This time last week I was waking up in the recovery room at the hospital after having my top surgery. Today I am sitting out on the patio at my mom's with the cat enjoying the beautiful weather planning my trip home. I want to sleep in my own bed, have more than four shirts to choose from and take a long hot shower under the faucet with pressure like a fire hose. I want to see my cats and the midnight sun and maybe just maybe make some prints before I have to go back to work. I want to get out with my friend in her new boat and watch her reel in my giant 20 lb lake trout, (hey I can dream).
The first week honestly seemed to fly by but since I haven't been very mobile - unable to drive or walk too far, I have felt pretty stuck. As the swelling goes down, the bruising is starting to take it's toll. My skin is sore to the point that even goosebumps are painful. The area around my stitches is hard and bruised and really sensitive to touch even though it's numb.... I know it doesn't make any sense. I found a gel-roll which is basically a tensor bandage that has silicone on one side. I leave it in the freezer overnight and wrap my chest tightly in the morning. The light compression helps immensely with the pain and the cool helps relieve pain and reduce the swelling. I have been using ice packs under my arms and on my chest at least three to five times a day. I tried using second skin burn pads over my incisions but because they are still very uneven they didn't stick. I had to tape them in place which was extremely uncomfortable.
My nipple grafts are ugly. There's really no other way to describe it. They are black and scabby and coated with ointment which makes them weepy. I have to change the dressings every day which means more tape on my already sensitive chest not to mention yanking out some of my precious few chest hairs. Also, now that the swelling has come down a bit and the nerves aren't quite as compressed I am getting weird stinging pains where I used to have nipples....great...phantom nipples...just what I need.
I am happy with how things are progressing for the most part. I am uncomfortable if I move around. Reaching for things over my head is not happening but I am not having any troubles washing my hair or putting on a t-shirt. Now that my breasts are gone I find that my belly sticks out quite a bit more than I like so I guess some sit-ups will be in my future!
I finally got a haircut which is great in the hot weather but will have to go to my guy back home to get it cut properly. I tire out pretty easily and will definitely take advantage of the next week taking it easy and resting up, not lifting anything heavy and making sure that I can make it through an eight hour day when I finally return to work. It's not really a vacation feeling this sore and not being able to do things like drive. Unfortunately I think I will have used up all my vacation time by the time I return to work so getting a vacation to actually relax will be a long time coming. Perhaps I'll even go someplace that has a pool!