Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Silicon Boobs

I've been putting off scheduling my "new boobs" surgery because, frankly, I don't want to have another surgery. I currently have expanders, these hard, lumpy, not-at-all round bags sewn into my chest. They even have the potential to set off a metal detector, as there is a magnetic area on them. My plastic surgeon thinks the left one has leaked its saline, as it's much smaller than the right. Yeah, I noticed that, but given the description I just made, unmatched boobs just don't register on my radar.

I'll take a step back for those of you who may have started reading my blog late. Or for those of you who have not been obsessing over my life and may not remember stuff you read about me a year ago. Last March 16, when I had my double mastectomy, the surgeon cut out all of my natural (ahem, cancer-invaded) breast tissue from both sides. Instead of sewing up a flat chest, the government requires insurance companies to pay for me to get fake replacement boobs. So a plastic surgeon stepped in and put in these slightly saline-filled things called expanders, then sewed me up. In theory, I was to go back to the plastic surgeon every few weeks, he'd take a needle and put some more saline into the expanders, and like a balloon, my boobs would grow to the size they used to be despite not having any original tissue/fat inside. However, I opted not to have any expansions, and was fine with the 360cc's of saline that were in the expanders the day they were put in.

Once the typical woman's chest is the size she wants, she schedules a surgery called an exchange or swap. The plastic surgeon cuts along the same line as before, takes out the expander, and puts in nice round, soft, silicon implants. However, I was busy with chemo within a few weeks after my mastectomy. After that, I wanted to kill more cancer with some radiation for the next few months. Then I just procrastinated calling the plastic surgeon, waiting for the desire to get my new boobs.

It never happened. Yeah, I dislike the expanders, but not as much as I hated recovering from surgery.

But being the good, direction-following person that I am, I gave Dr. Baum a call and met with him a couple weeks ago. The surgery is scheduled for Friday, March 22. It's an out-patient surgery, which means that I'll show up that morning, get put to sleep, cut open, sewn up, and sent home around lunchtime. They say I'll be up and about by the next day, although weak. And that I shouldn't exercise for, GASP!, six weeks afterwards. (All my hard work?!?!)

On the bright side, here's an incomplete list of what this surgery will not be as bad as:
- Mastectomy drains
- A/C Chemo
- Neulasta bone pain
- Taxol neuropathy 
- Radiation burns
Since I'm done with all of that and I now have March 22 on my calendar, I'm now counting down the days to getting it over with.

Oh, "How can I help?" you're asking? Liz and Liz have added a few dates to the Meal Train. Also, I'm not sure when I'll get the green light to drive after my surgery, so I may need some carpool help for Bright Beginnings.

After that, I'll just be looking for someone to go shopping with me to help me pick out some shirts that accentuate my new silicon friends.

1 comment:

  1. Horray! You're a little over a week away. It will be so great to have it all done!

    Be sure to post about your hair before your surgery. I'm interested to read that one.