09 May 2011

One Week Out and Ready to Take the Next Step ....Literally!

It's Monday, May 9.  I am one week post-op from mastectomy and tram flap reconstruction.  I've leaned a lot over the past week about the procedure, how to listen to my body and how to take care of myself.  I've also taken some strides to get myself up and healthy.

A week ago, I didn't really know what to expect.  Yes, the doctor said he was sending me home with drains attached...but I didn't know to what extent.  Eighteen years ago, I was discharged with one drain under my arm, emptying me of the lymph from the node dissection.  Today, I still have three drains...one on my side to drain the excess fluids from the mastectomy and the newly constructed breast, and then two in the lower abdomen area to drain the surgical site where muscle, fat and tissue were taken to create the new breast.  I have to monitor this drainage (which is not nice), emptying the drains into a measuring cup and noting the cc's from each site.  I have to keep a drain log which I call in to the surgeon's office. 

I've learned to listen to my body.  I've not ever been a "nappy" type of person.  But after this surgery, let me tell you....I nap.  The Vicodin kicks in after about 20 minutes, and I need to nap.  When I haven't been able to, because of family, etc., I can feel it.  The rest helps me heal, and I actually think I'm doing better because of the napping.

I think the hardest thing to get used to is allowing myself to rely on others.  I have never been very high maintenance, and I've never been going at asking for help.  After surgery I have no choice.  I can't bend.  I can't drive.  I can't  move quickly.  I can't shower or wash my hair.  What I CAN do is ask.  This is not easy, but unless I want to get my hair washed, I have to ask.  Sponge bath?  Ask.  You get the idea.  Not easy, but necessary.

And then this week, Ani and I signed up to participate in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.  We've done this before...and we're doing it again.  I was on the fence about signing up again this year -- we have an $1800 fundraising goal EACH.  It's hard to ask friends for money.  BUT after this year's diagnosis, I feel that I HAVE TO WALK.  First of all, I need to push myself.  The training will be a way to get out, push myself to get up and moving, but most of all....it's to celebrate life!  And to raise money and awareness for breast cancer, and to work toward a cure.  So I've included a link to my page.  I hope you'll consider supporting me.  Any amount you'd like to donate is fine and very much appreciated.  Here's the link:  http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/LosAngeles?px=2246507&pg=personal&fr_id=2060

Do you have a friend or family member that you'd like us to walk in honor/memory or celebration of?  Please send me their name and we will carry them along with us:

These are the names of those we walked in honor and memory of last year.  We carried these names with us on our packs every step of the 39.3 miles!

Anyways, I hope you'll consider supporting the cause.  If you'd rather send a check, please email me: ahnoosh@ca.rr.com

Help us take the next step in breast cancer.  Here we are at the Avon Walk 2010 after crossing the finish line.  It's incredible to participate in something so powerful....and to do it with your daughter!  Because of walkers who walked and raised awareness before me, I am alive today!  And grateful! 

1 comment:

Bruce Burr said...

keep up the good recovery!