“Although the world is full of suffering, it is full of also the overcoming of it.” ~Helen Keller
I chose this on this morning one year ago as I was at the hospital in the very beginning of Covid being prepped for my double mastectomy. My breast cancer journey began on April 14, 2020. I am in awe of God, and His gracious hand. He is the ultimate surgeon. I am more than grateful my husband was there as my caretaker when I came home with 8 drain tubes, and in immense physical as well mental discomfort. 4 months ago in a couple days was my last, and final surgery. I with God have overcome the suffering. I am a survivor. All glory to God!
I had many hard days full of grief, and lots of tears. I have had many days of meltdowns, that without God I could not have endured. I have learned what grief, and acceptance are in this medical crisis that came my way. This was not just something I went through alone. My husband has had his own emotions, and struggles through it all too. We persevered with strength in our loving God. For He is good, and He will not put us through anything we can’t get through. So I overcame. We overcame, and today 1 year later I am breast cancer free. I am getting back to what is my normal slowly, but surely. God truly is the ultimate surgeon, of the body and soul!
Last night I was advised to go the Emergency room after talking to the on call surgeon. I am one week post swapping out my tissue expanders for implants. The last surgery in my breast cancer journey. Yesterday was the worst I felt the whole time since my surgery.
I was in tears when I was told my husband could not be with me at all. They were doing a work up for sepsis. I had tears streaming my face as my phone would not even connect to make a call out.
Thankfully after a long day with a fever, and feeling very nauseous my blood work came back all clear. My blood pressure was high when I got there. I refused all medication while there, because of all my allergies. I was the only person who could advocate for my own health. They were going to give something on my list of allergies.
So at the end of it all the conclusion is I have a pretty good sized Seroma. I will be seeing my surgeon tomorrow to see how we are going to address this. I am in a lot of pain. I am so swollen, but thank God I am home. Thank God it was not sepsis. Makes you realize how precious life is, and how fast things can change.
I was so weak, and sleepy. The Seroma was just making me feel crappier than I even knew. I have had many of you responding with prayers, and kind words. I just wanted to update you all on what is happening as of now.
So I am resting, and my husband was given 2 more days off of work to be with me. I so appreciate all of your prayers! Lord willing I will stop draining soon. I just keep holding on to “this too shall pass”.
God bless you all, may God be with you all as we approach the coming New Year!
So yesterday I had my final breast cancer surgery. My husband, and I were overwhelmed by the prayer response we got. I woke to texts, FB private messages all saying we are praying. As well they reassured us how much God had me. Which there was no doubt how very present he was.
I have such a very complicated health background. So when my double mastectomy went off without a hitch I was ecstatic to say the least. I was writing home to mama even though really she lives here, and I am able to call her on the phone. It just sounded sounded better to say that lol (more dramatic). Writing home to mama…😄
We knew the risks, complications, and just about all that goes into breast implants after a double mastectomy. Trust me we double, triple, and quadruple checked our information as well statistics. I am allergic to so many medications, and foods. This is decision was not taken lightly, or without fervent prayer.
My surgeon in all honesty after reading my prior health history told me his anxiety went up even thinking about the double mastectomy let alone putting implants of a foreign nature in my body. He in the end with us, after weighing heavily all options gave his approval. I went all summer with just above my average size breasts before my masectomy for the tissue expanders, which are what stretches my skin for the implants that are now my breasts.
So as I sit here everything at this moment looking back in retrospect everything went better than expected, and God answers prayers! Prayer is so powerful! I did have to have drain tubes that are producing very little blood. They will be taken out the morning of Christmas Eve if they keep producing less than 15 milliliters. Which I am pretty certain they will be.
So far what I see in the mirror I am excited about, I could have never have gone without breasts. The lack of sensation in my breast tissue has been quite enough for me to accept alone.
So now our prayer is for no post surgery infection, and number one on my list is SLEEP. I have the opposite reaction to anesthesia. Which is more common than realized. I have slept 2 1/2 hours since being home at 4 p.m. yesterday. I suffer from insomnia for about the first 3 days the anesthesia messes with my internal sleep clock. Which I am trying to keep my attitude in check since my “hot” wonderful husband was by the grace of God able to take a week off of work in care of me. So I smile when he walks by even though all I wish to do is scream “I need sleep”! I won’t do that though. I am going to try for small catnaps today. Which hasn’t happened yet.
