How am I? ” the nitty gritty”

It will have been two whole weeks come this Wed since my boob slippage surgery. I started back to work last Thurs. Why, oh why do I think I am super-woman, because I most certainly am not. Please pay attention any would be surgery candidates, you need more than a week off. I feel I must apologize right now to all the clients that had appointments with me last week, because I cut your hair on Percocet (yes I did) and I hope you were not aware that I felt at least a little off my game and feel I just might have been a little too chatty. For a start off, my chest was strapped down like a twenties flapper. How in heavens did those women do the Charleston? It is nigh on impossible to breath properly and I know I didn’t adhere to the “Try not to put your arms above your head” rule. I was very sore and very tired and just a tad stupid (in more ways than one)
The true nitty-gritty of it all is revealed below. I am sure that there will be some wonderful women out there who will have to experience this same problem, I know, I’ve looked it up. I’m not sure how often it happens and I’ve had more than a few people ask me if it was the surgeons fault? Will it be fixed for free? I don’t honestly know and I don’t really care. The one comment my plastic surgeon said that made me want kick her in the shins, was that, and I quote… “No guaranties this will not happen again Tina, I’m just saying, you can’t make a pair of spanks out of an old pair of tights”
I did point out that while this was moderately funny to one such as I, it probably is an analogy best dropped.

So here are pictures before surgery, six days post and twelve days out (today). I know they are not the prettiest of breasts but I’m trying to learn to like them.

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p.s. Sorry about the skin tones, I’m not really all these different colors.

The wandering boob is back home…….

Although I feel a bit of an old hand at this surgery lark now, I have to admit to a bit of trepidation yesterday morning. Peter and I had had very limited sleep we were both a tad on the cranky side (me especially). The nurse noted that my blood pressure was rather high and at that point I decided we needed to kiss and make up. Never a good idea to go into surgery in a bad mood.
I think all went well, although you never get to talk to your surgeon after surgery, heaven forbid, I suppose they think you will be too woozy to take anything in, so, I won’t really know how it all went from her perspective until my post-op apt next Wednesday. From my end, well, lets just say there are a lot of stitches and I am the lucky recipient of yet another drain for a week. Pain level not bad, until I try to move but that will subside quickly I hope. The absolute best part of coming home from the hospital though is the look of love on my cat’s face when he realized his job as “guardian of the sick one”, was back on

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The mysterious case of the traveling boob….

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If anybody is still out there and still interested I have some news….morris
After a gap of sixteen months, I am headed back to the operating room. It appears that I have a wayward breast implant. Now, the picture of the lovely little vintage Morris Minor is not mine, although I’ve always had a soft spot for them, no, I just needed an image to do with traveling.
Back to my errant boob. The right one as it happens, began it’s slide southward about six months ago, but of late it has become quite pronounced and somewhat worrisome. Off I go to see my plastic surgeon Dr V who is all smiles and hugs until I dramatically fling open my robe and say “I think I may have a problem”
She sort of gasped a little bit, recovered herself and said “Oh yes, I see, have you had any trauma?” This question could have elicited all sorts of answers from me of a sarcastic nature, but, as I assumed she meant something like an air bag deployment to my chest, I assured her I had not. You never quite know if these things are routine or not do you? The doctors act as if it’s an everyday occurrence and they fix dozens of them a year, but really I have no idea at all if this is normal or not, maybe someone out there in cyberspace can enlighten me.

The crux of the matter seems to be that cadaver skin (nicer sounding technical name ALODERM) that is used to make a sling under the implant and hold it all in place, has become detached from my chest wall. So, all that remains is for me to pop back into the OR and have it re-attached……nothing to it….I hope.
I went in today for my pre-op appointment (surgery is on the 13th) and I sensed a certain vagueness in answers to questions like “how long will it take?” and “will I have to have drains again?” both of which received a squinty eyed smile and a head bobble “Probably not, but I won’t know until I get in there and how deep I have to go”
“HOW DEEP?” Alright, let’s just get this malarkey over with already. I will keep you posted……..

Nothing is easy………

Aright, I know that it takes time to recover from surgery and that you need to take it easy blah, blah, blah. But, out here in Port Orchard it is trying to be spring and I have vowed to get my garden whipped into shape this year. The thing is I seem to be having a spot of trouble with my left arm. Do you remember I had that axillary cording business after the mastectomy? Well something similar seems to be happening again. I don’t know if when I had this last surgery the surgeon somehow pulled something tight again. I don’t have the cording that shows like guitar strings down my arm but I am experiencing pain when I stretch out my arm. Still, I am not going back to physical therapy as I think I can just work it out myself.After two years of hospitals I now avoid going as much as possible, you understand.The rest of me seems to be healing ok, those long scars are looking much better now.

Back to spring in the garden. I decided to hire myself a little muscle. Yes well, I can’t call Dave exactly muscle-bound (He;s more on the small wiry side) but he is helping me for a couple of hours a week to do some of the more strenuous tasks that need doing.After fifteen years of marriage, I think I know my husband is never going to come around to loving days spent at one with the dirt, so I took matters into my own hands and advertised in the local paper. We have now successfully redone the compost bins (with the help of Peter after all) and I am full of good intentions to keep then in tip-top shape and that compost turned and used. I mean I have the chickens and they freely give of their eggs and their….poop! So I need compost bins. I now have three for compost and one for leaf mold. Something my brother (the real gardener in the family) swears by. If you don’t know about it click on the link above, this is what we sould be doing with our leaves insead of blowing them all over the place.IMG_3373I also managed to plant a few brussels and red cabbages in the newly weeded raised bed. Oh, this is going to be a great year for the veggies. Gosh mabe I’ll start a gardening blog!IMG_3375

Living in the Pacific Northwest…the good and the bad

First off, I am pleased to report my new boobs have been inspected at a post, post surgery appointment last week.I had one little stitch that had worked it’s way to the surface and felt sort of like a stiff whisker…..it had to come out. I did have a go myself but pulling stitches out yourself is beyond creepy. I am not sure how much longer this tight feeling will last,’m pretty used to it now, but it is always there. I am told to massage them vigorously every day with oil, but I have a feeling they will never be perfectly symmetrical  and that’s ok. I call them my Barbie boobs because she didn’t have nipples either.

