Phew I made it. What now? Well my chance of getting an infection and my reconstruction failing has significantly reduced. My scars are healing really well and I have been given the thumbs up to proceed with chemotherapy on the 14th August 👍 (see my boob diary for a look at how they’re getting on). The reason why the two are related is that I’m also going to be taking steroids with my chemotherapy drugs and steroids apparently slow down/ stop the healing process. So, if my wounds weren’t to have healed I wouldn’t have been given the green light for chemo.
Back to normal?
There’s definitely been a big change this past week in both my mobility, my tiredness levels and my independence – for the better! Here are a few things that have happened:
- I’ve driven the car – 5th gear is by far the most difficult. You take it for granted but the movement is pulling towards you and does need a small amount of pressure. It does feel like your implant is popping up and it just feels really weird. It’s brilliant driving again though 👍.
- I can now wash my hair by myself – woop! My arms are still a bit stiff when I do this but they are tonnes better.
- I can shave my armpits – ok so this happened at 4 weeks but it was pretty painful to do back then. Now it’s relatively easy 😃. I’m quite lucky in that my armpit hair is pretty pathetic, it still made me feel a bit disgusting and unclean. All good now though and at least I don’t smell.
- I can carry Elsie 😍. So I took advice from Mr Turton about this conundrum. I really wanted to carry Elsie down the aisle at my little sister’s wedding (5 1/2 weeks post op) but wasn’t sure if I’d be ok. I’d not carried her at all until this point. Mr Turton advised me to carry her on the side and as close to me as possible using mainly your hip to take the weight. The further apart my body from Elsie’s the more it’s going to pull on the stitches. I knew the aisle wasn’t long and I didn’t have to bend down to pick her up. Anyway it happened and Elsie was fast asleep like a little cherub and it felt AMAZING. This was unsurprisingly very emotional for both me and Will who was in the wings with Archie watching ❤️❤️.
- I’ve been back to work – I started back at my own pace this Monday. It’s really good to be using my brain again after 5 weeks on shut down. I’m physically fine going back and I’m just taking things at my own pace slowly starting to engage my brain again. I was totally shattered after just a half days visit last week so wasn’t sure how I’d get on. Luckily I have an amazing line manager and I work with a great bunch of people. I do enjoy my job but it’s just such a relief to not even have to be worried about work and how people might react. The support has been overwhelming 😘
- Back in the routine – I’ve generally been much better at helping to get the kids get dressed/undressed (and myself!) making their breakfast/tea, tidying up etc. Things you take for granted are just a lot easier to do. My mobility has definitely improved and so have my energy levels and I’m starting to feel much more like myself again. And dare I say I’m actually feeling useful around the house rather than a liability 🤣
Although I feel tonnes better there are still some basic things I’m still struggling with:
- Sleeping – I still can’t get comfy. I’ve never been a good sleeper but someone is seriously having a laugh now 😠
- Getting in and out of bed – I still look like a bug stuck on it’s back all limbs flailing
- Walking – I can obviously walk but there’s a sloshing sensation when I do due to all the fluid buildup. This is totally normal with a foreign object in my body, it’s on the defence and will take a while to calm down. It does make you feel a little car-sick. It’s weird and that’s the best I can describe it. At least it’s not painful though.
- Exercise – see walking above ☹️
All in all not a bad 6 week picture. It could be a lot worse 😊
Liz Spice, 2nd August 2017