I know the size of my breasts are to me perfect because it is the same cup size I was before they removed them. They are just more full as I am almost 47, and have had two children 24, and 22 years ago. So they just look happier. They may not be super natural, but I have breasts. I am free of breast cancer! I rode my mountain bike all summer with as much ease as you can with expanders that are the same as the implants I have now, but felt like a vice contraption. These implants are so much more natural feeling. The stretching of my skin that is so thin from the removal of my breasts, was very painful. It has all been worth it. This is not the route for every woman as each case is so individual to the woman. It is such a personal, and intimate path. So soon with God on our side this journey will all be in the rear view mirror. God has so done miracles in this body of mine. The surgeon said to my husband “if all my patients had as healthy of tissue as your wife it sure would make my job easier”.
All God none of me, I think not drinking has played a huge roll in that. Sobriety has served so many positive roles in my life. As well All God not me. I am just a willing participant in this journey of my life. Praise God for that. I show up for my life today!
We have meals for over a week, from a meal train my mom started. How very blessed we feel. The hardest part about this is not being able to hug our closet. When my mom came over the night before my surgery, with her soon to be fiancé to bring food. Saying goodbye without a hug was the hardest part. I teared up, and my heart felt sad. It has been too long of this social distancing from those who hold the closest places in our hearts!
So as I am finishing up this post, I am a very sleep deprived, extremely blessed woman. Who knows my creator God was present through this whole journey from diagnosis to now. If there are errors or anything confusing in this post please excuse me, as it is time to try one of those catnaps I am in desperate need of. As well my husband has not once left my side (he is a God send). He too is very emotionally drained. He is already snoring away next to me, hopefully that will be me soon enough. Except I don’t snore. Blessings All. Sorry for the long post..lots in my heart ❤️
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father…that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being. (Ephesians 3:14,16)
So I got the call that my final, and my last breast cancer surgery is a go for Monday the 21st of this month. With that came tears because reality hit. This is it, it is finally happening. Of course whenever anyone is put under there is also a little bit of nervous anxiety.
We have so much to be in laud to our loving father God for. I will be in 100% self quarantine starting tomorrow after I Covid test. This weekend we had 3 separate little Christmas’s with those who are near, and dearest to us. Two people each night beginning Friday. How blessed we are to have these beautiful people in our lives.
We had strict orders that no food was to be exchanged or eaten at any given get together. We gathered, and we did everything according to my surgeons orders. We had a couple pictures with masks off, but it was for milliseconds.
I am all done with everything Christmas, I am ready to be locked down. I really kept it simple, and stress free. We were so blessed to be able to give this year, and that my husbands job has been essential. God is so present, and I know on the day of my surgery He will be right at my side. He is the Ultimate surgeon. He gave me an incredible surgeon who I trust fully. I feel confident everything will go as planned.
The biggest struggle I am having is that my husband has to drop me off, and say goodbye at the car. That one cuts a little, but I know it could be so much worse. It has been for so many people.
So I will continue to spiritually ready myself. I will be praying lots, reading, staying connected to friends/family, and the one thing that allows me to do all this is my AA meetings. So I will be Zooming a lot too. A gift in, and of itself.
Here is a sneak peak at a couple of our early Christmas pictures. My husband’s best friend of well over 40 years dates my best friend of over 25 years. He thought it would be super funny to come out to our car to make sure we didn’t forget anything (while spraying unknown fart spray all over our car). 🤢 Almost 55, and these two are like little boys when we get them together.
Psalm 35:28 My tongue will proclaim your righteousness, your praises all day long.
I was able to spend my day with my beloved mom. She was giving of her time to take me to see my surgeon today.
My expander had shifted more causing even greater pain, so this appointment was in hopes of him being able to once again try to manipulate it back into its place.
