What a day!  Today was a little reminiscent of what life was like 3 weeks ago.  Mike had a lot of stuff he had to accomplish today, so I tried my hand at being alone with the girls for several hours today.  Mike got the girls out of bed this morning and downstairs for breakfast.  We ate breakfast together, Mike got the girls dressed, and then he had to get out in the sun go run errands for the rest of the morning.

It was kind of a bummer because today was a GORGEOUS day for the month of April in Seattle.  The sun was out, very few clouds blowing over, and a slight breeze.  The bummer came in because I don’t feel confident enough to take the girls out on a walk or into the neighborhood by myself.  They are working so hard on testing us these days and practicing their recently learned defiance that I can’t risk one (or both) of them throwing a tantrum, refusing to walk home or running away from me.  I can’t even run at all, much less fast enough to catch both of them running in opposite directions.  We have a small deck off of our living room where the girls have a few toys, but that wasn’t sufficient enough to keep them entertained.  They decided they needed to do things like dig the gravel out of between our pavers and throw it over the deck, down by our garage or into where we have some landscaping.  Then, when that got boring, they decided they wanted to put the gravel in their mouths and spit it out at each other.  Very naughty, very trying times.  I can’t imagine what it would have been like if we were away from home and they decided to act up.  What am I going to do with my T-rex arms?  Shake a finger at top speed and hope no one notices I’m literally a paralyzed parent?

However, I got through the morning pretty well.  The girls decided to poop as much as they possibly could while Mike was out of the house, so I had to get creative with trying to get them interested enough into coming inside and then sit still so we could change diapers.  (This is so much easier when I can just pick them up and carry them inside.)  I made lunch for the three of us (and bran muffins for later) and was able to assist them with climbing into their cribs for nap time. So we didn’t have any disasters, but we didn’t really get a chance to embrace the beautiful day like we could have if I was 100%.  All in due time, though. Mike was home from his errands on time to help get the girls up from their nap, re-dressed, and outside for a jaunt around the block.  I had to go with him to pick up one of our cars, so I got to try my hand at driving again, but a much further distance from home, and it went very well.

After trying to do a lot more than I have since my surgery, I am in a world of hurt.  It set in probably 4 hours ago and hasn’t really calmed down yet.  I am throbbing in my underarms and along the sides of my flaps.  As always, my sternum hurts (on the length of it), and I have a weird, cold, burning sensation in my chest when/if I inhale through my mouth.  However, if I inhale through my nose and exhale out of my mouth, I do not have this same sensation.  My back and core hurt, too, but I think that’s because I was trying hard to find different ways to shift, support, or move my weight while playing with the girls today without putting weight on my arms (because that sends shooting pains through me and I’m not supposed to do it).  I am still having intermittent muscle spasms between and below my shoulder blades, but I think that is because my posture is still quite affected from my surgery and physical limitations.  I am actually looking forward to taking my Dilaudid before bedtime and having some of this pain and discomfort decrease for a few hours.  I’m hoping that when I wake up at 2 a.m. (for reasons unknown and annoying) I will not feel as stiff and sore as I did that first week home.  So while I successfully did a lot of things on my own today for myself and the girls, it feels like too much.  I think I’ll use this next week to find the happy medium between being a happy mommy and being in pain.

Before I sign off for the night, I just wanted to let anyone reading this that I’m not going through every single day in verbose detail for the hell of it.  I wanted to make sure that if any other woman is scouring the internet looking for information on what to expect after a bilateral mastectomy and DIEP flap reconstruction, that this blog is ACTUALLY found and helpful.  I know it seems like there is a lot of the same written about here (and a lot of bitching and bemoaning my recovery), but I just want to give as much information about how I’m feeling during recovery, what I can do, what I cannot do, and what I have to do to heal well.  I read a lot of other women’s blogs before my surgery.  Some were more helpful than others.  I only found a few other blogs from mothers to young children going through this process, but all of those women had school aged children and a lot of family very close by for help.  Having toddlers is hard.  Having toddlers and recovering from surgery is hard and heart breaking because it’s such an important stage.  So it has been a challenge (and still is) to ask someone else to come here and help me mother my children during this important time in their lives because I’m not physically strong enough to do it.  But it is what I have to do right now for all of us, particularly myself. I just want to provide as much detail about the recovery process so another woman can feel a little like she knows what will be ahead of her.

Everyday I am thankful for having a new lease on a breast cancer risk free life with my family.  We have so much ahead of us!

And now is the time where you either click away or endure the post op show…




04/07/12 - Frontal

04/07/12 - Flaps

04/07/12 - Right flap, bruise almost gone

04/07/12 - Left flap, king sized

04/07/12 - Abdominal incision