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had surgery & out the other side!

9 REPLIES 9
GemmaJ
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

i know it's not ideal, but i don't actually mind i don't think. i love my daughter, she's so amazing and without her i don't think i could've got through all this as well as i have. but who knows what'll happen, wait and see i guess. there are so many other options for having another one so who knows.

sorry to hear you have to have chemo, i was so lucky i didn't have any of that!

xx

ostrich
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Hi Gemma,

Its another thing to have to deal with/consider though and for you I am sorry that you have that as well. Having had 3 kids (my oldest is 20 and my youngest 10) I don't want anymore and having just found out from my path results today that I will probably need chemo I am so glad so I haven't had the added questions and feelings over my fertility (be that from any surgery or chemo) 🙂

GemmaJ
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

hi ostrich,

i did ask my consultant before i had the procedure and he said he didn't see why i couldn't have anymore. however when i talked to my BC nurse she said she wasn't quite as sure. She said it has probably never been asked before, before it's so unusual for people of a young age to go through this procedure and for people to be young enough to have children. i think if i want more i would have to be refered to a specialist and i guess i wold have to have it by c section. but who knows what the future holds. i think i need to get myself through all this first before putting my body through something else!!

xx

ostrich
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Hi Ladies

Louise

Its good to know that I'm not the only one! I had a row with my hubby yesterday and decided that I would walk to the supermarket with my 10 year old rather than have him drive me. Its normally a 5 to 7 minute walk and it took me 20. I was so exhausted having got there and gone around the shop getting the half a dozen bits or so I needed that when he phoned me to ask if I wanted picking up I could have cried with the relief of not having to walk back cos I don't think I would have made it. I suffered all yesterday evening as a result!

I am feeling much better today than I did 2 days ago so I know I am making progress and in fact when my Sargeants came to visit me yesterday they remarked on how well I looked as apart from being somewhat bigger on one side than the other and holding my left arm gingerly I looked fine. In fact my mum said afterwards that I am starting to look and act too fine and people (in particular my hubby) will start to think I can do more than I can. This is probably true as my hubby has thrown himself back into work and in fact only taken 1 day off this week to look after me and left me to do the cooking whilst he goes and helps the neighbour with his plumbing! I can't win!

I am not sure if some deranged drug addict determined to resist arrest is more scary than a class full of 7 year olds! 🙂

Gemma

I have an enormous amount of respect for all the women on here (myself included) for what we go through but I have to give you an added salute for having to cope with this at such a young age and with a small child and the additional strength I understand it takes to get over a recon using your tummy muscle - wear your medals with pride!!

Not that I intend to have any more kids but does using your tummy one mean that you can have further pregnancies?

GemmaJ
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Hi Ostrich,

i'm now two weeks on since having my op and remarkably i feel really good! i thought the recovery would be far worse.
i have a 14 month old daughter so i've got someone with me all the time at the moment as i can't pick her up which is really hard.
but i still try and give her cuddles and she's being really good.

my tummy isn't quite as flat as i thought it would be, i think i thought it would be a magic tummy tuck and i'd come out a size 8 or something! but it is only two weeks so i'm not sure if it's still swollen??

i'm still quite in awe of wat they've done. i went to see my consultant on monday and he took my dressings off and i think wat he's done looks amazing, it's so clever. he took the clips out of my tummy too which wasn't very pleasant but it was good to see what everything looks like, and actually i don't mind... it probably sounds wierd but i think the scars look like medals - medals of what i've been through at the age of just 23 and i've come out the otherside and am now on my way to full recovery and living my life again without this hanging over me or being in the back of my mind all the time.

i'm very lucky tho, i don't have to have radiotherapy or chemo, if i did my thoughts may not be wuite as positive.

i only work two days a week but i'm signed off for 4 weeks at the moment, they say it usually takes 8 to 12 weeks for full recovery but i don't think i'll take that long. i'm raring to get up and about again and start exercising, i've got my 1st physio session soon to help re-strengthen my tummy so that'll be a step in the right direction.

xx

louise79
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Hi ostrich, i could ve written your above comment! I too have had a mastectomy and ld recon, but am a week further down the line than you. I was also riduculously positive and unphased about the whole cancer thing pre op and mow realise thats cos i really didnt understand the enormity of what was going on until i saw the wounds.. I had a really crap time in hospital, i couldnt go to the loo for 4 days and had reactions to every drug they gave me.

I have felt somewhere between nervous and terrified for large chunks of the time since the op, which is very alien to me as i'm normally very confident. I also feel like i cant admit how i feel because all everyone goes on about is how well i've coped with things and how inspirational i've been. My partner is the only one who sees me jump at loud sounds and break down in tears through the stress of just walking into town!