I was literally in the surgeons office for maybe 10 minutes. It had shifted to where he just turned it left, and bam it was right back to where it belonged. I was in awe. He was so excited he not only high fived me, he hugged me. He knows what a long road this breast cancer journey has been. His face was all lit up.
He wanted me to get my bra on immediately to keep the expander in its place. When he saw my bra, he was not happy. He said it was not supportive enough. His direct orders were to go to lululemon, and buy a very high end sport bra. $213.00 dollars high end. lululemon makes technical athletic clothes for yoga, running, working out, and most other sweaty pursuits. One bra for my needs was $108.00. I have many girlfriends who shop their. It was quite the treat.
Quite the treat is having my breast expander back in place, and I am praying until my surgery it stays there. My mom, and had a very enjoyable day together today. She even treated herself at lululemon.
So here is too beloved family that is willing to help when we need it. My husband got to work all day, because my mom sacrificed her time. Family is such a gift! God is great, and he knows exactly what we need when we need it!
“Honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as yourself.” – Matthew 19:19
And there it was a number overly recognized on my caller ID. We had just prayed with the knowledge I had ripped all of my stitches that held my tissue expander in place, and tore my muscle that my last breast cancer surgery would be moved up.
That ring was God answering our call, we had changed the date several times. We just moved so that became priority, then I just way over did it. Me! Anyone who knows me knows that is just how I work. I wanted so desperately to get my home all decorated, and settled in. Well that is all done, I am fresh out of excuses. As well I am very uncomfortable to say the least. Sleep is hard, and my left breast is discombobulated. It moves inside a little too much for my liking. So of course I said yes. God heard our cries.
My surgery for my breast implants is December 21 at 9 a.m. So I am getting new boobies for Christmas. I am nervous mostly with all of the Covid cases, but I trust God as my ultimate surgeon. As well my oncologist put me in the hands of one of the best plastic surgeons in our city. I expect the best outcome. Yes it is not natural, but at 46 it was the best decision for me. I couldn’t imagine having no breasts. We thought about every option, and every route woman take when given a double mastectomy due to Breast Cancer.
I woke to a disturbing private message begging me not to do this. This lady quoting “she is saving my life.” As if I haven’t done all the research on the pros and cons of Breast Implants. As well I have a very complex makeup. I have had numerous surgery related complications, and allergies as well. My surgeon is very well aware of my previous hardships. So to say I was a little put off by her unwanted opinion is an understatement. I don’t wish to start any morning off with a lack of Serenity. Yet there I was, feeling like who does she think she is? I was angry, and put off. I got emotional. I allowed her to take my peace, just for a minute.
Immediately my husband, and I went to prayer. We together asked God to intervene. I can’t afford to have my Serenity be upset, nor be in fear and not faith as I am readying for such a huge change in my life. I am so grateful I know when my spiritual house is disturbed. So now my heart is back on track, and we have a lot to do before my surgery to be ready for our Christmas.
Thanking God today who always keeps me on the right path to the next right thing. Thanking God for hearing our plea to up the date. He is so faithful!
I love the LORD, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Psalm 116:1
I had to see my surgeon yesterday. He confirmed every stitch that was holding my left tissue expander in place were pulled, and no longer holding it in place. So it is now mobile, and that is why I felt so much pain.
My expander had actually flipped, he asked if I wanted him to try by hand to flip it back into place. I wasn’t thrilled at the idea, but if it meant helping with the pain until surgery I was in.
I was in a lot of pain in that breast, as well torn muscle on both sides. So my kind husband grabbed by hand, and I leaned into my doctor. He was very much grappling my breast with twists, and turns. His hope was by manipulating it, it might flip back. A couple times he thought he got it. Nope it just flipped again, and again. He tried!
It was more than an unpleasant feeling. As well very awkward with my husband on one side, and my breast in my doctors hand. My husband is so great at making uncomfortable moments funny. He had some very colorful jokes, and he was on a roll. He had us all laughing. For a few minutes I forgot all about the fondling of my breast. It was something you would see on a comedy television series.
I am so grateful my husband was able to take me yesterday, and for his comic relief. By the end of my appointment I felt very good with the end result. Even though my expander was not able to be flipped my surgeon is so encouraged on the end outcome. Of course jokes were made about that as well. I really needed that laughter, and I realized how serious my days had gotten with all the pain.
