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Final reconstruction – post op Day 5 & 6

11 Dec

The last two days have been better days.  I was pretty sad on days 3 and 4 wondering how I was going to make it through this recovery because the pain was so bad, but I’m doing better now.  I’m grateful for Kevan and Judy (my mother-in-law).  Judy let us stay with her in Nashville the first 2 days and then she came and stayed with us the next 2 days.  She just went home yesterday.  I don’t know what I would’ve done without them.  They made sure I was given my pain meds every 4 hours.  Judy set an alarm at night and got out of bed just to make sure I was getting what I need.  She also had to help me up so I could go to the bathroom.  I am so grateful.  Thank you Judy.  Also, thank you for all you did with cleaning my house, doing laundry and everything else you did for us.

I didn’t post earlier because I hate typing on my phone and my laptop is just too heavy for me to lift so I have to wait for Kevan.  Kevan helped me get it all hooked up tonight.


The first day home I was able to lift myself, but it has been too hard ever since.  Not sure if the anesthesia had not worn off yet or if I’m just so sore now that I can’t make myself do it.  I’m not allowed to use my arms to help myself up so it is really hard when you are so sore to lift yourself if you can’t use your arms.  Kevan has helped me take a few showers.  It went well and felt good.  Much easier than after the mastectomy. I was able to stand the whole time and I hung my drains on a hanger that hung on the curtain rod. I am not allowed to let the water hit my chest directly so I have to stand with my back to the water and let it drip toward the front.  It still feels good.  Also, it was several weeks before I could wash my own hair after the mastectomy (I think) because I couldn’t lift my arms that high.  But, I washed my own hair with no problems or pain. I’m not allowed to scrub because there are steri-strips or adhesive strips over my sutures.  So, I just kind of squeeze the soapy water over me and then let the clean water go over that.

After I get out of the shower I have a lot of pain in the top of my breasts (where the sutures are through the muscle).  I’m pretty sure it is muscle pain so I take a Valium and it really helps with the muscle spasms.  Kevan took some pictures of me today just so we can see the progress and I look like I’ve been in a terrible accident or was beat up pretty bad.  lol!  I can’t wait until a couple weeks from now so I can see what it will look like without all the bruising and sutures sticking out.  Also, my stomach is VERY swollen still.  I had some liposuction for the fat grafting and it looks bigger than it was before surgery.

My bruising from the liposuction (for fat grafting) seems to be getting better.  It still REALLY hurts on my hips though.   Most of my pain is from the sutures at the top of the breasts and the where the drains come out.  It is very red and sore where the drains are.  I can’t wait to have them removed on Thursday.  Praying that I won’t have much fluid draining the next two days so I can have them removed.

I’ve been trying to do my exercises between 3 and 5 times per day.  I’m doing a lot better than I was last time.  I’m hoping that I won’t have any scar banding this time and won’t require physical therapy.  I’m tiring of the wraps over my stomach and breasts.  I cannot wait until I only have to wear them at night, but it won’t be until the 3rd week (I think).  I was going to post some pictures of my bruising and sutures, but I am just not that brave.  After I looked at them they just looked so bad I didn’t want to subject you guys to it.  lol!  Plus, it might scare those that have to go through this themselves.


Thank you everyone for your prayers and big thank you to my church for setting up meals for us.  It lets Kevan stay home with me and not have to leave to figure out meals.  I’m trying to wean off my pain meds so I can start reading my bible again.  I can’t read when on them since everything is doubled or jumbled together.  Hopefully, tomorrow will be an even better day.  Love you all!  God is good!

Misconceptions

8 Dec

I had my first follow up visit with my plastic surgeon yesterday.  The nurse unwrapped my chest and stomach.  Due to the bruising I had already noticed from under the stomach wrap I had decided not to look.  I was just scared it would be emotional.  Because of the wrapping things already looked smooshed.  After the nurse and Kevan encouraged me to look I walked over to the mirror.  As I did, my drain accidentally fell onto the floor and pulled on my side which made me queezy and I had to hurry and sit down or I was going to pass out.  Kevan said all the color was gone from my face.  I’m not sure if this happened because of the emotional aspect of what I saw or because the drain pulling, but I let her rewrap me without looking again.

You see, I was under the impression that I would look normal again.  Like on tv when someone has a breast augmentation.  They show the after and the person looks great.  That is not what happened.  I have about 9 places where there are sutures sticking out.  They are there to hold the implants in place until the pocket heals enough to hold them there.  Another surprise was how high my breasts are sitting.  They said it will take between 3 and 6 months for them to fall into place.  That is a long time.

Also, my stomach, where they had to remove fat via liposuction for the fat grafting. I  looks a little strange and very bruised, but she said this is normal and I’m just swollen.  I will have to wear the stomach wrap for 3+ weeks.  I have no idea how I will hide it under my clothes.

Some good news is that they fit me into a bra yesterday.  They first put this sticky foam on the top of my breasts to push the implants down and then the sports bra (it zips in the front) and then they wrapped another wrap over the top to also help push them down.  This wrap is the most painful as it also rubs my underarms because it is so high.  This wrap is what is causing the most pain and also where the sutures are sutured into the breast muscle.  It does seem a little better today.

The bra they fit me into was a 40 C.  I used to wear a 34 B.  I’m hoping that the 40 is due to being swollen and it will not be the ending number.  Lastly, I just want to say that if you go through this just remember that his isn’t the end result.  It takes several months for the implants to drop and for things to heal.  I have to keep telling myself this as well.