I am a primary teacher which is not nearly as physical as yours, yet is a long way from a desk job. The thought of looking after 30 7 year olds is terrifying right now. My partner keeps saying its early days and my confidence will come back as i physically get stronger. I know this deep inside, i just need to keep reminding myself of it. After all the cancer is gone now and in the grand scheme of things i AM one of the lucky ones.

ostrich
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Hi Gemma,

I just had a mastectomy and LD recon last Monday and came home from hospital on Sunday and like you am overwhelmed with how I feel. Recovering from childbirth was a walk in the park!!! I have had other surgeries under general but they were gynae and didn't result in big incisions, drains etc etc. I had posted on here before the op about how I was unphased by having cancer and the prospect of the op and, as my name here suggests was probably being a bit naieve and now I know I was. I don't know if it would have helped to have been more prepared and I probably would have been totally terrified sat in the hospital rather than the bright bubbly person I was waiting to be told to pop on my stockings and away we go!

I had my last 2 drains out today which is a relief but I still feel incredibly vulnerable and fragile. My new boob is huge and heavy, my back is killing me (I think with the other muscles in my back are working hard to make up for the lack of that one), my boob keeps contracting (v odd!). I haven't slept more than 2 hours in a row at a time cos I either can't get comfy or get comfy and my body refuses to move through subconcious fear of something giving way and I wake up in agony 2 hours later when my joints can't cope any longer and I have to move, I am absolutely knackered, I'm afraid to cough, sneeze etc, don't even ask me about my bowels (never saw that coming!) and I feel as weak as a kitten.

Oddly having my drains out didn't hurt, being injected in the tummy every day to stop me getting a clot did, lots!

Aside from the physical impact psychologically I am suffering. The realisation of what lies before me and how long it may take if I have to have chemo and radio etc before I feel like "me" again is reducing me to tears several times a day. The realisation that the chances of me being able to go back to front line police duties in the near future are slim (I have to pass a physical test to show I can wrestle people to the floor, handcuff them, hit them with my stick etc) is too much. The realisation that whilst it may be sometime before I feel physically able to have sex with my husband again it may be a while longer before I can undress in front of him and feel desirable is even worse.

My other huge realisation this last week is that this thing will be with me for life. I will have to declare it on life insurance policies. I can't give blood from the arm where they took my lymph nodes again (if they would want my blood) let alone have my blood pressure taken from it etc. I may beat it this time but it will always be a part of my life either as part of my past or part of my future.

Sounds pretty awful me thinks re-reading this before I post but as well as the horrid stuff I wont forget I wont forget that on Sunday I climbed into my husband's car to come home and looked out of the window at the beautiful afternoon sunshine as we drove home and shed lots of silent tears for how beautiful a day it was and how very very very very glad I am to be alive.

Oh yes, and as my wise 10 year old pointed out to me, me and her Dad are old so we can't possibly have been having sex as often as say my 20 year old daughter so it isn't that big a loss if I don't feel sexy! She then went on to say that when I do undress for her Dad I now have this super flexi boob that I can flaunt at him - a selling point I had been unable to see up until then.

I have cried more in the past week than in the 6 weeks since my diagnosis but I am really really trying to learn now to stop and smell the roses and take it one day at a time.

vertangie
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

I confess I passed out have the drain tubes removed... but then it was hot in there and I'm prone to fainting if it's hot. But youch that was the most painful part, glad it was over very quickly though.

Hope the healing goes nicely.

Angie.

dotchas
Member

Re: had surgery & out the other side!

Gemma,glad to hear you are OK.Sorry it was worse than you thought. I think we all underestimate how major the surgery is.
I had a LD recon in July and its feeling more normal now.At first it was like having a bowling ball strapped to my chest!
When I had my first drain out it was very painful but the girl opposite was waiting to have hers out so I had to bite my hand so I didn't sqeall!
Enjoy being home!

Dot
xx

GemmaJ
Member

had surgery & out the other side!

hi everyone,

i posted some messages on here a few weeks ago when i was petrified! Now... i've come out the other side!!!

i had a left mastectomy last tuesday and a immediate reconstruction using the tram flap method. It was all far worse than i imagined!

the hopital wasn't great but i was only in there 6 days - so it was barable!

I think the drains were the worst bit - they really hurt when taken out!

i have a few questions tho for anyone who has been through the same thing...

at the moment it feels like a rock is strapped to my chest, it's still very numb (which after a week is understandable!) but when will it settle down, it real terms how long should i be expecting before i feel nearly normal again!!??

i am very pleased to have a flat tummy again tho - thats very exciting. although it is a lttle swollen still and feels very tight.

i am happy it's all over now and at the age of 23 i have a long time to get used to it. i am amazed at how good they can make it look - i think even with the pain - it's worth it in the end!

sorry to babble but i hope anyone else going through this will read this and think maybe it's not too scarey!

Gemma

xxxx