I feel lighter today, and know I need to try hard to not get caught up in the depression pain can bring. I need to remember this too shall pass.
There is so much to be said for an attitude of gratitude, and a little bit of a reality check. It was all needed, because this week hasn’t been my best. Nor have I been. So I thank God for always helping me get to where I need to be. All it took was a little fondling of my breast, and some comic relief that I won’t repeat… 🤣
Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “jour.” Find a word containing “jour” or use it as is. Bonus points if you start or end your post with that word. Enjoy!
I am desperately lacking sleep with my new breast disposition. Last night there was just no way to find comfort in my pain. I tried to reposition my body in hopes of comfort. I am now hoping my bed is just a sojourn for me.
I read up a lot about dislodged breast tissue expanders. I am being told that my whole expander rotated, and I most likely tore muscle. As well the stitches that I popped are my pectoral muscle stitches. Just when I thought I could say I had a surgery with no complications.
I created this, but not by being reckless. I didn’t do anything that at 7 months post double mastectomy I am not allowed to do. I guess I should have listened to the push back my body was giving me.
When a woman gets into a new home she wants to make up her new home. There would not have been a lot to stop me other than what is now. I was on a real roll, the day this happened I took 10 large boxes to the recycle, and 2 bags full of packing paper. My house is close, but no cigar. So now my husband says I can point at objects, and tell him where they need to go (so blessed) but in all honesty that just seems to defeat all I have done. I create when I put my home together. This whole rotated expander just bites, and now surgery is just around the corner.
This breast cancer journey has been a long one indeed. I am so grateful to be breast cancer free. I just believe I might be a little sleep deprived, and agitated that my body is so stuck right now. I always participate if I can in this SoCS prompt.
I think it best for me to rejourn once I have found a little sleep. I like to be peppy, and positive. Right now I just need to step away for a bit. Get back to the heart of the matter being, take some quiet time with God. Sleep must be found, and I also must be ground in Jesus!
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
I admit yesterday I was bit testy after my pre-op surgery appointment.
I admit it seemed like I had a million papers to sign on Covid alone (so exaggeratory) but hey this is my story.
I admit I was saddened when my doctor said my mom can’t care for me after surgery since she works at the biggest hospital in our town. She would have had to self quarantine for 2 weeks prior. So whatever.
I admit I don’t really have a so whatever attitude I am just overwhelmed by all that was said. Covid has changed everything about this surgery.
I admit I need to get on my knees, and pray for God to take the anxiety as well agitation I am feeling at this moment. I need to give it all to Him.
I admit I am so far from perfect, and my attitude has been far from desirable.
I admit I need to pray for God to give me unshakeable faith. One that does not even flinch at the slightest discomfort. He will furnish the quiet place for my soul with all the furniture of faith. I need all the help I can get I admit.
I elect right now to be removed from the unrest of my soul. Beholding God’s calmness in my impatience, God’s patience in my limitations, God’s perfection. This is my election to be free of self, and allow the spirt to work within.
I admit I am of a human, with a spirit that needs attuned to my Heavenly Father today! I admit I have been afraid. I am ready for this breast cancer journey to be over. When really it is not up to me, so my plea get myself out of the way of His will for all of this today!
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13
My day will be spent away from WP today. I have my pre-surgery appointment today, for what prayerfully should be my last breast cancer surgery.
I will have a mandatory Covid test, and some other blood work too. As much as I would rather stay home, and stay warm this is necessary. So Lord willing everything will go as expected.
As well the day of our move the temperature is dropping drastically to a whopping 33 degrees, with the possibility of snow Friday. So crazy I grew up here, and this will be the first in many years to get snow before Halloween.
So lots to turn over in prayer today. God has us, and always has our best at heart. I am trusting on November 9th, my surgery will go without any complications. For God is the ultimate surgeon. We have been on a very long breast cancer road, and I am ready for this to be the end! 🙏🏻
God bless! Prayers would be greatly appreciated and coveted!
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lordyour God is with you wherever you go.”Joshua 1:9