Thursday, March 10, 2016

Mamakat: What I Learned in February

February First found me at one of the many hospitals in the San Antonio area, prepping for major surgery.  This would be one more step on my journey through cancer, a second mastectomy, along with breast reconstruction.  I stayed in the hospital for FIVE days, and have spent the rest of February, and part of March, recuperating.  Along the way, I've learned several very valuable life lessons.   Here are just a few:

1. Private hospital rooms are great, unless you have to sit up and can't reach the call button.  For my last mastectomy, I was placed in a semi-private room with a woman who never. Stopped. Talking.  That was awful, and I was happy to learn that I would have a private room.  I was stuck like a turtle on my back for two days.  The only thing I was able to do was sit up, and I needed a nurse to help move the bed. Except that the nurses placed the call an alternate universe.  I guess they thought that I would be so doped up I wouldn't notice.   I finally resorted to yelling really loud, until some random hospital employee came in and showed me where the call button was.   

2. My plastic surgeon does not clone his PAs.   Every morning in the hospital, I would start off my day with a physician's assistant arriving to check my sutures.  They were all lovely women, with long brown hair, and I thought they were all the same person, because, pain meds do that. You hit that button and everything is foggy.  Each one would introduce herself to me, and it didn't matter one bit.  I called them all Grace.  I don't even know if any of these PAs were actually named Grace.  I hope their feelings weren't hurt.   

3.  I cannot sleep on my back without medical intervention.  In the hospital, I had IV pain meds, which knocked me right out. I was a turtle on my back, with not much else to do but sleep.  But once I got home and was off the IV, sleep didn't really happen.  Oh, I would doze for a couple of minutes, but then my brain would start telling me that there was a zombie/serial killer/monster standing over me, and it was all over.  The day that the doctor said that I could start sleeping on my side?  Heaven!  Sleeping is good again. 

4.  My husband really loves me.  He's been by my side throughout my cancer diagnosis, through chemotherapy, radiation, etc.  He came every single day to the hospital to keep me company, after he dropped off our son at school.  But he's gone above and beyond.  Part of my abdominal incision tore, and so basically, I have a hole in my belly.  A hole that has to be packed with gauze twice a day.  Since I can't pack the wound myself, the job has fallen to him.  He's done a great job. It's one thing to say that you love someone when everything is wonderful.  It's another thing entirely to be there when the poop hits the fan like a cancer diagnosis.  He's the real hero in this story.   

Mama’s Losin’ It

Go check out Kat over at Mama's Losin' It!  The prompt I chose was:  1. Something you learned in February.


  1. Six cheers for you and Larry...and one for all of the Graces!

  2. That's a lot to learn in a month. Cheers to your husband for being so supportive! I know what a blessing that is. Hope you're doing better and have a pretty new pair of girls to show for all the suffering. ;-)

  3. Okay, the one about the PA's, made this girl laugh out loud. Prayers for your recovery.

  4. That is a lot to learn in February, and a hard way to learn it. What a gift a good husband is. Prayers for you and wishes for a speedy recovery. Hang in there.

  5. Well you put humorous spin on a pretty despicable situation. I'm so glad you're in good hands with your husband and Grace. And Amen to side sleeping and good medication. I hope you're having some better days in March so far!


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