Today was another trip down memory lane for me. This time last year, I was probably puking my guts up in the hospital after spending the entire day under the knife. It was the cliff-jumping day. Until this day, cancer was just a grim idea, but on this day it became reality. It's when the testing and screening all came to a crashing halt, and they actually got that little cancerous guy out of me. From diagnosis day to the day of surgery, I think that I must have lived on adrenaline. I went 26, grueling days of pure torture. There is something very disturbing about knowing that you have cancer in your body, but not being able to do a thing about it. It's awful. The docs kept telling me, "Oh, we think that we caught it very early, but it's very aggressive. The MOST aggressive, but that's okay because it was detected early. We think." I kept thinking, "Okay, so let's keep the outlook positive and get the that thing out!" I understand the staging process. I get that you can't just run in to the operating room and chop your breasts off, throwing all caution to the wind.
Man, that was a rough day. More for Brian than for me. I was asleep, after all. I do remember crying because Brian wouldn't get me a hamburger when I was in recovery. And then, I remember crying when the nurses told me that I had to move myself from my surgery bed to the hospital bed. I thought they were nuts, and I really still do. I told them that my husband would move me as soon as he got into the room, but they wouldn't listen and they wouldn't let me wait on him. And then, I remember crying when Brian walked away from my side and stood by the hospital room door. I could still see him, but I was afraid he was going to slip out without me. Then, I remember constantly calling his name and demanding his help after we got home. I worked that guy like a slave, but he kept our house spotless because he knew that my anal personality could only truly rest in an orderly environment. And, I remember him intercepting floral arrangement after fruit bouquet after casserole after gift card after gift after gift after gift as they poured into our house.
And, I remember when the time came for my pain pump to be removed. Through tears and gritted teeth Brian pulled that long tubing out of my body like a champ. Oh, and the drains. That disgusting little system of tubes and bulbs that so elegantly drained the fluid out of my body.
And the expansions. Yikes! Let's just say that bigger is not always better. It can hurt like the dickens! On one particular night, I was in such excruciating pain that, no matter what I did or how I moved, I felt like knives were stabbing through my lungs. Those involuntary muscle contractions were unlike any other pain that I've ever felt.
What a time that was. I remember telling myself every day, "This too shall pass..."
And, you know what? It did.