Better Than Expected

I have mentioned before that my general attitude when facing a challenge is that I hope for the best, but expect the worst. My hopes and the good vibes and wonderful thoughts from friends and family certainly paid off. As my doctor said, “it was a perfect surgery”.
The anticipation during pre-op had gotten the best of me and I was a bit of a weepy mess. But as soon as I saw my team, I felt totally at ease. My plastic surgeon took purple marker and drew all over the old boobs. He was marking the natural curvatures so he could perfectly place the tissue expanders that are now inserted under my pectoral muscles. Then the anesthesia team came in and introduced themselves. I made sure to tell them that I get very nauseous, so they gave me “the works” in my drip to prevent that and put a patch behind my ear. Finally my breast surgeon came in and said it’s go time.
She walked me down the hall to the small corridor outside of the OR where my plastic surgeon was waiting to escort me the rest of the way. The room, with all of its big lights and serious looking machines was intimidating. However, both surgeons stayed right by my side laying warm hands on my arms as I stretched out in a T pose (legs straight, arms out). They calmed me by asking distracting questions and joking about being ready for cocktail hour at 8am. The anesthesiologist gave me the good stuff and then all I remember is waking up as they wheeled me to the recovery room.
At this point, I looked like a trout with my mouth wide open, because I forgot to tell everyone that I get lock jaw. So I freaked them all out because once they took the tube out of my throat, my jaw wouldn’t close. Apparently that’s not a great sign. I tried to close it myself but couldn’t, so an oral surgeon came in and popped it back into place. After a few blow job jokes, I went back to sleep.
I’m not sure how much longer it was until I woke up and saw my husband standing next to my bed. Once I saw him, I was happy and knew everything was all good. As the anesthesia wore off, we chatted and I was not in any pain at all. Over the last forty eight hours the pain has increased, but its much better than I thought it would be. The high tech pain management system they had me on allowed me to press a button every 8 minutes to add more happy juice to my IV. As I tapered off of that I’ve been on Percocet and Tylenol.
Recovery, so far, has been more uncomfortable than painful. It feels like an elephant sat on my chest or someone took a sledge hammer to my ribs, more sore than pain. And while I thought I’d be flat as a 12 year old boy, I have a pretty solid B cup already. Although there’s a straight line covered with bandages across both breasts, the lack of nipple isn’t freakish. I may sing a different tune once the dressing is off. I can keep it on and shower with it until my first follow up appointment next week.
First I have to go home. My surgeon gave me three criteria for my release: getting up to pee, eating solid foods and getting off of the IV. Hooray, I’m there! Now part of me is thinking, “cool, get me the f outta here”. And the other part of me is a little scared to go home. I’m acting totally like myself so I know that that part won’t freak the girls out, but it’s still difficult for me to move around without wincing at the discomfort and I don’t want the girls to see that.
Overall, I think they’ve been doing really well at home, but my husband and my mother tell me that the big girl is asking for me a lot. I hope that just my presence at home will be good enough for her. I won’t be able to hug them or pick them up and I’m going to be resting a lot. But like everything else has been, I’m hoping it will be better than expected.

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