Grace and Peace

The past 48 hours have been full of little miracles and gifts! If you are reading this and had a part in any of these little miracles or gifts, know that I (WE) feel so blessed and so thankful and so amazed.

Seriously.

I won’t go into detail about some of these little graces but here is a photo of a wonderful gift that was made for me!

runtothebear(ignore how silly I look, please.)

We are hanging it above the mantle. It’s a perfect reminder to us that we need to run towards this with every ounce of fight that we have!

As for an update, very little has happened.

Health wise: Had to run to the doctor’s office for quick look at this weird squishy [read: cancer is NOT squishy] lump on my ribcage, under my arm about 3-4 inches. We thought it was a fluid buildup from removing my drain a bit early (because we thought it wouldn’t be a big deal with me having surgery again…). However, it is not a fluid buildup.  It is MOST LIKELY a swollen lymph node but it may also be a fatty tumor or something equally random and weird. It is definitely nothing to worry about.

Also, I got the go ahead to use my crutches last night. It is REALLY hard to do when your arm and side are so numb, but I’m figuring it out. It also really wears me out.

The only things that keep me in a battle with progress are a) getting dressed and b) sleeping.

Getting dressed is an obvious one. Even if I am allowed to move, I just CAN’T. My range of motion is janky and sometimes it just really freakin’ hurts. Sometimes I can put clothes on; I just can’t get them off!

Sleeping is less obvious. Before surgery and since I was 15 and my knee replacement broke (which led to the amputation), I slept on my left side. I did that because well, a broken knee replacement and constantly operated on leg are just not easy to sleep on. Post amputation, it remains difficult because I have a hip stabilizer. Now that I’ve had a mastectomy and lymph biopsy on my left side, I can certainly NOT lay on it. Laying on it could cause lymphedema, so I suppose it’s a good thing that it hurts. I wake myself up trying to roll over just the slightest bit, and it is instinct to roll to that side after so many years.

And last, but not least (and also not new, I just couldn’t figure out how to put this in the previous post), Albus is home! He has learned that if he lies on my left arm I can’t lift him to make him move. He really likes that.

Here are some photos of my sweet boy:

Newest to oldest (the first two are after his return!)

albus is home

His tongue always sticks out like that…

albus selfie

I had my camera up on my phone and he bumped me, essentially taking his own photo

muddy al

He had a bath the night before..

christmas albus

Xmas Albus

photo(5)

My all time favorite photo of this guy.

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Lions and Tigers and Bears

You guys… YOU WILL NEVER GUESS WHAT HAPPENED.

Never.

It’s okay, though, because I’m going to tell you!

I am NOT having another surgery! Yay! Hooray! Do the Harlem Shake! Woo!

During my previous surgery, they removed what would ‘normally’ be removed in a mastectomy and the surgeon and pathologist knew by looking at it that the margins wouldn’t be clear, so they removed ANOTHER bit.

The pathology report is correct in saying that margins aren’t clear. However, it is also correct in saying that they ARE clear. You see, it is written out of order. It lists the second section that was removed first. It says those margins are clear. Below that, at the end of the report, it lists the first sections margins and that they are not clear.

That may not make any sense. If not, what it means is that someone didn’t read the report thoroughly and notice that it was written out of order. IT MEANS THAT MY MARGINS ARE CLEAR! Yay! Clear Margins! It means that I don’t have to have surgery! Yay! I can keep recovering without starting over!

More good news? I got rid of my drain today! I am no longer carrying around a bulb of blood and other fluids. I don’t have to find a place to shove a blood bulb when I get dressed! (You’d think it would make sense to just shove it where the boob used to be, and I have, but eventually, you gotta move it… it starts to get a littttle uncomfortable. And I realized someone might see it and think I had funky cleavage.)

Now that I can’t shove the blood bulb into the empty place on my chest for a faux boob, I guess I can start wearing my fake boob!

Actually, I did that today.

I tried a few days ago and just couldn’t figure the thing out.

I had it all wrong! No idea what I was doing.

Then Whitney, my sister, comes in this morning and holds it up to her boob like she just KNOWS how to wear it. I’m glad someone understands it or I’d just shove some socks in a bra (when I can wear one, again) and call it done!

Now that surgery is out of the way, on to radiation! I’ll start in a few (4ish) weeks! (No details, yet. Must see my radiologist and oncologist before I can tell you those.)

Running to the bear is exhausting.

My pathology report came back today, but before I get to that… let me just say how thankful I am that I gave in and accepted help from people.

I am under a lot of stress at home without having to make dinner and such so I have no clue how we would cook dinner without burning the house down.

My pride kept telling me, ‘No, Bekah, you CAN do EVERYTHING! You can recuperate and get up and help clean and cook dinner and take care of Albus!’

But, No. No, I can’t.

I can’t do much at all because my left arm is pretty useless, I have one leg and I have a drain hanging out of my torso. I am really good at sitting here. I can plan a wedding and write thank you notes. This, by the way, has kept me sane and unstressed. I am so glad we got engaged before surgery!

I am not completely finished, of course, but I have gotten it started and I’m rather enjoying myself! If you guys have any tips or ideas do not hesitate to share.

Now, on to the not-so-fun update.

My pathology report.

My lymph node biopsy and dissection came back clear, so, no chemo! Yay!

However, my margins are another story. They came back not so clear. In fact, they came back so NOT clear that I have to have another surgery before I can start radiation. I do not know a date, yet, just that it will be next week. They are going to remove more of the tissue from the underside of the breast area. Because I’m a small person, I’m already pulled pretty tight from the first surgery. They removed all of the skin on the breast and had to stretch the skin that was left to cover the wound. I am so tight that this time we will have a plastic surgeon in the operating room as well, and he will get tissue from another part of my body in order to close the wound, if needed.

We won’t even remove my drain before surgery.  I mean, I’m still covered in steri-strips from Monday!

I’m not really feeling much when it comes to the news. I expected radiation and I’m willing to do pretty much everything the doctors want me to do in order to beat this.

I can’t walk to the bathroom, but I can run to the bear!