This is the bad part of living in a wooden house in a place that has lots of rain. My beautiful orange bathroom looks like this at present.Yes, I know,scary isn’t it? Apparently, when we had the new windows put in, twelve years ago, this one was not sealed right and no flashing was installed. So, for the past dozen years it’s been a steady drip, drip, drip! Grrrr, how I hate the bloody rain sometimes, that and shoddy workmanship. This all means more and more bills to pay, oh enough of this let’s have a look at why living here is so great.A visit to the beautiful Lake Crescent last weekend with our friend Julie. The rain stopped for a day and it was magnificent.I mean honestly, this lake is stunning at anytime of year, but, with a low lying mist….mmm, so atmospheric. I felt as if I might be standing on the edge of a Scottish loch.This was just a cool shot as the sun popped out for a minute.A walk into the old growth rain forest. Trees with green hair…..fantastic. You expect a dinosaur to come tromping out at any minute.But, no, these were the only wee beasties we encountered.There was a big buck with them and we were a little tentative that he might come charging at us to protect his girls.If I had to choose between a leaky house (oh,did I mention we have one in the living room too) and not being close to this much beauty. I’ll take the leaks because it is so worth it. Hope it’s not too soggy where you are. If the weather is getting you down today, remember there is a turkey coming soon….YUM!

Cake update, award shows and work

First off, I have to tell a little tail on the continuing saga of the Christmas cake. She’s fine by the way, tucked away in her huge tin in the front cupboard. No this is about the next time I used the oven after her (not sure why it’s a girl, probably because she’s so fruity} baking. I noticed very quickly after turning on the oven that a bit of smoke was whisping out of the back vent. On opening the oven door….billowing, choking, kitchen engulfing smoke. “What the???” Turn off oven and inspect. The problem was a large pool of liquid on the oven floor. Now this is just a guess but, I think it might have been bourbon overload spillage, so, be warned.

I think I have told you how happy I am  to be able to watch some British TV on my lap top now. So, the other day when I was mopping my floors, no, I mean resting up before going back to work. I found an awards show that was called  The Pride of Britain awards show, so, I thought that would be good to have on in the background whilst I mopped, sorry rested. I love award shows with all the celebrities in their posh frocks and evening garb and to all intense and purpose that is what it seemed to be, untill I saw the first recipient. A nine-year old little girl who had pushed her younger sister out of harms way when a mad old woman put her car into reverse by mistake and mounted the pavement, crushing this little girls leg. The award was presented by her favorite pop star. The next award went to an elderly couple (and I mean in their late eighties) who raise money for charities by doing crazy stunts like abseiling off a twenty storey building …….What! I couldn’t do that. Oh, another of their fund-raisers was to sleep on beds of nails. Alright by this time I am on the couch with a box of kleenex. The whole show was about people who have done amazing things for their fellow man. The beautiful young woman who is dying from Hodgkin’s lymphoma who has single-handedly increased the amount of people on the bone marrow registry by hundreds of thousands. She was so beautiful, a frail elfin with parchment thin skin and a huge smile. I was a goner. What a fantastic idea for an awards show. Why don’t we have one in American? I don’t know about you lot but, I for one am sick and tired of hearing about all the negative shit on TV (don’t even get me started on about this election) This award show makes you want to go out and help someone not bash them over the head with a rolling pin.

Back to work this week. First day…..no problem. Second day……bit sore. By yesterday I was exhausted and feeling a bit beat up but have the whole weekend to rest up and maybe do a bit more knitting. I just made these baby booties in three sizes, for a friend at work, quite pleased with myself and a great way to use up that leftover sock yarn I can’t ever seem to thow away.

Goodbye drains….

Finally got rid of those pesky surgical drains, honestly they were quite uncomfortable, also the stitches (nice and neat as they were) have gone also, I took my first total immersion bath yesterday…..aaah heaven! The first day I came home from the hospital and really I’m not sure you should take my behavior as a  good thing. I thew up twice before I got home because the anaesthetic had not really worn off and I found two spots on my stitch line s that were, well, not to be too graphic, oozing a little blood. I used a couple of those butterfly band-aids and they worked a treat. I am feeling happy to be through this and have dispensed with the narcotics now that I am feeling so good. For me, the hard part is remembering not to lift things that weigh more than 10 lbs, it’s pretty unrealistic , even wet laundry weighs more than that, but I am trying. I will be back at work this coming week so get your holiday cuts and colors booked.

The cake progresses
First big challenge was constructing this……two layers of parchment with a pleated bottom if you please, took me a good half hour.Took liberty and added extra lemon rind because I love it.Now it did seem that to combine all these ingredients into that little cake pan would be imposible……but.HEY PRESTO! It all fit inside. I did have to cut down that parchment paper a bit, I mean, how silly does that look?Right, here it is then. All ready to get tucked away in a big tin for a couple of weeks. Smells divine and weighs a bloomin’ ton. Just put one more drizzle of bourbon on before I put it to bed. This must be one of the strangest blogs out there. Cancer and cooking, who knew the two could go hand in hand.