Sunday, June 22, 2014

Leave a light on

It's been a wee bit over a week since I had my second breast reconstruction surgery. Sort of really hoping and praying it's my last too. Time will tell, but at this point, the results are night and day from what I was rockin' on my right side prior. 

Pre-surgery: IV in, thumbs up.

Surgery was relatively easy. When I came to after,  I had pain and was given a Vicodin. I was able to stuff some crackers in my face immediately. The pain didn't come on until the following day and day after though. Overall, I would say the pain after was more punishing than my first breast reconstruction surgery.

As it turned out, I didn't require a drain after! Lots of surprises for Dr. Doezie when he got in there to do my capsulectomy, in truth. My implant had a 3/4 inch tear in it. Thank God it was cohesive gel! It was also twisted. Partially beneath the muscle, and the rest on top of the muscle. O_O How the even? haha So bizarre.

So he swapped out the implant with a fresh one, and instead of removing all the scar tissue completely, he removed some and created some scoring throughout it so it'd have room to expand for the implant. All this took an extra hour than planned too.

It looks awesome so far. I finally have some breast softness on that side, and the slope matches well with my left side. I'm super pleased with the results, aesthetically speaking. The down side? Tricky to know if I'm doomed to feel tightness on that side of my chest for eternity or not. I know my body is still healing, but just... guh. >:( 


At what point do you just sort of wish you could not need to worry about this hot mess? 

We all take for granted what we have until we don't have it any longer. Or if we're even blessed enough to have it in the first place. 

Like it would be a tremendous loss for anybody who has had eyesight all their life to suddenly become blind. Point being, I miss having my normal, flawed chest in tact. It tried to murder me and all, but it was comfortable and natural and mine. 

Most days my decision and what I've been through don't weigh on me. Nobody would even know  what I've experienced if I wasn't such an open book. Perhaps I even hang onto it too much at times. But you don't go through this shit and not allow it to mold you on some level.

I do my best not to bring up all the negative thoughts I have near daily. I shove it deep down and smile when that's the last thing I'd like to do. It's the fear of the disease returning. It's the pain I feel when I hear of any person going through it. The way your altered view of life makes you look at others and their priorities differently.

I'll see some cancer survivors talk about moving on with their lives. Trying to forget it ever happened. I deeply admire and respect them if they're able to accomplish that. I can and have moved on for the most part, but so much is still so different. 

The days I do forget, those are my better ones without a doubt. 

But... I'm alive. I'm all scarred and stitched up and broken; however, I'm still here. That's something I must perpetually tell myself.

So please Lord, forgive me once again. I stumble and some times it takes me longer to get back up and regain my stride. I will regain it though, specifically with and by your loving aide.

And lest we not forget, everything happens for a reason. Everything. As much as I despise that fact at times, it is the truth. :)

For all I know, maybe this will all heal perfectly and be fantastic. All I know now is that I'm still uncomfortable and in pain. Better option any day than not being here to complain about it though. 

God sees it fit for me to exist here still, so I shall exist and try to exist the best I know how. Showing kindness to others above all else. The world can never have too much kindness. And while being positive isn't always my strongest suit, I try to bring that to those around me as well as often as possible. It's the best I can do. 

No reason for me to be harsh on myself for any feeling I feel.

That said, I want to acknowledge my wonderful husband and parents. Mom and Dad were there again for this surgery. My Mom had even made me some healthy and fibrous soupy type stuff to eat post surgery. :) So so sweet. 

Jason took this one of my adorable parents as they all waited for me.

And Jason patiently, sweetly took great care of me afterwards. I love that fella kind of a lot. The evening after surgery, he had to literally feed me because I couldn't raise my right arm without extreme pain. He helped bathe me and cooked and cleaned and bathed me. Demeaning as it feels to require dependency on another person, I'm grateful to God that my husband is and has been amazing and willing enough to help me. 

Oh, he was my chauffeur too! Surgery was on Friday, June 13th, and I returned to work the following Wednesday. I wasn't allowed to drive, so he would drive and drop me off before going to work, etc. etc. It was pretty fun to carpool, admittedly. :) 

Anyway, thank you Beeyah for blowing my mind with your love and care. I am blessed to call you mine. <3 And Mom and Dad, thank you for everything as always! God is good to me by surrounding me with people who love me, and I love, so very much.

Lastly, our precious kitty Michonne, was also in on assisting me in my healing. The morning after, she crawled up on my lap and didn't move. She cuddled with me nonstop for those days I was hurting the most. Sweet girl.

My cuddlebutt kitty passed out on me as I recover. <3

That does it for now, everyone! Wishing you all a most grand week! Go appreciate and spend some time with the beings you love.

Until next time, God bless you all and take care. 

"The light shines in the darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not." John 1:5

Saturday, June 7, 2014

I believe in hope; I believe if I let go, I'll float

Soooo, kind of a lot has occurred since my last post! And I am most pleased and blessed to report that nearly all of the happenings are good ones! 

