with me throughout almost EVERY surgery I have had to date, and as much as I love that man, I'll sleep much better if he isn't beside me snoring.  :-) It's hard enough to get sleep in a hospital, to begin with...not adding snoring to boot. So, he will come visit me every day, but come home early evenings to put the kids to bed, make sure their homework is done, chores are somewhat done, and make sure they get a bath.....etc... I have arranged rides for Kaylee to and from dance, and Grayson to and from preschool. I have arranged for my mom to be here for Brayden to get off the bus, and I have prepared a few frozen meals that are easy to cook.

I'll probably be released Friday (Good Friday) or Saturday to come home. Easter will be pretty much non existent this year. I'm buying the kids their Easter stuff this week, so I'll be ready, but we usually go to church that Sunday and then have a nice Easter meal and Easter egg hunt. That will be all on Chris, so I'm not sure if those things will get done this year or if he prefers to just skip it.

Chris will be off with me the following week, but I'm sure he will be busy trying to keep the house clean, get the kids to all their functions, and cooking and doing laundry, not to mention taking care of me. I'm so thankful his job allows him to be at home with me for 2 weeks, and I'm glad he knows just how to pick up my slack without me having to tell him what to do. Let's face it, I'm gonna be all doped up on pain meds, so I can't be expected to remember our routine. It's gonna be tough, but he can do it.  :-)

I'm really not sure what to expect with the surgery, post-op, etc... So, I am preparing for a 4-6 week "out of commission period". I'd rather be over prepared then scrambling at the last minute for dinner or transportation for the kids to something. So, I'm trying to stock our freezer as much as possible with easy frozen meals, and I am making sure we have all the basics, so that Chris will only have to shop for our produce and milk products.

So, for those who have asked what they can do to help..... here is a few things....
Prepared meals, frozen ahead of time or fresh dinners dropped off periodically
After Chris goes back to work, I'm still not going to be allowed to do much, so a few cleaning fairies would be helpful! Toilets, floors, counters and things like that. I'm gonna have a cleaning lady come every 2 weeks, but still stuff in between those dates would be helpful.
A few coffee dates or lunch dates after Chris goes back to work to keep me company since I'll be house bound for a while.
Since Grayson only goes to school on Tuesday and Thursday, a play date to the park for him, or something fun like that so he doesn't get bored being in the house all day.

Or, for people who can't do any of the above but still want to cards for gas, groceries (HEB), or local places where Chris could pick up something (Sonic, Subway, Chick-Fil-A, Icky McDonalds, etc). Since he will be driving back and forth for the week to the hospital, he will need gas a few times, and we are doing a 5-day parking pass that's like $50, which actually saves us about $10 for the week.

So, I think that's about it. I'll update more right before surgery when I have more details. So far, all I know is that I will be coming home with 8 drain tubes in various places, and won't be able to do much for 4-6 weeks except take it easy (almost like bedrest for a pregnancy).

12 days to new boobies and a flat stomach!!!!