October 11, 2017 was my big surgery day! My sweet cousin came in from Missouri on Tuesday night to be here with us through my surgery. She stayed with me at the hospital the whole time so that Keith could be home with E each night.
We went to the hospital Wednesday morning. We arrived around 10:00am. My surgery was scheduled for 12:30pm.
Side note here: I so not remember my shirt being wrinkled like that when I got dressed, I think it just got really wrinkled on the drive down to the hospital! But here I am ready to get this show on the road and say “Good Bye to Cancer”!
The next thing we had to do was to get me checked in!
I actually have pictures with almost everyone at the hospital. All the nurses, technicians, the lady checking me in, etc….some of them did not want me to post their pictures, so I am not going to post any of them so I do not accidentally post the wrong ones. I wanted pictures with everyone though so when I do my scrapbook of this journey.
Once we got me checked in, I looked and my sweet friends had already started arriving to be there for the surgery. I did not really get to talk to them before hand, except for Amy P, quickly telling her how coffee had ended up on my shirt and I really needed her to take it home and try to get it out so that it didn’t stain my shirt. I might add here, I no longer drink coffee so it was not my coffee on my shirt….that is a whole other post:).
Once I got back to my room and got changed one of our sweet ministers from my church was there to pray for me. I forgot to get a picture with him but will have to do that soon!
After he left and the nurses had me prepped for surgery they let my friends start coming back to see me but not before my cousin sent me this picture from the waiting room!
The girls started coming back in groups of three to see me before I was off to surgery! It really made the time pass by quickly too!
These friends have been with me for a really long time in my life! You may all recognize Amy P on the far right, she is the one who took me to 12 of my 16 chemo treatments! You have seen pictures of Sherry and Alesha on the blog in the past too. Sherry has taken me to doctor appointments and to get fluids. Alesha has come and sat with me so Keith could get out of the house and offered to keep E at anytime I might have needed her to help out with her. Alesha also cut up lots of sweet potatoes and broccoli on vacation this summer so that I always had something to eat when I could not eat what everyone else was eating or maybe not feeling up to cooking for myself at times.
Sherry and Alesha were friends before Kate was ever born….and Amy and I became friends through our husbands shortly after Kate passed away. They have definitely seen me at my best and at my worse!
These girls have been around a long time too. They have all three mama sat at some point during chemo or just come over to hang out or bring meals and the list goes on and on. We joked after surgery in my room that Gretchen (in the middle) is always at the hospital with me – she was up there a lot when Kate was born, when E was born and then again as I was in the hospital for this surgery. These 3 have seen the best and worse sides of me too!
And here is Dr. A with me before surgery. She is the one who had to make the call to me in April and tell me that I had breast cancer. She told me that day on the phone that she was going to walk through this with me and did she ever! She was at as many chemo treatments as she could come to, she came to see me when they put my port in, she has talked to me on the phone and through text the whole 6 months when I may have questions or start worrying about something or even have a bit of “good news”! I am so blessed to have her in my life! She has walked through a lot with me the past twelve years and I am very thankful for her!
The time finally came for them to wheel me back and let the surgery begin. The surgery was scheduled for about 4 hours. Each doctor was scheduled for about 2 hours each. Dr. G, my surgical oncologist would go in first and preform the double mastectomy.
Once she was done, Dr. K took over to begin my reconstruction surgery, which at this point was putting in my expanders and drain tubes.
The next thing I remember from when the nurses came to take me to the OR was waking up in recovery and being very cold. I kinda remember Keith and Dr. A coming back to see me. Now, when they read this, they may tell me they never came back to recovery to see me, but for some reason I think I remember that. I don’t remember what we talked about but I think I remember seeing them. I am guessing my cousin came back to, because I have a picture of me with the recovery room nurses:).
It was finally time to take me to my room. Remember I said I was cold, they had wrapped a blanket around my head.
I am not sure how long I slept after I got back in my room. Maybe Keith or Kelly will chime in and let me know.
Keith, Gretchen and Kelly were all there when I got to my room! Then Amy P and Dave came up and Amy Jane came up. I was feeling good after I woke up, Praise the Lord!!
Here is a picture with my cousin, Kelly. She was taking most of the pictures so she was not in many of them.
We had Dave take a selfie so that everyone could be in this picture Wednesday night.
My friends helped out with E after school. Jennifer picked her up and took her to Mary Margaret’s house. Keith picked her up from MM late that evening.
Eventually, everyone left the hospital for the evening and it was just Kelly and me. I was talking her ear off until about midnight when the nurses came in and gave me some of my meds that made me sleepy.
I was thankful the surgery was over and that I was feeling well.
Even though I am not posting pictures of the nurses and technicians, I had the sweetest group of people assigned to me. They were so kind and always so helpful.
Thank you all for walking this journey with us,
For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.
He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him;
God is a refuge for us. Psalm 62: 5-8