First things first, I saw my new PCP and she was fantastic. She put in the referral for me to see Dr. Doezie, the plastic surgeon I had been desperately trying to find a way to see. Well, the referral was approved!! I had no idea if it would go through or not as he's covered by our insurance, but just outside of our HMO group's coverage. So having that first major hurdle accomplished, I was able to schedule my consultation. 

My appointment with him was the day before my 29th (ugh) birthday, and what an unbelievable bday present I got! He told me that he believes he can fix my right breast without needing to do any flap surgery. Praise the Lord, like, for serious!

He's planning to do a capsulectomy, which is fancy-talk for cutting the scar tissue away that has encapsulated my right breast implant. Then he will likely swap it with a new implant. This time I will have a single drain. Bummed about the drain, but one sure sounds a lot better than the five I had to drag around after my mastectomy... ;)

In case it seems as though I'm talking about this as if it's coming up soon, that's because it is! My surgery is this next Friday!! I can dig it. Little to no time for me to dwell on it. The longer a surgery date floats around, the more you have time to think and worry. Which is no bueno says this Anj!

Instead, I shall get it done with and pray it is smooth and successful. 

Okay, so that's the big, most relevant news! Some other big stuff for me has gone down since April as well though.

I am no longer working for Starbucks. It took some huge changes to finally give me the push I needed to leave that job behind. It wasn't really the job itself that kept me at it. It was the regular customers I connected with, and of course the friendships I had formed with co-workers. I am extremely loyal and I felt it wrong to abandon these people.

However, it was ever so slowly poisoning my life. I was exhausted, bitter, and most of all, unhappy. I started applying for jobs where I wouldn't be expected to be on my feet my entire shift. I was also looking for a decent company to join that I could grow with. Maybe settle into a career at, etc.

Before I put in my resignation at Sbux, I had interviewed and been hired by a company in Irvine. It was described to me that my duty would be calling and setting up appointments for salespeople with businesses who were interested in the services the company sold. 

Sounded easy enough! Plus the sweet promise of full time hours, Monday through Friday work schedule, and bonus opportunities? That was all more than I needed to hear to lure me away. I was asked to start immediately. 

First week was all training. We weren't even on the phones until midday Thursday of that first week. The longer I was there in training, the more I realized I had been suckered into being hired for a telemarketing job. :( 

I survived that Thursday on the phones, and made it to lunch on that Friday before realizing I would be even more unhappy than I had been working at Sbux recently. So I politely waited until the lunch hour was over... packed up my things, thanked the trainers for the opportunity but apologized telling them the job was not a good fit. Like, really. Worst. Fit. Ever. 

I felt reckless. I left the job I knew for this "promising" new one, and it was all a mirage. I had even unintentionally burnt some bridges with my resignation from Starbucks because I wasn't able to put in my two weeks. All again, for this other job. And now I had left that job. 

I was unemployed and if I didn't get something, and get something relatively fast, I didn't know what Jason and I would do. We wouldn't be able to afford rent or our bills. All this running around my head, and I felt an eerie calm. Peaceful and relieved by it all.

As it turned out, God had it all under control. I trusted Him that I was doing the right thing. I trusted Him that He would lead me to what I was meant to be doing. 

I was unemployed for maybe a grand total of 5 days? A dear mutual friend of Jason and mine named Lindsay has a caring mother named Jayne, of whom I have only had the pleasure of meeting once before in person. She had read our pleas for anybody with any jobs leads in our area and had supplied me with a great lead!

We knew it could be a long shot because a lot of people were applying for it, and my interview was sort of last minute. But I figured I'd go in there and just be my Anj-ish self. And it went well, but I again never expected anything. 

Well, the day after my interview, I went about my business. I made it to church and was lazing about at home afterwards, but I felt really positive about everything. I felt that I needn't worry. I could put forth effort and see what would happen, but it was vital for me to simply trust. 

I texted Jason telling him just that. He mentioned feeling the same. So I decided I would get on my computer to check for new job listings. About 5 minutes after that, I got a call being offered the job I interviewed for! Nearly cried. I was overwhelmed with gratitude. 

And I started the following day. :) I'm working as a receptionist/administrative assistant for a wonderful little company called Absolute Health Care. The owners, Vicki and Ron, are amazingly kind and generous people... and the other girl in the office, Katherine, is super cool and fun to talk to. She's the one who shared the lead on Facebook that Jayne honed in on for me, by the way! 

Needless to say, I adore my new job. ^_^ AND if you or anyone else reading this knows of anybody needing caregiver services provided by a compassionate company in the Orange County area of California, look us up! 

Oh, and I know I mentioned it briefly, but I also lived to celebrate another birthday! While I could whine about how turning 29 sucks lemons, I shan't. You know why? I'm alive! And I'm dang proud to be alive three years after receiving a cancer diagnosis. 

In summary, life is good and I am blessed beyond words.

I pray that all of you share in feeling the same. :) Hopefully, be typing to you all again real soon with a more normal/improved right booby! Haha! 

Until then, God bless you all!

"But I trusted in you, O LORD: I said, You are my God." Pslam 31:14