Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Long Time, No Words; But I'm Back!

Yes, it has been a long time.  Hard for me to realize that it has been over six months.  For some reason, once I finally got to the point where I had my implants, (the painful extenders gone), and chemo was done....I just needed a break.  It became a longer break than I thought, but I needed not to talk about cancer for a while.  Not that I will ever be a person who will not have cancer as a part of my life; but for just a little while, I needed to get back to me and figure out who I was.

Since I last wrote, the implants were and are wonderful.  My plastic surgeon left me alone for a while and just wanted me to feel good and heal after all the craziness I had been through.  I was glad to do that myself.  It's funny how you get so used to going and going to doctor's and appointments, that once you stop, it's hard to get going again.  I loved the time without constant appointments.  Even at the chemo center, I was now going only every three months.  Of course, each time they take your blood, you still worry that the numbers/counts will be OK.  One time when I was taking Claritin, it lowered my counts and for couple weeks, I was scared that this would be some more bad news.  But thankfully, it was not and the counts came right back once I stopped taking Claritin.  But still, each time, it's a new worry.  I now also will go to the chemo ballroom for a calcium drip twice a year.  It seems that my bone density showed that I needed support.  My oncologist recommended this drip and said it has actually proven to be of an additional protection against the cancer coming back.  So, it's a win-win.  It's just hard to sit in that seat once again and see that bottle above your head with it's long attachment into your arm.  You do what you need to do, however.

Right now, I am going to have what everyone hopes is my final reconstruction surgery.  Since my breasts were larger than the implants I have now, I have "extra skin" that is under my arms, and my plastic surgeon thinks the implants I have are actually too small for me.  He could just work at fixing all the "extra skin", but he'd rather use slightly larger implants and have to do less cutting.  I trust him, so that's what we are going to do.  It's funny because most people would rejoice over larger breasts, but having had them all my life, I like my small ones.  I did tell him "not too much larger!"

After this, he tells me we can talk about "nipples".  He has told me that they now can actually reconstruct nipples from your own skin.  That is probably good for someone younger, I am OK with tattoo nipples.   

I have (since June) retired from the preschool and I now care for my nephew's adopted son from China, who is two and a half.  He is really a love and has become a real joy for my husband and I; particularly since we don't get to see our granddaughter in PA as often as we would like.  His smile lights my heart and he makes my days happy.  I thought I would really miss being at preschool; but I have changed inside and out and this is a good decision for me now.  After 35 years, it is good to be doing something different and less stressful (yes, a two and a half year old CAN be less stressful....honest!).  In the meantime, I am trying to think about what I want to be when I grow up!

So, surgery soon and I am hopeful that all will go well and I just march on from here.  Stay tuned!