10/30/18

It’s been about a week since my surgery. I’ve mainly been in the house, recovering and trying to eat my protein and drink my ounces. It’s not easy. My body has been reacting to my surgery is many ways, so it’s a lot to take in. But my incisions are healing nicely and I have no pain.

The hardest feeling to adjust to is fullness. It happens very quickly and can come upon me before I suspect it. I’ve gotten permission to expand beyond protein shakes pretty quickly so tonight I made egg salad with a bit of Greek yogurt and a pinch of tarragon. It was pretty tasty but very filling.

I keep trying to go out for a drive to Target or somewhere but I don’t quite have the strength yet. Ted took me to Walgreens yesterday so that was helpful. He’ll be back on Thursday so I’ll have more help again. He’s the best!

Mom started chemo again yesterday. She seems to be handling it fairly well. She even went out to J Jill to buy some new pants! She’s been calling me every day, appropriately mothering her daughter healing from surgery, and it’s nice to have our roles reversed for the time being: mother caring for daughter. I’m glad to have our daily – sometimes twice daily – chats while we’re both home. We compare what we’ve eaten, how we feel, etc. It’s a sweet opportunity for us to support each other equally.

I think I’m over the regret I felt last week about having the surgery. I can tell I’m starting to lose weight. My clothes don’t feel different but I can see my cheekbones starting to emerge again. I’ve missed having a great canvas for blush!

Over Thanksgiving, I will plan to shop in mom’s closet for some of her bigger sized things that are now too big on her. She has some nice things! I told her I’d bring a big suitcase. Meanwhile, I have about 5 bags packed to donate of my largest sizes. Eventually my wardrobe will completely change. It’s very surreal. I have a lot of nice things so if you know anyone who is plus sized who might enjoy a free wardrobe freshening up, send me a note as I’m happy for my things to go to great, deserving homes. I’m also going to sell things on ThredUp.

Wow, long update. Thanks for the support and stay with us on our journeys!

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Post Op Update

I can’t believe I had surgery on Monday and I’m doing very well with my recovery. Slept well and am now slowly drinking my protein and water as instructed. I’ve set an alarm to drink 2 ounces every 15 minutes. And I just took a quick walk outside! My back and arms feel a lot better today.

I’ve been eyeing this lipstick set on Sephora so just treated myself!

Now I’m watching a new show called FBI on CBS which is mildly entertaining.

And I can tell that I will be so bored soon so I may switch to reading which never bores me. Any suggestions?

Ted will visit me on Friday or Saturday followed by Ken & Marina on Sunday so that’ll help with the boredom. I’m going to aim to go out a little next week. Maybe a movie…or two….

Last Hurrah Week

Work is behind me for 2 weeks now as I embark upon my next journey. Busy getting ready for my surgery and recovery. As of tomorrow, I’m on protein shakes and sugar-free drinks for about 2 weeks. I just removed my nail polish so they can take my oxygen. I’m ready.

Mom is doing very well. She even had lunch out with my dad! She’s talking about going out for Thanksgiving. All great in terms of providing her with normalcy.

Mr T came over last night and we had pizza & ice cream cake – and wine – as part of my “last hurrah” week.

Tonight I gave myself a home facial and am settling in for the evening. Tomorrow I’ll be getting cut & color. All good things.

1 week

My surgery is in one week! To commemorate the occasion, I packed two bags of clothing and shoes to donate.

Mom is slowly gaining some energy. Dad ordered Italian tonight. No news on returning to chemo. One day at a time, as everyone keeps saying.

Mr T made me a lovely “linner” yesterday before I drove to Hartford for work. Landed another donation – the donor doubled her gift and said it was because I convinced her to give more. Fundraising IS fun!

I’m watching The Sinner now on Netflix. Anyone else watched it? It’s very compelling. Jessica Biel is excellent in it! She’s come a long way since 7th Heaven.

A big thank you to my cousin KS for sending me a necklace with the word “breathe” on it. Lovely thing to get in the mail on a rainy Monday. I will wear it and look at it as a reminder to focus on my breathing.

Small Miracles

Mom is home and slowly acclimating back to her regular environment after a 1-week hospital stay, which we all believe was crucial to her well being. She has her appetite back, thanks to a happy little pill that gives her the munchies. She’s had pizza, chocolate, even a hamburger! Dad’s working on a plan for the next stage, which will include some physical therapy and nursing care at home to help her out. He’s got a lot on his plate and he’s handling it like a champ. But he’s exhausted. So if you call or text him, don’t keep him on the phone too long. Ken is visiting this weekend.

I spent the morning at the hospital getting my pre-surgical tests – blood, EKG, and chest x-ray. Tomorrow, I have a mammogram to make sure all is good there before I have surgery. My PCP insisted on it. And that’s it. I’ve fulfilled all of the pre-surgical requirements so the next step is my pre-hospital stay diet, and then a week from Monday, I will have 75% of my stomach surgically removed. And my life will be forever changed.

My review yesterday, overall, went well. My boss said I have far surpassed their expectations for me, and with the 7-figure gift I’m finalizing, I have met my FY19 goals within 11 days of the fiscal year! So that’s pretty fucking fantastic, pardon my French. It can only go up from here with work. My boss said he’d like to put together a promotion plan for me so that by next year, I will gain a “senior” title.

And, Mr Ted came over last night for dinner. He gave me – seriously – the best massage I’ve ever had. He eliminated knots in my shoulders, legs and back that I’ve been carrying around with me for years. Seriously, I told him I felt like I should give him a tip! My body feels better today that it has felt in years. He’s a keeper.

19 days

It’s amazing how pjs and a cozy bed can help one’s mood.

I went to the Mt Auburn group tonight and while the session wasn’t super helpful, I did get some great advice:

“This surgery is the best thing I ever did.” — said a woman who had the surgery 6 years ago.

“I was driving again 8 days post-surgery.” –said a woman I met at the last group who was pre-surgery and is now post.

I told them all I care about is getting back in the car to see my mom as quickly as possible.

Optimism.

10/2/18

It’s almost 10pm on October 2. Just home from spending 4 days at my parent’s place. It was very hard to leave this time. Mom is quite weak and having trouble eating, likely from the reconstruction of her GI tract during her surgery in June.

She’s had 2 weeks off from chemo, but I think she’ll be ready to get a dose next Monday. She may need TPN, which is basically IV nutrition. She’d have to go to the hospital to get the right dosage, and then she could get the rest at home.

We made the decision for her to start sleeping in the downstairs den so she doesn’t have to do the stairs to her room. Her weakness plus arthritic knees equal a stair climbing nightmare. She’s moving tomorrow.

We also discussed getting a home health aide to help her which ultimately helps my dad. I believe it will improve both’s quality of life.

It is so hard to do this from Boston. I wish I could be there longer but I have to get back to work.

Last night, I tucked mom in and she said, “You are the best daughter in the world.” I told her she was the best mother. I doubt I’ll ever forget that moment. This came after a visit from our rabbi friend, who offered us her wisdom and sang a prayer for us. Mom & I cried. It was beautiful.

My surgery is in 20 days! I’m starting to go through my clothes, looking for smaller sizes, and preparing to donate the larger ones. It’s surreal but so exciting! I can’t wait to feel better and be able to move more.

As always, thank you to all of you who have reached out to me & my folks. It means a lot!